We are in Ghana and have been since Tues Afternoon. It is the cool season so its is only about 90 degrees. We are staying in the Temple patrons housing until an apartment can be found close to the temporary mission office, to be established. The housing here is clean and bug free and has AC, a premium in this country. This is the fist night we have been home before 9pm. Wed night we went shopping, we left the office at 5pm and spent 45 minutes shopping, the remainder of the time was spent in traffic (about 4-5 miles) of nothing but traffic. We are shadowing the Accra East Mission office couple and they have been driving each day, but tomorrow I have to start with a stick shift, diesel mini van. The traffic is so horrendous that I am very worried I will wreck the new van the first day, hope not. Tomorrow is our P day, so we will arise clean the apartment, do our wash, then travel to our new temporary mission office to arrange furniture. Our mission President will arrive sometime around the first of July and our assignment is to have the mission going, with missionaries, apartments, bikes, etc.. I have to balance the books, find and contract apartments, inspect the current apartments and keep the apartments stocked for about 150 missionaries, take care of the cars, while Heidi is the secretary, arranging transfers, writing to parents, recording baptisms, referrals and being a loving grandparent to 150 elders and sisters.
We have two other couples, one a Dr. who will be helping teach at the Ensign physicians school, organized by a native LDS Doctor who wants to help with the serious needs here. There is poverty everywhere. When you go to the hospital you'd better hope you are in good terms with family as they provide your meals, if you get them, same at prison. We are in the main city of Accra, but part of our mission will include the bush. Elder and Sisters do sleep under mosquito netting, some cook on open fires, or 4 burner stoves, and many have power and water outages on a weekly basis sometimes for the entire week. We currently are experiencing a AC outage, but we have a fan. North American food is very expensive, when you find it. We are eating rice tonight, last night scrambled eggs and a Mango. Breakfast is usually oatmeal as a box of cold cereal is about $10.00 USD. We have to Clorox all of our food. We have bottled water here but do not know what we will have when we move to a new apartment. For now we live in the Temple compound with 24 hour security, for safety. The saints come from all over Africa to bring their families to the temple to be sealed. For many this is a once in a lifetime experience. Some travel for 3 days, cooking, eating and sleeping along the road where the bus stops. The saints are wonderfully faithful and good people. In fact the people of Ghana seem like goodly people. Some are just like home. Today while walking between the mission office and Temple compound )about 1 mile) we stopped to buy some cherry soda from a 6-7 year old boy with his little brother, who sits along the road in the dirt. I dare say he had probably made one sale all day, ours. We also scared a little girl about 3 waiting with her baby sitter outside the temple, we suspect she had not seen a white person before. I awoke at 2:30am today and am very tired. Heidi said we have not adjusted to the new time yet, but I was worrying about all there is to do. Me I am just worried about the vultures sitting on the light post outside our building, they were looking hungry and I have to stick with my slow running companion.
We feel very fortunate to be serving the Lord and his children. We send our love and testify that Jesus is the Messiah, and he has restored his plan of happiness.
Terry and Heidi