Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Rat & Cat.... oh my!

 So I am teaching these 3 guys from Nigeria, and one of them is crazy. So he has promised to cook me cat sometime when I come over. My companion is scared of it, but I am totally going to try it!  Also today I had RAT!  Yeah the rats here are huge!   The one we got was small, and it was still easily a foot long. We had light out and it was running around outside and somehow my companion clubbed it with a 2x4.   None of us understood that and now he won't eat it.  But another guy from Nigeria cooked it, and today We were the only ones to eat it.

I have had 3 meals from people this week: 2 times of fufu and one of rice. Both times with the fufu I totally threw it down! I barely even gag anymore!  So that's a good thing, but I easily liked the rice the best!
This week was pretty short, but that could be because I had "a day off."  Mom read that part.  Everyone else read this part. (He must have forgotten that Mom is the one who posts this for him!!) This week was pretty short, but that could be because I had a Malaria Scare. I was getting ready and all of a sudden I started vomiting really bad and it just kept coming and I had a fever at 100.2 and my body was achy.  So I ended up just having to sleep all day. I didn't eat anything until dinner, but I was a little better the next day and I got to go proselyte.  So we decided it wasn't Malaria. It was a nice day because my body definitely did need the rest!
They don't do much for holidays here.  There are a few but not any of the good ones that we have back home. I think New Year may be kind of big, but so far the biggest deal was when Ghana was playing in the World Cup Qualifiers. That was a big deal and lots of people went crazy when they scored. People were running through the streets just screaming!  Trunk or Treat sounds way fun! I wish we did that here, but there isn't really candy here and people in Ghana don't like sugar very much. If you send me candy and I have an African companion then they probably won't eat it because it is too sweet! 
The kind of bread we have is sugar bread.  Sugar bread and butter bread and tea bread are the main types of bread we have here.  Sugar bread is just like bread but it tastes a tiny bit like sugar.  Butter bread is the same, but it tastes a bit like butter.  And tea bread is much smaller and you usually use it for a sandwich from some sort of street vendor. Mercy is the bread girl's name.  Every day that I want the bread, I tell her at lunch time and she has it all ready for me by dinner! 
 Oh and by the way if you feel the need to complain about 70 degrees you shouldn't.  You should come here because its soo hot.  It doesn't even get down to 70 at night! We had light off the other night and it was so hot without our fans that each of us only got maybe 2 hours of sleep. Yeah we need a personal fan blowing on each of our beds!
Elder Kanu has kind of been a butt this week too. Since I'm getting used to teaching and whatnot, I am supposed to teach most of the lessons at this point.  But I end up teaching the entire lesson while Elder Kanu either sleeps or plays with little kids. Any time he feels like coming in he usually just repeats everything I just said and confuses the investigator. Also I didn't get to go play football today because He didn't want to leave the apartment and everyone else was going. After he got done yelling for no reason I just went to the roof and read the rest of 1st Nephi. I think President Hill is aware and I am pretty sure that is why I was picked to be with ELder Kanu. I should know more by next week though.
 In my MTC there were 90 something kids, but like 30 of them were on a different time schedule because they were French speaking Missionaries. 
When we email we do it at this little dinky cafe where there is just a bunch of computers and you pay 2 cedi for 2 hours of internet time. It looks like if they took the area of a library where the computers were and put them in a small 1 room building.
Okay and by the way we have a new wife hunt update.  So mom while you are out trying to find me the one (I didn't know I was!!), there are some pretty difficult requirements.  I heard tale of a type of female in the far away majestic land of Kenya. These ultimate wives are the women of the Masi (mass-eye).
Wife qualifications:
1. Extremely attractive
2. Cooks every meal without complaint
3. Cleans the house every day and keeps everything clean
4. Every day after work she bathes you without any effort on your part.
Yeah us Americans were pretty shocked by a woman like that actually existing, so now you have to find me the American version of that! Challenge accepted!

Friday, October 25, 2013

Elder Legg in the Flesh!!

This week in Ghana

*  Oh Oh we got to go teach at a school this week!  The schools here hold a worship thing every Wednesday, so all 6 of us got to go and teach the school for an hour.  They start with a prayer and they sing some sweet songs. When you have drums going and everybody is singing and chanting and all of the little kids are dancing around you, you know you are getting the full African experience! It was so incredible that we had them sing it again.  At the end, us three white elders were running around and dancing with them.  Our companions didn't want to join in, but we had a lot of fun!

