Monday, June 23, 2014

Week 51 - "Welcome to Inaka!"

The 400 ft slide!!

Firstly, I AM GONNA MISS PRESIDENT AND SISTER RASMUSSEN SO MUCH!!!!! They were my mission parents and always have been such a superb example to me this last year. I'm so grateful I got to serve with two of the Lord's most valiant servants. They board a plane home this Thursday- and then it's Smith Kaicho (President) and Shimai (Sister)! I had a dream that he was black....and like 112 pounds...weird. I'm pretty sure my subconscious is excited to meet him. We'll do our best to help Smith Kaicho feel our love! He's got big shoes to fill.

President Rasmussen!

I can't believe my mission has gone so fast. I'm so grateful for this opportunity to grow spiritually and try to help the Lord's children.

We celebrated Brother Hass kyoudai's 74th birthday at udon (Japanese noodles) this week! Oh yeah, and Ko shimai and I stumbled on a 400 foot slide. I took a sweet video, I'll show it to you after the mission!!
Aomori Zone!
This week I got to go on a split with my best friend of the mission; KISH!!! I remember when I was a third transfer in Kamisugi and I told her as she got transferred, "It's okay, because you'll get made STL and I'll get transferred back to Aomori and go on splits!" And then it actually happened. 

We went to visit a P.I. (potential investigator) (the drunk guy who couldn't decide whether I was Russian or Brazilian- yeah we went with the elders.) on the SKETCHIEST ROAD I HAVE EVER WRITTEN. It was a MIRACLE none of us got a punctured tire! There was this one point where the road just dropped off into rice fields, and we had to carry our bikes across the rice fields. And then there was a "bridge" where the wood was half rotted off and so we balanced on the rusted beams as we carried our bikes over the river. The craziest part? I wasn't lost; that was the correct "road". At one point, Kish said, "Are you sure you know where we are?!" I turned around and said, "Welcome to inaka(the country)!" It was a party.
Ko Shimai and Orgill Shimai
This week Sister Mi san was unable to come to District Conference, but she really wanted to come and all of the missionaries missed her! I gave a talk and encouraged the members to pick a date, not a person to introduce the gospel to someone, and how setting goals and allowing the Lord to bless me has blessed my mission and my life. I'm grateful for the opportunity to have been able to give a talk. I certainly learned a lot from pondering what to share with the members of Aomori.

We are finding some great P.I.s who are showing great interest in the gospel. We hope good things will come of it in the Lord's timing.

This week was BUSY. We went to Aomori on Tuesday for Zone Conference (our last time seeing the Rasmussens! We sang for them and EVERYONE cried.) and on the train home that night I went crazy doing dendo contacting! Sometimes you just feel like, "Yes, I'm aware that you have headphones in/ you eyes are closed. But Heavenly Father loves you mucho!" I didn't get blocked by the headphones a SINGLE TIME. I felt like I had an invincible shield of gaijin foreign person power. It was super sweet.
Elder No and Elder Ne, my two favorite AP's Assistants to the President of all time!

Do Choro from Australia!
We went BACK to Aomori on Saturday morning for District (Stake) Conference for Saturday and Sunday (we stayed at the Aomori sisters' apt- my first apartment!). I gave a talk Saturday night- two weeks ago the Stake President told me I'd been asked to talk- "from the mission". Ohh, I see you Rasmussen Kaicho. I was the ONLY WHITE PERSON who had to (GOT to) give a talk! Ask my companion, I was a nervous wreck. I had enough adrenaline to lift a Prius off the ground and then fight my way past a mama bear. You could say I was pretty exhausted after. But I think it went really well! And the hugest pluses for getting to see all of the Aomori members and give a talk in from of them were:
1. Japanese confidence! I've never gotten as many compliments on my Japanese in my whole life. The most common one was people just coming up to me with rounded eyes, saying, "I thought you were Japanese." or "Your pronunciation is prettier than mine!" 
2. A feeling of great satisfaction that my 3 months in Aomori made a difference.
Getting to see the members again was so joyous! One family just hovered around me the whole time, telling me how glad they were that they could see me again. One member, 84-year-old Mak shimai came up and start talking to me and Ko shimai. She told me, "That time when you came over and talked to me was the strongest I've felt the Spirit in my entire life. I cannot forget it. You are a powerful missionary." I don't know about that; but I was so grateful to feel like I had made a difference even though I was a very flawed bean (meaning green bean, or new missionary) who couldn't speak the language. I love the members of Aomori!

Best friend Elder Ma!
The Word of the Week! Tougoushicchoushou. It took me a little while to get this one down; it's a bit of a mouthful. But it's none too easy of a word in English either; Schizophrenia! I will pay in large amounts of ika squid? the first person that can say this to me when I get home! MAN I'd be impressed.

Embarrassing moment- Let's be real; I have them almost every week whether I'm willing to admit them or not. This morning I kept trying to shut the fridge without realizing my shirt was caught in the handle which was preventing me from closing it. In a moment of great effort, I attempted to slam the fridge door closed, effectively closing it while slamming myself into the fridge. Win.

Sister Natalie Orgill

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