Monday, November 7, 2016

Going Full African

I am not quite sure what to write this week. I do so many things during the week I cannot begin to describe all the stories. I really want to describe all my feelings but it is impossible to do that.
However I did have some great experiences this week and I want to share one with you.

We were walking the long walk to church the other day and we see a guy all dressed up in church clothes and he is white so he sticks out. He sees us and gets really excited, he runs across the street and says he doesn't speak french but he was so glad he ran into us because he is a latter day saint, he lives in Utah but is in Benin for 8 weeks to teach an english class. He fasted and prayed that on Sunday God would lead him to an LDS church and he went out of his apartment and just chose a random direction and started walking and he ran into us! Even though that was the opposite way to the stake center and because I spoke English he could explain his situation and we got to be the
answer to his prayer. That doesn't happen just by chance.

I also look African right now my hair is so short because Mukendi and Olela thought my hair was weird they made me go to the african barber and they have no idea how to cut American hair so I look super super different. It is all good, it will grow back and it helps with the transition to full African. Which includes eating the same exact thing for every meal every day (rice with tomato sauce) and super short hair, but hey I love it.

I also went to the serpent temple in Oudia today. It is a pretty short tour you mostly just go to take some pics with the snakes. It was really funny to see the people really freak out, some of the elders
were so scared it was so funny. I thought I would be scared but it was not dangerous at all, so I just really enjoyed it. However, that took all the morning so the apartment and clothes will stay dirty for
another week. You learn here just to roll with the punches. Like every time I grab a plate to eat I have to scrape a ton of living ants off it, I always have to have shoes on because our apartment floor is
coverd with a layer of sand that no doubt has been peed on. There are all sorts of little bugs and things in our apartment Mukendi already killed a mouse that was living in one of our pots. But this is not complaining in the slightest. I promise I am begining to really like it here. I know I am losing my mind, but I am okay with that.

One example of how I am losing my mind is that I am forgetting english. I had to teach a lesson to two Nigerians who don't speak French so Mukendi couldn't help and I struggled hardcore. I have learned how to teach and what scriptures to use and practiced all that in french, so I probably sounded like I do when I speak french. However, I have confidence the Holy ghost makes up the diffrence no matter the language. The french is really coming though, le don de lange is real and because I live with the Congolese I am starting to speak a little bit of Lingala because when the 2 speak to eachother it is always in Lingala and that language is super fun and simple and useful to talk to a lot of missionaries here and make good freinds. I am also trying my best to learn Fon because each time I say anything in Fon the people here love it because I am white. I learned how to say thank you very much this week, and you may think one phrase a week is slow progression but trust me it is not. Fon is so hard it is tonal like Chinese and is not written so it is hard to get help. Hey but I am learning I hope by the time I return home I will be able to speak 4 or 5 languages. I am well on my way. If you do it right a mission can be some of the best schooling ever. I am learning so many skills how to cook, how to wash cloths by hand (wich I am very good at by the way) how to barter, how to talk to people and I can learn a lot about the gosple too. So that is my goal, I've been here for a month already and I am so much better from the first week. It is still super hard, no doubt, but though the Lord and your prayers I can do all things, thank you.

Serpent Temple
Real snakes, and I'm not scared
Reading the Book of Mormon with my little buddy
My horrible haircut