*   Yeah if I get worms here it's not that big of a deal. I'm supposed to deworm like every 6 months here so it isn't that much of a worry. Malaria I am not to worried about so far, but I'm sure it can make things difficult. 
 * I haven' tried to use my card yet. Actually I ran out of subsistence this week so for about 5 days I had Indomie every meal. Indomie is the Ghanaian version of ramen noodles so I'm not actually complaining but after a few days it'd make you sick. It's 20 Cedi for a box of 4 packets. I mean I had 90 in personal money but I just wanted to see if I could make it and I had to use 40 for our energy because we ran out. Yeah we got more money today which was nice, so I got money for our fried rice lady. Since the white missionaries are really nice to her, she always gives us extra and sometimes extra pieces of chicken which is super cool of her. Also Elder Robertson gave me a Barcelona Jersey its a really cheap one but I'll probably buy a couple more while I'm here. I think I have decided I need to buy jerseys, shorts, a watch, sunglasses, shoes, and pants.  Those will most likely be a few of my souvenirs.

  *  Nope I definitely have fuzzy teeth all of the time, no matter what and I am probably going to have a lot of cavities when I get home.

* I can't wait to get your letters that will be so cool! 

* It was Strawberry Ice cream. It tastes different than back home and it's a little more runny. I buy the vanilla kind off the street sometimes. Of course we have refrigerators here! Where else are we supposed to keep our stuff cold?! Also we have 2 microwaves and a gas stove and a washing machine. 
* Haha yeah the only hunting we might do here is, the other guys said, that if I can get a goat into our compound then we can kill it and eat it. Holy cow you have no idea how hard that is. I think I could kill one faster with a banana leaf.
*  Dude I ate all of my pepperoni sticks here and they were way good. It really sucks not having just snacks I either have to go out and buy food or I have to cook it which takes so long!

*   Good luck with that primary program.  We had ours this week which was really... cool? haha it was funny when the kids would just say amen after everything and the adults would yell it back. Actually I got to go to primary this week and sing songs with them which was fun. We sang I am a child of God and If you're happy and you know it. Also then the primary gave us snacks which was awesome because we were starving! :P
*   Also this week I got to go on exchanges with Elder Schmeltzer which was so nice. We went to his area and I got to see all sorts of other things that aren't in my area and even though most of our appointments failed we still had fun and did work. The break from Elder Kanu was much appreciated. 
*  Elder Kanu is really hard to deal with, like almost everyone in our apartment has an issue with him. other than knowing the scriptures, I am basically already a better missionary than him. He honestly has no Idea how to plan correctly or how to companion study or how to teach me. Most of our lessons are just me talking and him repeating what I have said. He is really rude also. That is mostly because he is from Nigeria and he keeps acting like hes better than everyone else and he has something to prove. It's sad though. I can tell he's not here for the right reason. He just is out here for the honor to himself. He isn't here for the Lord and he talks about wishing he was home every day. I guess there is a reason I am with him, but we shall see. Yeah the one thing I am praying for is that If I keep working hard then I will be blessed to train soon after, and that will be kind of like a fresh start.

*   We got Disney monopoly this week and we play it pretty much every night. I've played 3 games so far and I have won 3 games so far :) not trying to brag or anything, but I am the greatest!

*   This week hasn't been all fun and games though. I took a nasty elbow to the face in football--from Kanu and my mouth was really bloody and my cheek is swollen. Also for the last week and a half about I've had a pretty nasty cold so I've been popping the pills.  It got bad enough one day that we had to turn in early one day which wasn't good. Oh well we are still working hard and just trying to push through. 

*  Oh by the way, I had another baptism yesterday if you want to add that to the blog and I am one month done already!!!

This is the Blog address for Trav's whole mission
There are some awesome picture of him and others on this blog.  You can get a better feel for the people there.  Check it out as well!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Ghana's Getting Better!

 * My schedule:  Up at 630 a get ready till 8 study and plan for the day 11 head out and walk 30 minutes to get to our area then either teach some people or do a crap ton of contacting and teach those people. We take a break for lunch in between 2 and 5 then go out for a little bit more. We are supposed to be out until 9 but it gets totally dark at 6 and there is only so much we can do at that point. Especially when the power is out and you cant really read or teach so we are usually back a little before 8 and just take our dinner then. Then until like 1030 we hang out like a bunch of 19 and 21 year old guys in an apartment together.
That's really nice.
* We had no general conference here. So no idea how it was. 

