Saturday, February 20, 2016

Dashboard Confessionals

Good morning faithful fans,

Life is rocking and rolling here. We spent around 18 1/2 hours in the
car driving this week and I being the one without a license currently
played co-pilot for my companion Elder Nakamoto. お疲れ様でした。We've been
back and forth across the mission twice this week and have had some
great experiences. So let's get started shall we?

It all begins last Sunday. We had to drive up to the city of 小松
(Komatsu) to go pick up a sister and drive her down to 四日市 (Yokkaichi)
due to an emergency transfer that was going to take place there
shortly. We left after sacrament meeting so we could hit the road as
soon as possible. That was our longest day of driving totaling in at 8
solid hours of the road. At one point on the way up we stopped to use
the bathroom and when we got in the car and passed out for about 15-20
minutes because we were so tired. We had no problems on the way down
and delivered our passenger safely at her destination.

The next day was a fast paced office day where I experienced and
participated in one of he biggest mysteries for missionaries: transfer
calls. We did our normal Monday routine and Nakamoto and I prepared
our transfer suggestions for 石井会長 (President Ishii). So transfers are
decided in around four different meetings that we have with the
president. This was our first one and what we did first was decide the
leadership of the mission and where they would transfer to and then
took down all the people who had been in their area for over four
transfers. We were working on starting to decide new trainers when we
started running out of time due to an FHE that was going to start
afterwards. This first meeting lasted around two hours and it was very
interesting to see for the first time. 石井 is really open to
missionaries' and our suggestions. He is pretty good at allowing
requests that he receives in emails. We'll see how the next couple of
meetings go.

Tuesday we had a zone conference with the 福徳 (Fukutoku) Zone. It
wasn't the smoothest one we had but it still went well. We had to
leave shortly after lunch to head back to 四日市 to go pick up two
missionaries who were leaving the mission early (hence the emergency
transfer on Sunday ). We picked them up and took them to the 本部 during
one of the sketchiest drives we had this week. Nakamoto and I were so
tired it was kind of scary and we felt pretty protected by some higher
power on that drive. After dropping these missionaries off we headed
back to 福徳 to go on exchanges with the ZLs there. I went with Elder
Callahan who reminds me a lot of Tyler. We sped out to an appointment
as soon as we got back to go meet an interesting man named Baker.
Baker is a man who moved here from Uganda to do trade with a business
he owned and due to a series of unfortunate events he is confined to a
wheel chair living at a low end of his life. Baker may not be in the
best of circumstances, but he is incredibly smart and well educated at
some Ivy League school and is a trained orator and man does he love to
listen to himself talk. He is way prideful of his voice and
intelligence and as soon as we entered into his apartment he just went
off on me for a variety of different things with the general theme
that I am/will (apparently) be a terrible lover because I'm a big guy
and because I want to be a pilot. It seems that those two things make
me a cold hearted, mean individual. It was pretty funny to hear all of
his points in his wonderful orator voice and by the end we didn't
quite know if he was criticizing me or auditioning to become my coach
for life skills. It was all pretty funny and there were some good
laughs at his serious comments. In the midst of all his Callahan and I
did teach a really good lesson about the Holy Ghost, but that 15
minutes was short compared to the good hour of listening to Baker
evaluating me.

The next morning Nakamoto and I left early to head out to the good old
DMV to see if I could get all my paperwork done and written test
passed for my Japanese license. We got a good nap in while waiting in
line and then I successfully got the paperwork done and then passed my
written test. Now we have to wait until next month to actually take
the driving test, so I still can't help relieve Nakamoto's burden of
driving. But hey, at least the garbage of waiting in lines is done.

Thursday morning was an early riser. We woke up at 0530 so we could be
hitting the road at 0600 to head up to 金沢 (Kanazawa) for a zone
conference up there. It was a beautiful three hour drive through the
snowy mountains to get there. The 金沢 Zone is absolutely beautiful and
the weather was perfect up there. Their conference went really well.
They are focusing a lot on the "rising generation" of missionaries
because in their zone (and most others) 3/4 of the missionaries have
been in the mission for less than a year. Their training was really
focused on helping them and it was received really well. After this
conference we participated in a DL meeting and then I headed out on a
really short exchange with Elder Day. We did some streeting on the way
to one of the most popular/famous curry places in 石川県(Ishikawa-Ken)
and in the mission: Go Go's Curry. It's way good and is a ton of food
for only 1000円 which is roughly $10. It was super good and worth the
hype and we then went to 英会話 which was super crazy. Literally, some of
the people were crazy. But it was a good time.

Yesterday before we left 金沢 I went on a morning run with the bean-chan
who is serving in 金沢 named Elder Leiendecker. He's a way good kid and
we went and ran up to the 金沢城 (Kanazawa Castle) and a super famous,
beautiful park called 兼六園 (Kenrokuen) which is supposedly the third
most beautiful in all of Japan. It was a gorgeous, and rather warm,
morning in the snow and got to get some great pics and see the city a
little bit more while breathing in the clean mountain air. I love that
area of Japan and if I ever get one more shot to be a field missionary
I want to serve up there. After that we packed up our gear and drove
the 3 1/2 hour ride back and spent the rest of the day finishing a
Book of Mormon reading project for next month.

That's been my week. I hope yours was just as good. I'm thankful that
you even read these long emails and I hope you know that I'm thankful
for all your prayers. I love you all to death! Until next week:



Up by 高山 (Takayama)

Heading to 小松

Go Go's is good



Overlooking 金沢市

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