(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!!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Red Week: Tomato plants and a bloody toe

Wow. Life hasn't slowed down at all for you guys. That talk sounds like it was really good. I'm glad that you had a chance to feel closer to me even if it's some thousand miles that seperate us. Anything that helps you makes me happy. :)

And Dad, I'm so very thankful for the parts of your mission that you shared with me. I haven't gotten the package. I've not been feeling too great but I know why. There's always a lot new investigators. Baptisms, no. The baptism is for the 15th. We might have six. Four are sure.

They're building a baptismal font at our branch, too! Cool! I think that President Blaze picks up the mail here in Togo. He's the Branch President of Hedranewoe. We actually just got a ton of rain yesterday. I got to see the first session of Conference too. That was really enjoyable. I didn't get to see all of it... I'll wait for the Liahona. I think it will be better if you call Saturday at roughly the same time. We might be having interviews with the president or surprise inspections at our apartments the Sunday night. Saturday at 8:00p.m. I hope that that works. That makes me really trunky that Jon is home... Oh man... I know that it wont be much longer though before I'm in the same train.

I forgot to tell you, I've been growing a tomato plant with our laundry machine. It's outside and the excess water just spits out the back. I had it growing really well for a while but I think I have Dad's curse. It's dying. Lol! For some reason I remember perfectly that in Edgewood, Dad coud NEVER get tomato plants to grow. : )

Like I said, I'm really thankful for the mission story you shared. There are such radical differences between our missions. I have to FORCE people to NOT feed me! I swear I eat every hour. Lol! And normally with a first contact, we talk a little bit at least and get their contact and info with a next appointment. The goals for our Standard of Excellence is to have 4 baptisms a month, 1 date of baptism fixed DAILY, 36 lessons in a week, and 36 new investigators a week. Elder Kakou and I were on top for January, February, and March. We only had one baptism in April, but we'll be there again in May. : ) One has to work really hard to keep those. It makes you really tired too! Lol!

Well my health hasn't been too spectacular. That doesn't mean that it's bad. I'm glad I have a District that loves me and Elder Cruz and Elder Cloward gave me a really good talking to. And then with the story of the Sierra Leonian and the history of Dad's mission really gave me another boost of strength. Thank you so much for being great parents and helping me all the time. I hope the other boys see that as well.

A little on the lighter side. We were cleaning the branch at Hedranewoe to get ready for the conference this last saturday. We started setting up the chairs and sweeping and cleaning. I was going to go in the bathroom to grab an African broom (a broom made only of wood, even the sweepy thing on bottom) and I didn't see the little edge of tile that was on the entrance to the bathroom. I was wearing just the cheap rubber sandals that you can buy here off the womens' head. So I was walking kind of fast and didn't see the edge. BAMM! My big toe on my left foot caught the edge of the tile on the bottom of my toe and scraped off the skin about the size of a quarter. (If I remember correctly the size of a quarter...)

So being weaked stomached as I am, I quickly layed down on a bench and asked for water as my toe is bleeding on the floor. So I started getting dizzy and all that good stuff that happens EVERY time I get a good size cut. They had alcohol only and they put that on. That burned, but they wanted to take the skin off and clean it better.

There was a member that has a little medical room a little ways away and it was too far to walk, especially with me on the point of fainting, and no one here has a car. So I got on the back of a little 135 Motorcycle and he brought me to the spot. I entered and this lady directed to me a little back room with a high table. I layed down and just thought wow. I'm in Africa. I wish I would've taken a picture but I wasn't really thinking camera at the time. So she cut of the skin and grabbed this yellow bottle. I asked "What's that?" She said Bertinda or something weird like that. I asked "Does it burn?" Oh no. Not at all. That's when I felt like someone had stuck a knife in my toe. Yep. I started groaning and pounding the table. Everyone thought it was the funniest thing of all time. Lol! It was interesting. I'm walking fine already so it's no big deal. It's healing well too.

Well that's the news! I'm really excited for your call! I can't believe there's only one more left after that! and one more conference! It goes by so fast! I love you all! Tell the boys to think of GOOD questions and to talk clearly into the phone also. Love you!

Elder Halvorsen

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