*  We actually got to play soccer today at the chapel with the district that shares our building it was a ton of fun but I got so soaked. Like honestly my entire shirt was wet and you could see the difference. It is so much fun since only one elder in our apartment didn't play before he came but he still tries and he works hard so we all have a good time. 
* One of the investigators that's in our ward his job his people pay him 50 peswas or something and he lets them stand on his scale and he weighs them. We found out I am the 2nd heaviest guy in the apartment. Elder Kanu is the heaviest at 85. Me and another guy were 75 and two others were 65 one guy didn't weigh but he is definitely the smallest. Oh and that's in kilograms so I have gained weight since I have been out here.
*Honestly I kind of wish that my blessing had a little more to do with the language because this Tri thing is really hard but I have some of the basics and I can greet people well enough and I can insult them. They don't have any cuss words in that language so aquasia is the worst thing you can call someone and it only means fool. For some reason fool, stupid and crazy are extremely offensive here which isn't helpful at all.
   * Yeah we don't have any festive decorations except like a birthday banner that has been up for a few months I guess. We might have some Christmas ones to put up in a little bit but its not like we will actually celebrate any holidays here.
*Yeah there are plenty of things that make this soo hard and if I had a different mentality I could see it being too hard but I honestly don't really have any serious thoughts of going home other than when it happens in 2 years. It is a lot of fun with these guys and a mission is just my life its not like I can or would change that!
* His first name Ogban so Elder Ogban Kanu. I have been struggling with him. Its been 5 days since he's actually said I've done anything good so I hear a list of things that I need to change. It gets hard because he says If I am humble a mission will be easy so I have been trying really hard to be humble but he just keeps putting me down and I don't think I deserve that. If I was doing something wrong or I was just messing around it would make more sense  but I am honestly trying my best. Oh and something else I've learned by discussion with my District and Zone leaders is that He has had some bad companions and I was specifically picked as a strong trainee to come and put him on the right track. I have been picked out of 90 kids as the only one sent to train his trainer. Isn't that so nice!
* I had a Free meal  on Monday and yesterday which was cool and not so much so Monday.  It was at this rich families house so we had tons of rice and chicken and a couple liters of mineral (pop) and all 6 of us couldn't finish it then the lady brought out a tub of ice cream and a big bowl of pineapple and some cake. Holy cow we had an hour walk home and I almost died! Soo much food. I ate 3 plates of rice and chicken and 3 bowls of ice cream with cake and pineapple on top!
  Then at our free meal yesterday we had Banku which is a stew with cooked fish that has been mutilated and put in then you have this weird stuff almost like bread dough that you pull apart and eat with the stew. I almost got sick when I pulled a full decayed fish heads out of my stew and the time I stuffed a whole fish tail in my mouth. I still ate until I was full. I can't stand Banku or Fufu but I can kind of handle Eba.  They are all pretty similar, but the stews are slightly different and the squishiness of the bread dough stuff varies and how it's prepared is a tiny bit different, but basically they are all the same meal.
* This week Elder Kanu and I contacted 115 people. Some people may say that's a little over zealous, but I just say its him making fun of me and my inability to talk Tri. Our zone leaders only had 70 and their area has hardly any investigators and is almost entirely contacting.
  Saturday we had an open house at the church so in the morning we helped McCarthy Hill ward do theirs and so the members are inside with a bunch of posters and they talk all about the church then the missionaries are out street contacting their butts off trying to get everyone to go inside the church. McCarthy hill ward was 9-12 am then ours Odokor Ward was 6-8 and yes our district got more people through. Also since the chapel is in my area out of the 130ish names I think I have technical rights to at least 70 new investigators. Sadly the Zone leaders need more investigators so we are splitting the names up evenly in our district. 
*I am already getting super tan which is fun because I am already as tan as the 2 other white elders that have been here for 18 months and they both got really bad sunburns Saturday but I did not! I love my skin.
* I am training one of our shop ladies so that I will see her in the morning and tell her to save me a loaf of sugar bread and then when I come by in the evening, even though all of their bread is sold out, she has a 1 left for me all packaged up and ready to go behind the counter.
* Oh yeah and for when you guys decide to send me packages the things I will need Is 2 years worth of anti-Diarrhea medicine and pictures of home and money haha we barely have enough to scrape by here and that kinda sucks. Yeah but that medicine is pretty important, I have literally had runny tummy every day since I got into the field and the other missionaries have it most of the time too :) 
Pictures won't send, so when this memory card gets full you will need to send me another one and I will just mail you this one.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Today's News

*We played a lot of soccer at the MTC and it was pretty fun.  Ribs knocked out of place are always the best because they doing hurt very much once you get the reset!

*Yeah now in the field Its Me and Elder Kanu from Nigeria. Elder Ogiembo From Kenya and Elder Robertson from UK, they're the Zone Leaders. And Elder Uwabi from Nigeria and Elder Schmeltzer from America. I think most of the Africans stay in Africa and they just know that. They all just plan on going there I think. Its pretty rare for one to go somewhere like the United states. Oh and Elder Bori's name was Friday Kelly Bori.

