Monday, January 4, 2016

Welcoming in 2016

"I figured I should get a picture with a chicken--Why not? I see a thousand of them everyday!"
Dear Family, 

I am glad to hear all your news, my week has been great as well. A few highlights:


To start the week off, we had a caroling activity for the zone. On Christmas Eve, President Morin asked me to organize it. With such short notice, we ended up doing after Christmas. We all met up in Calavi. Unfortunately, my taxi was late, and we had to pick up the Cococodji Elders, so that meant about half the zone was late. However, we finally made it and started singing. 

Caroling isn’t really a thing in Africa, so the African Elders found it odd, but people actually really liked it! I bought some Santa hats for the Elders to wear. While they were singing, I distributed candy canes and Pass Along cards with the Calavi Elder's phone number on them. It went really well, and I was able to distribute a good amount of Pass Along cards. Good activity!

Branch Party

We also had our branch Christmas party on the 31st. There was lots of singing, dancing and fun. The missionaries decided to put on a little dance\sketch for everyone. We had my companion, who is still pretty new to the mission, start dancing to a song in his white shirt and tie. We then had one of our branch missionaries stopped him saying, "Wo, wo, wo you don’t know how to dance!" He pretended to call the rest of us on the phone to come teach him how to do it. The rest of us jumped out of the side room wearing boombas and doing the African traditional dance moves the best we could. People loooooved it. 

New Year’s

After the branch party, we got home and counted down to the New Year together at the apartment. We made some cake had some non-alcoholic champagne and a few fireworks, which were nothing compared to all the fireworks that our neighbors bought. I'm not sure how people can afford all the fireworks here--the banging and popping literally didn't stop all night. New Year's definitely is a bigger holiday here than Christmas is.


New Year’s Day we were invited to all sorts of eating appointments. Anyone we saw on the road would invite us to come over and eat with them. We were stuffed by the end of the day, and I spent a loooong time in the bathroom that night =) It was nice to not have to cook for myself, though. I am always very thankful for anyone that is willing to feed us. 

Crazy Voo Doo Guy

Sunday night we stopped by J--'s house and found an old drunk man screaming and waving his hands at J's neighbors, M-- and A--. We tried to intervene, and asked what he was so upset about. However, it seems he really didn’t speak any French. The only French words he could get out were, "I am a man of FORCE." And, "If you see this face, you better RESPECT it, or I’ll call the COPS!" He eventually left and moved further down the road, all the while screaming at no one. So, we were then able to teach M and her family. 

When we left M's house, about 30 minutes later, we asked what the Fon words were for, "Come get this present." They told us, and we proceeded to give the man a restoration brochure. He was very surprised and happy, and then he gave us both hugs and stopped shouting after that. I suppose the gospel really does change people's hearts.

Electronics Curse

And also, I currently have half of a haircut. I cut my own hair with a pair of clippers that I bought at the beginning of my mission, and today is the day they decided to break. (Most of the electronics you can buy here are pretty cheap quality.) Sadly, they decided to break midway through my haircut. I tried to use my P-day (prep day) to go to a barbershop and get a haircut. However, even in Africa, the barbershops shut down on Mondays. 

I’ve also been trying so hard to watch General Conference on our little DVD player, but the disc is scratched. And we've also trying so hard to see, "The Other Side of Heaven" but we have had no luck because it is on a USB card that is in an unsupported format for our DVD player . . . So, I’m really feeling cursed when it comes to electronics lately!

Everything is great. I’m happy. The work is going OK--things slow down around the holidays and there really is nothing you can do about it. I am sure it will pick back up this week. 

Anyways have a great week!

Love you guys,

Elder Walls

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