Saturday, September 27, 2014

27 September 2014 Has it Really Been That Long?

Saturday Morning... I can hardly believe that it's been 3 weeks from my last post. We are working hard to keep missionaries on their feet. We had one Elder (actually 6) but one that arrived from the MTC in Prove on a Friday morning, we oriented them all day and sent them out to their areas with their trainers. On Tuesday one of the new Elders came down with signs of Malaria??? He had never missed his prevention  medicine. Malaria is suppose to take 8 to 18 days to rear its ugly head after bitten by a bad mosquito. We sent him in to be tested, he was so weak that the clinic had to come out to him for a blood draw. "Positive" we were all scratching our heads over that one. I hope he doesn't tell his mom for awhile. We have had Asthma, Runny Tummy (diarrhea), Constipation, Nausea, Cuts, Bruises, Rashes, Fungus, Broken Teeth, Toilet Infection(?), Bleeding Gums, Ingrown Toenails, Home Sickness (?), Eye Infections, Colds, Flu, Dog Bites, Sprained Ankles, Broken Knuckle, Tuberculosis, Malaria, Spider Bites, Champion Bug Stings, insomnia, and a few that I cant talk about. Sister Barney is doing a great job. All the missionaries love her (especially me) and the Senior Couples appreciate here taking the calls in the middle of the night. One Elder even called at 4:am and said he "I can't sleep"..."what should I do" :-)   Our suggestion. Why not wake up everyone and have a  PARTY!

Here are some pictures of our apartment. I'll take you on the tour.
If I could figure out how to compress video clips, I'd attach some pretty cool dash-cam stuff.
If anyone knows how, let me know. They are .MOV format.

 Looking West on our street.
 Looking East on our street, and you guessed it..."Why did the chicken 
cross the street"? To get to the banana tree?  Or get away from the vulture that was sitting on that wall.
 The security fence and gate around the apartment.
 #3 N. Bosomtwe Frimpong St.
Kumasi, Ashanti, Ghana
 Just try to say that one! For you that use Google Earth.
 Front yard and our Avocado tree & porch
 Porch looking at front gate.
 Front door view of apartment
 Front door & stuff
 Dining area
 Small look at front door ???
 Kitchen and 1/2 laundry room.
 Master suite.
 Throne room
 More of the same
 Laundry room other 1/2
 Storage in laundry room
 Pantry under the stairs that go to the upper apartments
 Back door that goes the fast way to the Sisters apartment.
We rarely use this door.
 Spare bedroom for other couples that come in for meetings
when they need to stay for a night.
 Our new Toyota Hilux.
 Down the side of the building going towards the Sisters
Apartment. There are 4 Sisters staying here.
 Sisters Apartment
 Rear of our building. Remember the FuFu Party.
 A room that I'm afraid to enter.
 Notice the trough in the floor. ??
Our front porch.
I need to tell you a funny. We have a Church Provided generator at our apartment. It's for our apartment only. All of the Senior couples have one for when the power goes off. And it goes off a lot.
The other day, the power was off and I had started the gen. Sister Barney was on the computer
and I was reading. By the way, the gen. will only run the lights. (Its being replaced) and that's a whole other story. Well I notice a woman on our front porch. 
She keeps bending over doing something, and the gen. goes into labor mode. 
I watch her for a minute or so, then go to check out what she's doing. Well, she has a coffee pot plugged into our outside outlet heating her morning brew. She smiles, I smile and say "Good Morning" and go back in the apartment.

Friday, September 5, 2014

5 September 2014 And the adventures keep coming

Well here we are, still in Ghana. We are a little hesitant to fully unpack. Not that we think we are moving, we are just a little gun-shy. We did finally get the rest of our luggage that we had to leave in Sierra Leone. Someone had fun going through our stuff. But we think most of it's here. I guess if we don't miss it now, it wasn't that important. We have learned that "Stuff is Just Stuff" and there are lots of things that are more important. We (the mission) have been receiving some e-mail from concerned parents about the spread of Ebola and the possibility of border closures. Believe-U-me that we are keeping a real close eye on the situation. If you are interested, Google "Ebola wiki 2014" there are some interesting articles from WHO, Doctors Without Borders, and CDC. I guess the consensus is that it has only just begun.
"What ever that means"
I think it's important to know that the members in Sierra Leone are carrying on with the work even without the missionaries. We received an e-mail from a friend that had 3 pictures attached from 3 different branches that each had close to a dozen baptisms just last week. "Congratulations and carry on Sierra Leone".
Ebola may rage, but the work will go forth!
Back to Kumasi, the work is really progressing here as well. Sister Barney had a cool "Missionary Moment" the other day. We have been tasked with finding medical facilities, again, as I mentioned. We visited a lab the other day, and the owner mentioned that they have a member of our church on staff, but he was not there at the time. A day or so later, he called and asked if he could come by and meet us. Sure...that would be great. He came over to the Mission Home with one of the managers of the lab to talk about what they have to offer and how we can access it. During the meeting, George the manager mentioned that he has read a few things about the Barney was on that like "White on Rice". We gave him some pamphlets and a Book of Mormon to read. He was seriously interested and promised to get started reading. It was a direct answer to our morning prayer. We asked for a Missionary Experience that day, and got it.
 Today we start with a "FUFU" party. FuFu is pounded Cassava Root.
First you boil it, then pound the heck out of it until it ends up like slippery mashed potatoes.
 Elders and Sisters of the Asokwa the FuFu party
 Pounding and pounding
 Too much pounding...
 Elder Preator giving it a go.
 View from the balcony
 This is the stew that is put on the FuFu.
It's made with tomato paste, chicken and/or fish, onions and spices.
 No, this is not something to eat. It's a dirty water filter. 
It goes in white and comes out....?
 This is gross... what is it?
Our water filter?!
 Kumasi Mission Home
There are falcons nesting on the ledge above the middle pillar.
 Neighbors cooking on the street in front of the Mission Home.
 Tomato Stew?
 One of the Mission Home neighbors.
She is 90, just like Grandma Grimm
 Inside a hotel in Tamale while touring medical facilities.
We stayed here one night.
 Same Hotel
 Baptismal font in Tamale
 Baptism in Mampong...check out the font.
This is a spectacular view from the chapel in Obuasi
Avocados in our front yard. They are the size of softballs.
Local market where we buy vegies.
Can anyone identify the prickly thing???
Street vendor cutting coconuts to sell. Wish you could see. He holds the coconut in his left hand, and whacks at it with a huge machete. Also note the fence to keep people off the median strip. That has got to go! Where do I go to file a complaint? 

To market To market...gigity jog
I think... or its someones pet.
Sister Barney waiting for her next patient at the Obuasi Chapel
We gave this young man (neighbor boy) 5 cidis, a Friend Magazine
and a piece of candy to clean up trash in front of our apartment.
He did a great job, and was excited to be paid. 
He said he wants to buy a football (soccer).
Pounding FuFu by the pros.
You smash my hand and your dead meat!
The neighbor again. She is too funny. Sister Barney  actually went back another day to just to get her smile. We got a video of her singing and dancing. It is priceless.