*Some things are a little cheaper and some things are more expensive. food is about 2 GHC a meal which is only one dollar but as missionaries we only get 6.5 GHC a day so with other expenses added in you don't have nearly enough money.
   * My Trainer is Elder Kanu and he is also from Nigeria. I got him because I am one of the missionaries that is actually good at understanding the accents and President Hill thought we would be a good match. 
*I told you the guys in my apartment and they are all pretty cool. Its really sad like our compound is a really nice one but honestly our apartment is crap and you guys have no idea. we do have filtered water and a fridge and microwaves which is all nice but you guys wouldn't keep them in your house in a million years!  Oh and we are one of like 2 areas that actually has a washing machine. its not very good but at this point if your clothes aren't totally yellow then you are ready to go.
*OK so this next part I'm going to try and describe the poverty and you guys might be able to picture it but you can truly never understand. So there is trash everywhere. on every road in between houses on houses in sewers just everywhere. The sewers are just open sewers so its basically like the small ditch at our house except its along every road and its filled with poo and trash.
*In our apartment we have 2 bathrooms. kind of 1 working toilet 1 working bathroom sink and 2 working showers. Both toilets technically work but neither of them flush very well and one doesn't refill with water all the way on its own. Oh and there is no temperature on the water. the sink water is regular and the shower water is freezing!
*They have about 6 or 7 different dishes but basically there is just 2 kinds of foods. rice or this playdoh like stuff. So there's fried rice and brown rice and black rice and rice with beans and regular rice. all of them taste pretty similar so it doesn't matter much what you get. next the playdoh stuff. one time is almost seedy and you wet your hands and roll a little ball of it then you dip it in this "soup" that honestly looks like you had the runs and put seasonings and chicken bones in it. Or there is Fufu which is basically the same thing except the playdoh is already in the soup and there's usually fish in it. that one almost made me throw up. I am trying everything but I dont' like the squishy stuff and pretty much everything gives you really bad runny tummy. That's what they call diarrhea.

   *The other guys gave me fair warning that there are 2 things that are almost undoubtedly going to happen to me in the next 2 years. 1 I am probably going to get malaria no matter what I do even if i take my doxy every day and sleep under my net it is still going to happen. and 2 I am going to get runny tummy. Both of those things have happened to almost all of the guys in my apartment.
*We walk many miles every day and its very hot. when it rains here it is like no rain you guys have seen in Idaho but a little bit of my area is rich and some is a little more bush and the church building is in my area which is really nice.
*Oh yeah! I had my first baptism on Saturday. I Baptized A boy named Quami and my investigator Brother Stephen. They were both very happy and it was pretty awesome! so 3 days in and I already have a baptism hmm that sounds like super missionary material to me! :) Yeah I suck at contacting though but oh well that's probably just because no one can understand me!
The whole called to serve in English stuff is a load of bull! you are called to serve in English with an adequate knowledge of Tri.  the language is crazy hard and like half of the people Ghanians don't speak English very well.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Elder Legg in Ghana

Sorry this is not the greatest resolution of this pic - but I had to take a picture of the picture on the computer. At least you get to see Elder Legg and his Mission Pres. and the Pres. Wife!

Travis's Mailing Addresses

This is the information we got from the mission on mailing letters and packages to Trav:

If you want to use the post you have two options.  Address your letters and packages to:

Ghana Accra West Mission
Elder Travis Legg
Box 12741-North Accra

You can take your letter to the post office where they will assign an airmail international stamp in the amount of postage it needs to get to Ghana.  My mom's letter cost $1.78.

"If you mail a package, a flat rate large manila envelope from the US Post Office works well.  The cost is $23 and you can address it, stuff it, and wrap it completely with clear packing tape. We have not had any of these packages opened.  Many times a fee or tax is added to the packages that are opened."

Your second option is to use what is referred to as the Church Pouch mail.  This means of writing is less expensive and requires first-class postage only.  To use the Church Pouch, simply write your letter on one regular sized piece of paper, fold the paper into thirds, and secure it with two pieces of tape.  Please make sure to not use an envelope or include any enclosures.  Address the letter:

Elder Travis Legg
Ghana Accra West Mission
PO Box 30150
Salt Lake City, UT

With either option, they will be delivered to the mission office, then they will be held until someone travels to Travis's area.
I know he loves to receive emails, but real mail would mean the world to him!  Include your physical address so that he can write back.