And why am I so glad to be on this mountain bike, you ask? Well several reasons, but the biggest is the HILLS. My oh my the HILLS. I think I've sweat more in the last week than I have on my entire mission combined. Okay. Too much info. You're welcome. But Steve shimai and I are doing some beastly cardio and I'm loving it! Speaking of Steve shimai, I'll give you a little background on her...
Ste Shimai is on her 11th transfer. Her trainer was also Yo shimai, in Akita! She is half Japanese, and is such a good time! She understands English pretty well, but she doesn't speak it. Her dad is crazy fluent in Japanese, and works as a translator. She is the 3rd oldest of 7 kids! Her two younger just left on their missions to Fukuoka and Kobe. She's a lot of fun and we're working hard!
Word of the week! Ganko- stubborn. I think it just SOUNDS like stubborn. "Nande sonna ni ganko na no??" "Yo, why are you being so stubborn?" No, I have never used it in this context...but just in case YOU ever wanted to say it!
The dramatic moment of this week- not funny. Not even a little bit. So it's 4:15 am, and for some reason Ste shimai and Su shimai wake up all of the sudden. And then the ground starts shaking- big time. Earthquakes are pretty normal here, so we all thought nothing of it. Until the alarm sounded. We hear a distant but VERY loud alarm saying "emergency....emergency. please flee away from the ocean to higher ground." And it gets louder and louder. Then the siren for tsunami warnings that haunts me from videos I've seen of the tsunami destroying this very area sounds. We put on our tags and bike to higher ground to an emergency evacuation center- and we were the only ones. The tsunami was apparently just a couple of feet high, nothing to worry about. But that was a LONG long day.
I enjoyed my last area so much that I was truly concerned that I would be able to truly love the members of Tagajo. It was weighing on my heart before I had even met more than 4 of them, so I began praying to feel Christ's love for them and be able to love them in turn. The Lord answered my prayers. Yesterday as we entered the church building, I felt a profound sense of love for these wonderful saints in Tagajo. I am so excited to work with them to lift and encourage them as they endure to the end and share the precious gem of the gospel with those around them!
|Saying goodbye to Mi san and Ko shimai|
This week we had three lessons with May chan, the cute 16-year-old that got baptized last month. In our lesson yesterday, we were talking about the principle of teaching an learning in the church, and I was about to start in on just explaining everything, but then I stopped. "What did you learn in Young Women's today?" I asked instead. She elaborated with enthusiasm on what she had learned about the Gift of the Holy Ghost, what she thought about it, and how it applied to her. After she had finished teaching US, we sat in silence for a moment, overwhelmed by how well she had just taught us. She understands teaching and learning in the church better than I do, I think:) We plan to move forward with her recent convert lessons by having HER teach US what she will be learning in seminary, etc. She's such a great young woman! We're going to try to meet her mother more; the ward has asked us to focus on her family and we are trying to get into contact! Her family likes the missionaries; we hope it will help us to share with May about our beliefs!
We also had a mogi member comes with the missionaries lesson with one of our 83 year old members! Ko shimai had told me there was a member whose house they had always called, "Costco". And I found out why, ans we left the mogi laden with about 20 pounds of fruit jelly, drinks, ice cream, and snacks. I will not get fat here. I WILL NOT get fat here.
There's this fun thing called "Open Space" here on Thursday and Friday nights, where the church is open for ping-pong and Uno and games! It's a way for people to come hang out at the church in a non-threatening environment where they can just come and have fun! The dendo here is through a lot of activities; it's a super fun way to work!
We've got Zone Meeting this week, so back to Kamisugi! I look forward to hearing about all of your weeks!
My favorite car in Odate;) Couldn't have said it better myself.
The car says "Love and Hustle for all"