23 March 2015

Broken Glass

Dear Family,

Hello! Things are going well over here in GH. A pretty strange week, to be honest, but not bad! It all started off with our zone conference on Tuesday. It was nice! We were in Takoradi for it, and it was my first time to sit on their nice wooden benches. Yep, benches. Crazy, right? I almost forgot that chapels can have benches! With little places for the hymnbooks! It was a good conference, though it wasn't combined zones. President Stevenson really emphasized unity, something that went well with his former instructions on obedience. It worked well because, unfortunately, often times when obedience is stressed it causes contentions. "Instead of a culture of obedience developing, we've been developing a culture of contention!" --Pres. Stevenson, paraphrased. So he talked about unity. It was cool to see how applicable the instruction was. 

For lunch they gave us some fried rice and stuff with bottled drinks. I had the bright idea to open the bottle on a cement step! A great thought there. Okay, but in my defense, normally it works. But for this time, it didn't. I hit the top of the bottle like normal to open it and *SMASH* the entire bottle shattered in my hand (as far as the physics of it go, I could possibly claim that the pressure in the bottle was so far negative that when the top of the bottle expanded the volume without increasing immediately the air inside the bottle, the pressure made it implode. Possibly. ;)). So, that was a fun mess to clean up. ;)

On the way home from the conference, we saw an American football jersey that my companion LOVED. What team? The Broncos. :P Well, we checked out the jersey. It looked nice, and, though I wasn't in support of it and had to lend him the money to buy it because he forgot his wallet, I spotted him. We looked at it closer later and... It looks legit. The emblem on the front of the neck looks like the machine missed a stitch, which could mean that it's just an imperfect jersey, but it is WAY nice. For less than US$10. Crazy, right? Not some cheap-o jersey, but a NICE one!

Between Wednesday and Thursday, things were pretty boring on the reporting end. We taught some people! We found a couple new people to teach that we're excited about. Friday was a more interesting day to talk about; it was my 18 month mark! So it started off with some exciting stuff: failed appointments and lots of walking! ;) Yeah, it wasn't the most fun thing to do, but one of our wonderful members, Sister Akim, saw us as she parked her car to go do something at a small boutique and called us over. We went over and she handed me the keys to her minivan (holding those keys was such a strange feeling... Cars... O.o) and told us to grab a couple malts out of her car for ourselves. It was so nice! It gave us encouragement to contact more people. Malts are good, though I don't know if I have talked about them before. At first taste, they taste like CRAP. But then they get better. Over these months, especially in Ghana where they drink them more, I've been learning to really like them. They're barley based, and even look in such a way that they print on the label "non-alcoholic", because quite a few alcohol companies produce malt. Do they sell the stuff back home? Anyway, we talked to more people and drank our malts. Then we reached a pivotal time: 4 pm. We had been trying to call a potential investigator all day, but her phone was off every time. We had no idea where she lived, except for "11th street". Great help there. But it was 3:50, and we had a decision to make. Do we go there? We did. And as we were in sight of 11th street, her phone was still off. But we kept walking, and as we set foot on the corner of the street and called, it went through. She was just returning from work, and right nearby. She met us on the road, and we went and taught a great first lesson! A little miracle there.

The second half of the day went nicely, and we also received another new investigator, a girl who is a new employee at the restaurant that a recent convert, H., is the manager, and her auntie, ... owns the restaurant. So we taught their new hires! ;) We're excited to teach them. :) We weren't able to do anything that evening to celebrate my 18 month mark because we were planning to be on an exchange that didn't actually happen, but it's okay. The next day made up for it. :)

Saturday started with chapel cleaning! Normal stuff. I found the chapel's supply of pledge and had pure joy as I cleaned with pledge. The other missionaries laughed. Mom, thanks for teaching me to appreciate using pledge. ;) Anyway, we did some stuff and then it was stake conference, the adult session! That went well, and it was cool! They did role plays up on the stand to teach the stake how to do things like BYC and Family Councils! But that ended soon enough, and I overheard Elder Judy talking about some really amazing Indian restaurant that he wanted to try out. Soooo... me being me, we talked our way into taking the zone leaders with us to this amazing place. Pics next week. It's called "Bombay" and the food was SO good. Not some American home food thing, but just GOOD food. I got Lamb Vindaloo. So good. 
Celebrating 18 months of service with Indian food (more photos of this day here)
When it came to order the dessert, they didn't have the Indian dessert thing there, so Elder Judy suggested this "great place that's on the other side of town called 'Squeeze.' It sells REAL smoothies!!! Plus, it's closer to the Sekondi station [station to get a trotro from Takoradi to Sekondi] and closer to our apartment so the transport won't get in the way of anything!" Needless to say, we went. And got smoothies. And they were incredible. :) It was a good 18 month mark. But it wasn't finished there!

Sunday was stake conference again, and it was good, again. :) SO MANY PEOPLE. Oh my goodness. So many. Plus, the choir was wearing this hilarious teal outfit. The Julanders were part of the choir, so I got a nice picture with them. :D 
he didn't send the "nice picture" yet, but here's one from Pres. Stevenson's blog
Updated with the "nice picture" with the Julanders :)
And our friend S, the formerly less-active girl, was there and singing in the choir! It was awesome! Things went well, and we eventually got back home and out. That night we had planned a great activity up with the Julanders for my 18 month mark! It was awesome. They're great people. :) We had cake (a mix that had been sent to Elder Allen) in the shape of hearts with frosting on it. Such good cake, and a great evening up there to celebrate with the people around me.

This morning we had a zone activity at the stake center, sports! I played all the ones that were running, and one guy even had roller blades! So I laced myself in and rode around on those for some time. Really fun to do that again. :) Plus we played football (soccer), volleyball, and touch rugby. I didn't sit any out, I like playing. ;) Our volleyball team dominated. It's been a good week! Some good people have popped out for us, and we're able to work with more now to use our time. We've been planning with the ward this week to have a ward movie and popcorn night on Tuesday! It's been planned by the missionaries, but we're trying to help our ward have more fun. Something that will make them want to bring friends with them. So we planned this! After polling the members, we've decided to watch the Saratov Approach. Exciting, right? :D We're looking forward to that. That and the baptism on Saturday will be GREAT! I'm so excited for B. and A. They're doing great, though we didn't see them this week because of their travels for work. I will definitely have pictures with them for you next week. :)

It sounds like things are going well for y'all back home. :) I liked the pictures, and the hair thing was really cool! I love you all so much. :) Things are going well, and transfer news is on Saturday. We'll find out who my new companion is! I'm trying to still make a difference and overcome the natural man. It isn't easy, but I won't give up! I want to make it strong! Have a great week. Do good things. The church is true, y'know. :)

Elder Price

[His PS comments are related to some photos I shared with him at the end of my email. The computer in the internet cafe wouldn't read his SD card, so he couldn't send any this week. Instead I'll share these:]

PS whoahh that Torihada picture. O.O

PPS hahaha... Uh... I was mimicking the Africans when it rains. They cover their hair. The chemicals they use to make it look or be softer wash away in the rain, and the rain can also ruin the artificial hair.... :)  

PPPS can't wait for hot dogs!!! 

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