Saturday, April 19, 2014

Week 60 Spring Kimono

We went to Kasuisai, a huge shrine in our area. It was incredibly beautiful. We felt like were in some fantasy video game where if you explore you can find all sorts of treasures and secret places. There were many places that we found in the compound, including a graveyard. Since I'm dying (my mission is ending soon) We decided to take a death picture of me (see first picture). We also took a picture in front of the fish pond guardian (see second picture). Elder Chiba had to run very fast to make it into the picture. After that we went to teach some investigators.When we got there, they were just getting ready to go out. They had forgotten that we were coming. So we set up another appointment and then housed around the area. We knocked on one door and a lady popped out and said, "I know who you are! I want you to teach my kid English. Can I have your number? And a pamphlet?" We gladly turned them over to her. 
We went with a member to an investigator lesson. The investigator said that because of things that she read on the internet she has a hard time believing the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith's experience. We encouraged her to read for her own opinion. She said that she wanted a month of not meeting with the missionaries. Then, during that month, she would read the Book of Mormon. At the end of this month we will meet with her again and see. The member made home made eggrolls (I watched to see how they're made, so we can try to make them when I'm home) and then we had to go to another member's appointment. We were expecting to just talk, but we got fed a lot of food. On heavy stomachs we had to ride our bikes from one side of our area to the other to teach some investigators. Almost as soon as we started the lesson, the mom asked us about Joseph Smith. She had been reading the pamphlet. We watched the restoration video with them and gave them a Book of Mormon. 
The lesson at Eikaiwa was on slang. Our students were very happy to learn, but they still have trouble using it because they are used to textbook English. Sister Oda wrote a conversation in textbook English and in slang. It was amusing to see them side by side. We went out to visit PI's, no such luck. So we came home, had dinner, and then went to Game night. There were fewer kids, but we were the only adults there. We taught them duck duck goose. The kids then turned it into duck duck bunny. I couldn't get good traction in my shoes so I slipped and got rug burn on my knee. 
We bought materials for an egg dying activity and for an egg hunt activity. Namely vinegar, food coloring, eggs, and chocolate. We wanted to do a practice lesson with a member, but it turned into the member practicing teaching us. She has a huge desire to share the gospel. She is awesome. Then at Eikaiwa, we had a new person come. He is studying medicine and he wanted our help for a presentation in English that he is giving at the end of the month. He wanted a native speaker to read over what he wrote, correct any mistakes, and then read it out loud so that he could practice pronunciation. There were many medical terms that were hard to read, but we tried our best. Most of the students liked the deviled eggs we made out of the Easter egg hunt eggs, but one student tried one, pulled a face, and refused any more. 
Zone Training Meeting. I was asked to translate for the Japanese missionaries. It was hard to make myself heard without overbearing the people who were speaking. The people speaking were WAY TOO FAST. I could not keep up at all. I feel sorry for the Japanese missionaries and my poor translation. Not only could I not keep up, I didn't know some of the terms in Japanese that the English speakers were using. Plus I had to simplify a lot of stuff. Afterwards, we went to a Japanese food buffet. They had good tempura and chirashizushi and good pudding. Unfortunately our appointment canceled on us so we had to make some changes in our plans.
We went with a PI to a tiny little festival in the northern part of our area. She dressed us in kimono's and drove us up there. Then we rode in a rickshaw! (I'll send the pictures in another e-mail.) We got a lot of comments and a lot of stares. (Two foreigners in kimonos in this tiny town?) I bought a hand carved model of a shrine. We also bought pita pockets. Go to a Japanese festival and buy Pakistani food. Go figure. I was fine walking in the geta (the special Japanese sandals) but Oda Shimai was dying so we went to a cafe so she could change. We got tofu meatloaf. It was surprisingly good. Then we had to rush to the church to meet with a member. We watched legacy with her and talked about church history. She has been a member for only 3 years, so she still has many questions. Then we got a call out of the blue from our investigators asking if we would come over and make chocolate with them. We of course said yes, but we were already running late for our next appointment. We get to a less active's house half an hour late, and then she makes us wait half an hour while she finishes up some bill paying and then starts talking to us. We talked for a short while and then we blasted out of there to get to our investigators. We made chocolate truffles and then reviewed what we had talked about last time. The amazing part is that the dad was home that time and he came in of his own volition and talked with us. He had many questions about the Book of Mormon. We encouraged them to read it as a family and to pray about it as a family. When we left, we felt the joy and satisfaction that comes of missionary work. Oh to feel like that all the time. I got my flight plans. It was sad to read the letter. I kind of don't want to think about it but I know that I'll have to do so some time...
A man showed up at church just wondering what the inside was like. We gladly took him in and talked with him. I think the Elders were a little too excited because he expressed some feelings of pressure. He said that he loved the music, especially Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam (as sung in sacrament meeting). We were about to go out after lunch to visit some investigators when I got a call from another sister who was in emotional distress. I talked to her for a while and encouraged her to call President Yamashita. We visited our investigators, not home. I made omelette rice for dinner (fried rice with an egg on top). Very satisfying after a day of fasting. Then we went to a less active's home and watched Legacy (two days in a row) with her. In the middle, her niece came over. Her niece expressed a desire to learn English and we said that we would gladly teach her. Potential Investigator, wohoo! 

Love you,

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