Tuesday, June 4, 2013


Hey Everyone,
…I am really enjoying my experience so far, but my first thought when I got off the plane was "Wow. Hot and humid."  … The ride over from the airport was crazy.  The driver… had to rock back and forth to make sure that the van didn't stall when we were going 5 mph.  We passed by people who were carrying things on their head to sell, and they kept on coming up to the van when we were stopped, just staring into the window and pointing to their goods.  Apparently, they only get $5 a day by doing it, but I've been told that everyone is just happy to have a job.  I told the Elder… [from Ghana] that in America, the government pays people if they don't work.  He replied with "They lazy. That not good." 
     That's one of the things here that I need to get used to, the language.  When dad gave me the father's blessing and said "I bless you that you may understand their language," I thought to myself, "What the heck does that mean?" But now I know.  Everyone calls me "Elder Tveedee" because they can't pronounce the W at all, so I guess it's back to the roots.  … It seems as if they talk mostly with their lips …, so it's harder to understand because the words just mush together.  I'm already pretty used to it, although I still have a hard time understand the Elders from Sierra Leon.  I don't even think they're speaking English.
     I have really had a wonderful time so far, although they have rice for every meal. As the Africans say it, "Rice rice rice! That's all we get is rice!"  I hope that when I go to Kumasi, I'll be able to choose from a wider variety of food.  If not, I guess it's just rice rice rice for me. 
     We were able to go to the temple today, and I was overwhelmed by how beautiful it is with the fan trees and plants leading up to it.  The baptismal font is made out of black stone, and paintings on the walls showed the African landscape.  It really was a wonderful place, and I felt the Spirit so strongly there.
     The people here love to sing.  When we were in the van, people were singing.  When bedtime comes around, people are singing.  When we're eating, people are singing. Singing singing singing.  And they don't care what they sound like.  If we have a hymn to sing before lessons, everyone sings from their hearts, and the room fills up with music.  … They make me play the piano for the services, because that skill isn't very common here.  Many Elders have come up to me to say "Elder Tveedee, teach me. Teach me the organ." They really love their music.
     My time is running out to write, so I want to close with this. I know that this is where I'm supposed to be, and I can feel the Spirit so strongly here.  I am grateful to be called to the Ghana Kumasi mission, and I can already tell that I will love the people.  Two years will not be enough time.
…I appreciate all of the support and love that you all have shown me.  I hope to be a great missionary (I am praying at least 20 times a day, whether it be with a companion, by myself, or with a larger group).  I'll e-mail you in about a week.  I'm leaving the MTC next Wednesday!
Elder Twede

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