Monday, August 24, 2015

Turning Down a Gear

In Japanese there's a phrase: お疲れ様です! There really isn't a translation for it, but the best I can do is, "keep up the great work!"

We've played a bit of chess and Shogi (Japanese Chess) lately, and
these two photos are of my first two ever wins in Japanese chess
(consecutively). They probably don't mean much to you, but I was
pretty happy.

Hachinohe can get quite windy at times. As I have biked around in the
wind and other weather, I think that it is interesting to note that
sometimes when the wind gets strong, going down a gear helps you more.
Too often, I think, we are used to the automatic route. Automatic
transmission in cars, automatic lighting, even instant food is
available to most of us. So, when the going gets tough in a car, we
usually think push harder. I've quickly learned that that isn't always
best. There are times when, honestly, less can be a lot more effective
than more. Don't forget to enjoy the beauty of the Earth around you!
God didn't make it for nothing, He made it for Man to enjoy.

The Kanji of the week is: 祝福師の祝福 pronounced
"shh-coo-fh-coo-shi-no-shh-coo-fh-coo," and means Patriarchal
A delicious meal made by my lovely companion. There is
corn soup on the bottom, and the top is his "special." Yes, that's a
raw egg in the food. I've come to really love the taste of raw egg.

Monday we didn't do much except for email and shopping for food. That
was fine though, because it meant we had time to relax and not have
anything to worry about. In the evening we went housing for a bit, and
then went to the church for Family Home Evening. As no one showed up
for half an hour, we went home after that, and looked at some
potential investigator records.

Tuesday I went to Misawa on companion exchange. There was a lot of
things we did, including visiting a couple of members and eating lots
of snacks they gave us, and teaching Japanese Class. The reason for
the Japanese class, is that there is a US air force base in Misawa, so
there are Americans who come to learn Japanese. On top of that, I got
to go on base with a member and got a taste of America. All I can say
is it was a giant reverse culture shock experience, and I learned just
a taste of how much I've grown un-accustomed to the bigness of
A pizza that we had while I was on base in Misawa. I
couldn't eat more than two pieces (I also had a big lunch and nonstop
snacks from members up until that point just about), and my stomach
has shrunk. It was so weird not seeing hardly any Japanese people,
everything was in English, and the pizza was actual american pizza.
There was also a "small wal-mart," which wasn't actually a wal-mart,
nor did I think it was small. I am in for a big shock when I come

Wednesday we didn't get too much in. We went streeting for a little
bit, but there was no fruits from that, and after that all we really
had time for was English class. But that was fun, as always.

Thursday we did weekly planning. As has been the case the last little
while, it has taken a bit longer to make sure that both of us are on
the same page while planning because of the language difference, but
all is well, and there were no arguments. The remainder of the time
was trying to find a building for information on a sign language
circle, and trying to find places to street or house. But no luck on
that day either.
A  cool flower I saw in Aomori and thought I should take a
picture of.

Friday was Zone Conference, and it was great. I am always amazed at
the spirit that is felt at zone conferences, and I learned a lot. I
also learned a bit more about talking to others on the street, and
about not worrying about what to say, but to just talk and my mouth
will be filled by the grace of God. That's hard work though, I'll have
you know!

Saturday my companion woke up with a sore neck, and couldn't move it
much. We called the mission president and he told him to keep the neck
warmed up, and to take some ibuprofen. He was a bit reluctant on the
medicine side, as all we had was American ibuprofen which is
apparently stronger than Japanese medicine, but He took it, and rested
a bit. By the time that English time came around though, he still
wasn't feeling good enough to actually move his neck freely, so we
spent the rest of the day looking at potential investigators records,
and old investigator records. We have some people we want to visit
now, so hopefully something goes on with that.
A cool cup thing going on in McDonalds right now in
Japan, along with a vintage sign for coke. I wanted just the coke
sign, but I didn't have my actual camera, so I just used the iPad
camera at a distance.

Sunday was great as always. The sacrament is as precious to me as it
always is, and I am so grateful for Christ forgiving me of my sins
against His commandments as long as I repent with an honest heart. Our
recent convert's brother also got back from college, and so he'll be
translating for him while he's here as he speaks Japanese. The rest
of the day was studying, but it was good studies, so I think it was
worth it.

That's my week! I hope you all have a wonderful week this week, and
that you all experience something new. I love you all, and I hope that
you all know that.


Elder _______

The happy birthday banner you sent me back in February
being used for Elder T's birthday (it was the 20th). If you
look in the reflection, you can see me taking the picture.
Zone Conference

1 comment:

  1. Oh gosh this was fun to read! :D I am so excited to get to read Mindy's letters from Japan soon! She is on a plane today, headed for Tokyo! :) Thanks for sharing your son's letter! I hope you have a wonderful Sabbath today, Valerie! :)


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