Mission Address

Japan Nagoya Mission
1-304 Itakadai, Meito-ku
Nagoya, Japan T465-0028

Monday, November 7, 2016

weekly email

It's been a slow week. Literally every person who had an appointment with us this week had to cancel or didn't respond; there's a cold going around rampage and it's made our work really shift gears.   

I finally had my first exchange on Tuesday. It was with with Elder Jones, we stayed in Ueda, and it was decently productive. Elder Jones is from Nagano (companion = Elder Abe); our district is made up of us four elders. Makes things easy. There's a senior missionary couple in Nagano that drops by for the meetings we have every week as a district. They're nice and give us snacks, usually. 
Basically,'with Elder Jones we spent the morning on a bike ride out to a distant less active member's apartment who wasn't there, the afternoon with an investigator whom Elder Jones knows and loves (he had referred us to her in the first place), and the rest of the evening doing mostly service for that same investigator. We spent a lot of time there. We ate lunch at a unknown treasure of a Chinese restaurant (super cheap + huge portions) and the service we provided was picking seeds off a dead bush in prep for a big Earth Day project. Elder Jones broke his messenger bag trying to get on and off Elder Smith's tall bike seat and I supplied him with an extra from our apartment. In return, he gave me a bunch of nice PDFs, notes, and pictures for missionary work--even a recipe for Taco Soup,'although where I'm supposed to get beans, taco mix, sour cream and salsa in Japan IdK. 

Since we'd lost most of our active lesson-teaching time, Elder Smith and I decided to use that time for Updating Maps.me and making a member record, instead. When we got to Ueda there was practically no information for us to go off of--who the members are, what they're like, what they do; who the investigators are, why they're interested, what they've been taught; former investigators and less actives, where they live, what their name is even--all missing, or at least very scattered from records made 10 years ago. So, there's a lot of record work that needs finishing for the future missionaries that use this area before we can really start hammering down on increasing things like church attendance. 

This week we made delicious Katsu (fried pork bites), but I also got sick from it because the bigger pieces weren't cooked thoroughly. Learn from me--always let your companion eat the bigger pieces of chicken. 

This week (as with every week) we taught English as a service to the community and our students now want to give me Natto for my birthday. We talked about Korean BBQ, riding elephants, Canada, and Antarctica. Antarctica is hard to say in regular English but even harder when you try to slow it down and pronounce it correctly for others to learn from. 

One of the highlight adventures of this week was our trip to the Onsen (hot springs). We only wanted to briefly visit a former investigator to works out there (it's a three hour bike ride; 30 min by train), but got a whole lot more instead. So we couldn't actually find her store, and spend a good chunk of time wandering around. While so doing, we ran into an American who's actually been living in Japan for 22 years teaching English. He got a rig for free boarding, food, and travel for 6 months as he teaches in Saku; he visits his family in Yokohama on the weekends. Not bad at all, but I'd miss the family time. It was good to talk for a bit about in English about various things going on and what we do. He's a good guy. 
Well, we found and taught the lady finally but it was getting late. Then, Elder Smith punctured his tire. 3 hours away and we can't get back. We had to abandon our bikes,'ride the expensive tour train back to Ueda, grab bike bags, go back and put bikes into said bags, then return. It was super costly both time and money wise. However, one good thing did come out of it: while waiting for the next train before finally heading home, we used the down time to try out a foot onsen (that's as much as the mission will allow). It was so refreshing! Even if only for ten minutes, it was worth it. 

Cool fact: Ueda is the basis for the anime movie Summer Wars . Love that movie. 



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