There are a lot of things that have gone on here that I want to write about, but probably don't have to time to. I only get 60 minutes, and I'm doing my laundry and other emails simultaneously. MTC is really strict about exact obedience and following every time allocation. I haven't really had a moment of downtown, actually.
Dear Mom and Dad,
I was called a tool today.
Your Elder, Elder Cardon
(8/4/16 second day of the MTC)
Well here at the MTC I've been put into a district that is made up entirely of people who also know Japanese very well, even better than I; the rest of the Elders are Halfs, who grew up with Japanese mothers. Literally. Every single other Elder in the District is a half. It's almost an honor to be recognized as on the same level of speaking as them, even though I am not really. Honestly, though, my Japanese had soared speaking-wise since we are encouraged to only speak in Japanese 24/7.
Some interesting things about my district and stay here thus far:
Everyone in the district played PoGo before coming out. The average level we reached was 21.
I'm known here as the "Honorary Gaijin" (lit. honorary foreigner). I'm also called Cordon Bleu, like the food. Funny enough, we actually had cordon bleu on sunday for dinner, and some stranger shouted "Yes! Cordon Bleu!" (because they were excited to eat cordon bleu). I promptly swiveled my head and asked, "Yes? Who called my name?"
Here at the MTC, everyone looks good all the time because we're all wearing our best dress all the time. So as me and my boyz are walkign down the street with our suits I can't help but thinking, "AAAAAAHH YEAH!!"
The other Elders' names in my district are as follows: Elder Wheeeeeeeeezemann (my companion), Elder Barbie, Elder Handlebar, Elder Doreo, Elder Diglett, and myself, Elder Cordon Bleu.
We have excessive amount of study time. Like, 12 hours, I swear. We wake up, study, eat, study, eat again, study again, eat again, study again, and then prep for bed. We have chunks of three hours regularly specifically set aside to study. Don't worry, we use this time extremely productively. We talk of Japanese, think of Japanese, sing of Japanese, read of Japanese, everything Japanese. My favorite things we've said include, "Don't touch my moustache" (as in douitashimashite) and "I got toes" (as in arigatou). I'd type in hiragana but this computer seems to lack that capability.
Hey, shout-out to my uncle Jeff Cardon. You know that Elder you told me to find here, Elder Wall? Well, I actually found him. (well, more like he found me..) He didn't really match your description, but it's all good. He came up to me and immediately asked if I knew Jeff Cardon, and I was like, "yeah!" He said that I looked like you, else he wouldn't have asked. Go figure.
Our group (erm.. district) is a bit infamous here. Since we all know Japanese pretty well, people are jealous and keep their distance. I mean, they're missing out on a great opportunity but whatever. We just head on over to the Japanese district made up of actually fluent Elder and Sisters (well of course; they're mostly actually from Japan). You can learn a lot when you don't have a clue what is going on.
In our classroom setting, we've had to do self-introduction everyday since we arrived here. The reason being that every single day since we've arrived, we've had a different sensei teaching us. It's kinda annoying, but on the other hand I'm getting really good at the thing. We have an actual sensei, but he keeps dipping out to go on vacation. And so come in the subs. But it's cool. I learned an onomonopia; byunbyun. Look it up.
The Japanese section of the MTC has an overarching motto: Ai shiteimasu! and shinpai shi naide.
I just have to talk about my morning because they are just so interesting. We wake up at 6:30, right? Well, the manner of our waking up is pretty funny. The sisters' in our district decided to be smart and set their alarms in increments, starting at 6:00 and gradually rising to 6:30. Well, as Elders of course we all set alarms in the most profound way we can. Basically what we decided to do was set all of our alarms, about six of them, at 6:29; exactly one minute before we're supposed to be up and out of bed and hitting the showers. If we're not actually out of bed at 6:30, we're technically breaking rules. Waking up to six alarms in such a manner is pretty brutal; it's like a sucker punch to the belly every day. Also, the lights we have don't have any settings. What I mean by that is that when they turn on, they are at the full brightness and glory of the sun setting. I'm on the top bunk, so there is no avoiding the pain of the searing rays burning into my retinas each morning. No lie, it takes a full two minutes for my poor eyes to adjust. But... it definitely does its job. (BTW mom, my towel is rubbing off on me. Literally. By the time I take a shower in the evenings, I have just a little bit of scruff coming in. When I dry off, I'm left with the fluffy remains of towel posted all over my face. Nice, eh?)
There are too many stories to share; I can't possibly laugh about them all with you. But tune in next time to hear about volleyball adventures!
Japan Nagoya Mission