For the first time in forever:

[email sent 1-19-2016]
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We found a sweet gym.
“For the first time in forever” I got to go and proselyte with a white missionary this last Thursday. It was companionship exchanges (a missionary leader takes the spot of your companion for 24 hours to measure your progress and help train) and I was able to go with Elder Snow, a really cool American missionary who loves the same things as me! Namely, guns, camping, good food, etc… So the entire day was a blast! He goes about his day the way I wish it was done, so we really got along. Even during contacting/finding time, which is really hard in the area I am assigned.
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Hammerton got really rough. I had malaria when this photo was taken.
All of the experienced missionaries I have talked to say that [my area] is the hardest area in the whole mission… So during contacting time my companion and I walk in the heat, in silence, for hours without teaching a single lesson. The time with Elder Snow flew by though. By the time we were heading back to the apartment I thought, “Dang, this day went too fast.” At least I got to have that break for one day. It was nice.
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The first wave of kente ties came in… You bet I ordered more. Pure white ones for the temple too.
This coming Thursday I will be going on an exchange with Elder Snow’s companion though! He is a super sweet Elder as well, so I am excited. Being in the companionship I am now is a learning experience to the max. I am learning what it means to have patience and charity with all men. One of the zone leaders in my apartment said I was one of the most patient people he has ever met, so that gives me courage to keep being the best I can be.

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Behind my big head is where we buy our koko some mornings.
Speaking of growing, I would like to give an update on my night time readings and learning. So far I have read about half of the “Teachings of the presidents of the church” books, the “Our heritage” book, “True to the faith”, “Gospel principles”, both “Duties and blessings of the priesthood” books, most of both of the “Latter-day saint women” books (have to be prepared to teach the women too), half of the Book of Mormon again, and many other books here and there… I love reading, so now that I have directed my readings away from other books to all church books, my understanding of things is a little brighter. Still a long way to go. Good thing I have all eternity to learn.
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My companion loved his package dad.
On the weather side of things, hammerton in Ghana ended way early this year! Yay! So now instead of really dusty, dry, and warm, it’s not so dusty, wet, and superman’s laser beam eyes kind of hot! Haha, as long as I don’t think about the heat and sweat it’s not that bad. Even during personal study before leaving the apartment I was sweating. I know I am earning my meals though! Because “by the sweat of [man’s] brow [we] shall eat…”
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Somehow this package of beef jerky got exposed during it’s trip to Africa and this is the surprise I got.
Anyway, this week was just as unique as the last. My zone went to a waterfall yesterday for P-day, but I’ll tell that story next email… Stay tuned if you want to know more.

Also, I have been receiving your letters and packages and I am very grateful indeed. I just found envelopes after a long search this last week, so I’ll make y’all a deal. If you send me letters, I will send you a letter back.

That’s all for now, folks!

Love,

Elder Whipple

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