(French for: "This is Africa") A common term used by the missionaries when they want to express "thats just the way it is because "THIS IS AFRICA"! ie..."the power went out..AGAIN... C'est Afrique...or sometimes denoted as TIA...This Is Africa!!)) Elder Halvorsen has been serving a full time mission since January of 2009 in the Ivory Coast, Abidjan West Africa Mission. This mission encompasses the countries of Benin, Togo and Ivory Coast. He loves it there and is enjoying his experiences serving the Lord and the people of West Africa!!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Gaining momentum and weight

No packages, or card. WHICH IS DRIVING ME NUTS!!! I've wanted to get some SWEET Boubou's made, but no. Don't got ANY money. It kills me... Health is great. Investagators, I'll explain later. I think what I would love for Christmas is my card... Cause there is just so much cool stuff that is cheap here... That and some photos of life there. I haven't seen any photos of you guys and you're about to get 800 or so with some videos of Côte D'Ivoire and Bénin... Oh well.

I don't need any shoes. You can pick up a pair of comfortable Armani's for 10 bucks here. no big. Of COURSE I haven't said yes to people [to these marriage proposals he keeps talking about]. I know I'm on a mission. : ) Ruby [our black lab] sounds so cute!!! I can't believe she caught fish... I really hope she's there when I get home... It's a need for me to have a dog in my life now because of her... I'm glad I don't have one here cause I'd never cuddle with it AND it's kinda against the rules to have pets. We kinda stretched the rule with our pet praying mantis...

Yeah Yolande, the large lady, is crazy strong. I baptised her in a font that came halfway up my quad's. So I had a long way down and a long way up... KILLED. She's already started teaching other people about the gospel and here two kids that turn 8 in décembre are getting baptised. She's SO incredible.

We also have two other baptisms this week. There's a lady named Beatrice. She's Ivoirien; but she's fluent in English, not french cause she lived in Ghana and Liberia for a long time. Unfortunately she's going to be moving to Côte D'Ivoire soon again, but she's really strong and so is her son. We picked them up for church and they sat undercover with us when it was just POURING down rain Sunday. I was FREEZING at around 75°. I'm in deep trouble when I get home. I'm probably just gonna have four sweartshirts and lay in bed till summer comes... I totally forgot about Conference. I'm going to watch it in French. I listen to these spritual thought CD's in French, so it's kinda the same. Sometimes the translation sucks, so maybe I will watch it in English... Haven't decided now...

I wish I could baptize in a river or the sea. That'd be sweet but two problems. The rivers are FILTHY and the sea has constant rip tides... So I'll probably never have the chance.... It's started to rain again and we gotta walk. Another soaking...

So reality bites. I'm getting fat and I just finally admitted it. We've been cooking too much stuff at every meal. I can't believe I gained weight in Africa. I NEVER thought that was possible. Ah. There's the thunder. EVERY time it rains, there's thunder.

We had a funny experience with a taxi again. This one guy gave us a ride, and we'd seen him before. So he dropped us off at Etoile Rouge, and we did some stuff and then walked to Gdèdromédé to see the other two Elder's over there. So we stopped a taxi guy there, and it was THE SAME GUY!!! It was crazy! So we tipped him.

We have our zone conference coming up next week, but that sucks cause it was supposed to happen like 2 or 3 weeks ago, so now it's scheduled on a P-day, so we won't have a p day for two weeks... Oh well.

There's something you do A LOT in Africa during the mission also. Chastisement. I've learned you have to be a little more strong when you give commitments. I don't like the sterotype that black people are lazy, but most Africans are... So I'm not being racist! It's just the truth. So we've gotta be strong when we give commitments, or they'll just be like, oh. Okay. Ya. And they ALWAYS have an excuse, even if it's ridiculous. Just gotta rail on them sometimes... Lol! It's kinda fun.

So The other Elder's have been saying that I'll be a great dad. I was going through the kitchen saying a little loudly, "Empty bottles don't go in the Fridge, forks are supposed to be washed after you use them, garbage goes in the garbage bag, not on the counter." just things like that. It was great. : )

And last but most DEFINITELY not least. BON ANNIVERSAIRE A MES FRERES ET MON PERE ENCORE!!! Bon Anniversaire à vous tous qui ont eues un anniversaire et je vous souhaite le mieux dans vos vies et bien sûr pour à jamais!!! Je pensais que vous aimeriez vos voeuxs en Français cette fois, parce que les deux fois dernière étaient en Anglais. JE VOUS AIME BEAUCOUP!!!

[Google Translation: HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY BROTHERS AND MY FATHER AGAIN! Happy Birthday to all of you who have had a birthday and I wish you the best in your lives and of course forever! I thought you would like your vows in French this time because last time the two were in English. I LOVE YOU VERY MUCH!]

I hope that all is well at the house and in your lives. It's hard for me to imagine what life is like for you over there, but I'm sure it's going great!!! I love you all and miss you guys a TON!!!


Elder Halvorsen

P.S. Mom, I was wondering about the school application and how that's going to work out and when the applications can be put in. Thank you!

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