Sunday, March 8, 2015

3/8/2015 - Hobbies, Repairs, Ophthalmologist

The missionaries in Gabon have been told to slow down by Elder Cook, our Area President and member of the First Quorum of Seventy!  They have baptized too many people and there aren’t enough trained leaders.  The country was opened to missionary work about a year ago.

The plaster on our apartment walls has been deteriorating in a few places due to the humidity.  So the landlord sent a workman over to fix it up.  That kept us at home for two days while he worked.   
Rafael and Junior getting started fixing our walls

While we were hanging out, Noah came over to introduce an aunt, Mandeng Diane.  We taught her a missionary lesson and had a nice long visit.
I asked them if people here have hobbies.  Of course, they said.  So I wrote down the ones that they came up with:
  Taking walks (This really surprised me.  It’s a hobby?)
  Visiting (Hey old friend, you’re my hobby today!)
  TV (If they have a TV, it is always on.)
  Soccer (Definitely.)
  Swimming (Some hotels have pools; and some cities are by the sea.  Not the river, heavens, no!)
  Tennis (Noah played once and was “very good.”  We haven’t seen any actual tennis courts.)
  Reading (There is one French Institute library in town.)
  Dancing (discotheque)
  Visiting their village (At least once a year, great hobby enjoyed by everyone)
  Jogging (Definitely, often in large groups.)

I asked about camping.  No, he said, everybody lives near the jungle and nobody is interested in going away to camp in a different jungle.  I guess when you cook on a wood fire at home there is no adventure in a campfire, either.

The Su’s also came over to visit because they missed our last Strengthening Marriage class.  So we taught them what they missed and had a long visit.

We visited Sonya Nkong and her beautiful one-week-old daughter and brought a meal.  I should have written down the baby's African name.
One-week-old Nkong baby

We took Elder Mwehu to an ophthalmologist for his eye problems.  The doctor and equipment seemed very modern.  Those big machines seemed to make our Congolese Elder very nervous and the air puffs scared him to death.  There were no problems found, except that he needs glasses.
Does your ophthalmologist have a painting of scary masks?

We visited Leonel and his partner again.  They explained why we have never seen a movie theater here.  The government banned them in 2009.  Since then people can occasionally see a movie on TV or buy a DVD, but few good DVDs are available.  So they want to make movies.  (Douallywood?)  They wanted to run an idea for a fictional movie past us to see if it would sell in the USA.  Here’s their idea:
An African decides to return to his village after growing up in the city.  He has trouble learning and living with all of the tribal and village traditions.
We told them that it wouldn’t sell in America.  Even if they showed real traditions, Americans wouldn’t find them credible and would find the film boring.  But if they included an American and made the film non-fiction they could sell it as preserving a record of African traditions and Americans would love it.

We watched The Princess Bride with about 35 Bonaberi Branch members Friday night.  They loved it because it had such a good moral and they want to watch it again sometime.  Before the feature film we showed a bunch of Mormon Messages and I’m a Mormon clips.

We taught the Temple Prep class in the Douala Branch and had a few new people.  We had to cancel the music directing class because the Sunday School president, Fr. Njembele, hadn’t been consulted by the branch presidency, so he overruled them.  There is still no electricity, but the hot, stuffy meetings are surprisingly still crowded with branch members and investigators.  Africans are tough.

Happy International Women's Day!  It is a big celebration here every 8th of March.
The Douala music chairman, Therèse Matio

Guys, where are your seat belts?

Just a random taxi photo

Getting our truck's oil changed - clean & modern gas station

1 comment:

  1. Bless you for the good work you are doing on your mission! The gift of eyesight is such an important and valuable type of charity to bring to these people. It is also really sad to hear that their government banned movie theaters. I wonder why they wouldn't want their people to have art. It's sad to think how much some have to struggle.

    Doris Gibbs @ Moody Eyes