Monday, August 15, 2016

Last Days in West Africa

August 15, 2016

Saturday evening E/S Wollenzien come by the hotel so that we could buy them dinner as a thank you for all their assistance. On Sunday they picked us up and we drove to the nearest Church Branch, which was not far away.  They were meeting in a nice, converted home.  It looked like they had added something onto the front of the home to make a nice, large chapel.  We were overwhelmed with the friendliness of this Branch.  We were surprised that there were three missionary companionships—each consisted of and American (from AZ, ID & UT) and an African.  I asked about the 3 sets being there and they said that they had a lot of activity in the area!  Still, I had never seen that many missionaries in one Branch before.  During the meeting they had two confirmations, and one other man was given the Aaronic Priesthood, so he obviously was a new member also.  I can’t believe how great the work is here!

The added on part of the converted home, so that they could have a nice, large chapel.  There are bars on all windows and doors to deter theft; but they often figure out a way, usually through the roof.

We drove back to the hotel and finished packing and checked out.  We departed for the airport and arrived a bit early.  It was raining, and we wanted to be sure that we didn’t have any problems as sometimes that road washes out and it takes a long time to take another road to the airport.

Our flight wasn’t too bad coming back here to Accra, even though they picked us up in Liberia, flew us back to Sierra Leone where we sat for almost an hour, and then flew us back to Accra for two hours for a total of 4½ hrs.  Even though it didn’t seem terrible, by the time E/S Baker picked us up at the airport, I looked like I’d been on the two long trips home—I was a whipped doggy.  The next morning Elder Baker said that it looked like I had been ‘resurrected.’  Showers and sleep seem to do that for me.

The Baker’s work in the office here in Accra, but are over West Africa water and sanitation projects as assistants to John Buah.  John is Ghanaian and Baker’s are here on a mission for 23 months and are from Idaho.  They had invited us to stay with them instead of going to a hotel, so they brought us back to their two-bedroom apartment.  It is a nice place and had a wonderful shower, and Sister Baker fixed us homemade food that was delicious!  Having 13 children keeps her in the ‘taking care of you’ mode. 

Comfortable living area and dining table.  Two nice bedrooms and a lovely balcony.  There is a pool in this complex and several of the couples live here.  It is close to the airport, but not as close to the office. 

Balcony, at Baker’s apartment.  Jim said that the water in the complex’s pool was quite warm.

The next morning we drove with them to the office and hung out till we met up with our friends, Wendell and Mary Herr who are serving in an area that is 1 hour away from the office.  We served with them in Kenya so many years ago.  They are now on their 5th mission since then, and she said she is ready to retire, but they have a while yet to go.  Well, at least she is ready to retire from serving in Africa!  They looked great!  We had lunch downstairs in the cafeteria at the office and enjoyed talking about our old and new adventures.

Meeting up with old friends, Wendell and Mary Herr!  We served with them a dozen years ago in Kenya.  They are now working with Branches doing MLS an hour away from the Accra office.  This is their 5th full-time mission.

Afterwards we had our visit with John Buah, reporting back about our travels, even though he has seen our reports.  He is lovely to work with!

We had nothing left to do, so by 3 PM we were back at the apartment.  Baker’s didn’t seem too upset that we brought them home early; they were happy for a rest! 

We were able to take a nap, shower, pack, have a wonderful meal again, and then departed for the airport.  They live very close by.  It is as always, great to be going home!


From West Africa

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