Monday, June 29, 2015

Kodomo (children's) Eikaiwa, Serving Ito-San, and Transfer Calls.


This week has brought a lot of change into my mission. Just as a heads
up to everyone my Preparation Day will be switching starting this next
week from Monday's to Saturday's while serving in the Honbu.

Elder Coggins and I woke up and went for a run. We went on our normal
5k track, except this time we felt a little adventurous, so we took a
turn we hadn't taken before. About an hour later we made it back to
the apartment. It was so far! We probably doubled our run! We then
went to the church to work on my companions BYU application. After
that we went to Bit Camera so my companion could buy a voice recorder.
Bit Camera is like Best Buy with 8 floors and cells everything from
cosmetic products to cell phone plans, and everything in between. It
was a fun trip inside. We then went to go eat sushi with the other
elders that was a lot of fun! Then off to buy the groceries for the
week. I was nominated head grocery shopper, (let me translate this, I
am now cooking for the apartment). So we bought all kinds of fun
things to eat (which won't destroy our stomach lining). We then came
home, then ran to the church to do emailing. After that we went to
kichijoji for the Wada FHE! It was so good! We had 4 people from our
ward there! Elder Hansen and Elder Hadlock played hymns on the piano
and guitar and related it to how we can feel the spirit differently.
It was really good, they are the two most musically gifted people I
know. They played a duet of "come ye children of the lord"on the piano
and didn't even look at the piano, no script or anything both playing
from ear! It was amazing. After we had refreshments and I met the
office couple, the Adamsons, they are really nice, but don't speak any
Japanese. So I helped him translate. That was fun to do. Yamauchi
Shimai (who was baptized about two weeks ago) talked to Brother
Adamson so a while. She is really really funny. She said, "I am 82
years old, but I like to dress and act like I am 18." It is so true,
she is so funny. I call her grandma. On the way home we got smashed in
a train again and got home at 10. It was a long night, but really

We woke up and worked out. After studies we went for an adventure! We
had a pretty open schedule. We planned to go and fix my companions
bike since the quick release pin was bent. So we went to the church
thinking we could just smash the pin straight. Well we are probably as
smart as the hammer we used because we bent it in the opposite way.
With that we found Misu kyoudai who told us where a bike shop was. It
was really far so he offered a ride, and dropped us off at the shop.
They were able to find the right pin, which was a big miracle! Then we
started our journey back to the church. We ran into a two young men on
a bridge, they were speaking weird Japanese so we asked them where
they were from! They were from China! We talked to them and invited
them to our music night! After that we ran into another man who we
walked to the eki with. Then we ran into Nori and followed up with our
appointment for tomorrow. After that met a huge man! His name was
machida and he is a taxi driver. He was so happy, we were able to set
up a lesson with him for Thursday! Then we went to the church. When we
tried pumping the tire up we realized that there was a hole, so we
went to another local shop and asked. As you can probably guess we got
to walk all the way back to the bike shop to get a new inter-tube. On
the way we talked to a few kids coming home from school, as well as
other people along the way. Then we rushed back and my companion
grabbed one of the missionaries old bikes and we went to Kitano to
meet Tomo for sushi and a short lesson. We talked about family
history, it was fun talking about my aunt who is a genealogist, and
how he can trace his line back too! After that good lesson and a lot
of sushi we got on the bikes to come home. Well my bike is a little
faster than old blue so my companion had to crank a little harder to
keep up. Then from behind I hear an awful grinding noise. As you can
imagine, the chain and the transmission had broken off the bike and he
was dragging it behind him. It was hilarious! That old bike met its
death, 5 years after being used my missionaries. We then went to the
church to teach our recent convert Ishikawa kyoudai, we taught about
Jesus The Christ. It was an enjoyable lesson. We then ran home to make

After studies we went to the church to fix my companions tire and fill
it up. After we went back to church to teach Nori San. It was a very
interesting lesson. We used the spirit to ask a lot of inspired
questions to get her thinking. It was a really good, we set good
expectations which was the end goal of the lesson. After the lesson we
ran into the sisters who informed us that that we were going to have
to run the kids English class for about half of it. That frightened us
a lot. But we decided to ganbaru through it! So we came back to the
apartment and grabbed all the extra American change I have. Then we
went back and began preparing. The first half hour was one of the
longest half hours of my life! The kids were so intense, and our CD
player broke when we were singing the wheels on the bus. We were both
sweating like pigs and probably as lost as well! thankfully the
sisters came! It went a lot better! It was night and day! I have
gained a greater respect for women and working with children. Men just
aren't very talented in that least my companion and I
aren't. We then came home and recovered and ate dinner, then back to
the church for normal Ekaiwa! It was a great class we talked about our
world around us. We teach with the sisters intermediate class, it is a
lot of fun. We have a discussion topic during each class. Today's was
"Why do you think we notice the differences in societies first?" It
was a pretty deep question for newer English speakers. It was neat to
hear the results and things. After the class we usually hold a
discussion with all the students, however had no topic and we were
running low on time so I jumped in decided to do a big introduction
about Ohio! We covered everything from the airplane to amusement parks
to crop rotation. It was a pretty wide spread topic. I am sure they
all want to go see all the corn in Ohio. They all loved seeing the
pictures of the farm back at home. After class we stayed and talked
with a less active sister for a little while then came home!

After getting ready for the day we went straight to the church for
zone meeting! It was really good, I liked the training on Christ-like
attributes a lot. It gave me something more specific I can work on.
During the meeting Takeyama called us and said that he couldn't come
to our lesson that night but could come to church on Sunday! Perfect
there is a YSA activity! After the meeting we went to stamina as a big
group and ate a ton of food. After that we got on our bikes and went
to Ito-sans house to help him clean. It was a mess as usual, and we
were trying to get something specific we could do. Well my companion
and I couldn't, and we had a lesson to go to so we left for the lesson
and the other elders stayed behind still working. When we got to the
church we realized neither of us had keys, and even worse, our two
lessons scheduled fell through that day! What a bummer! Machida-San
had work so we couldn't meet with him. After that we called the other
elders to see how they were doing. They were in it retry deep with
Ito-san, they began cleaning and started a big project that needed us
there, I guess the Lord really does work in mysterious ways. So we
hopped on the bikes and peddled over. Upon arrival we saw trash bags
everywhere mostly filled. After inquiring as to what had happened we
began helping. There were so many Mosquitos, we were all covered in
bites. However we were able to clean a lot of it, and wave to
neighbors too! After we finished for the day we thanked him and went
to have dinner. After we went to ping pong night and an Ekaiwa student
and I talked about planes, I found a way to look at the planes at the
Air Force museum on google maps! It was fun to see all the old planes
I grew up seeing!

After studies, Elder Eaton and I began cleaning the back porch. It has
a lot of trash out on it we realized. Mostly because we never use it.
We bagged up a few bike tires, blankets and all kinds of other things.
Then put it out for the trash. Well the cleaning spirit then got into
everyone and we began our deep clean of the apartment, since it was
raining, it was the perfect time to! We cleaned out our tatami room
really well. We then had our weekly planning, however we wear t able
to finish because we had a lesson so we ran to that, however he didn't
show up, so we came back home, changed into normal clothes, and went
to daiso to print out a picture for Ito-San. We began cleaning again,
which turned into taking old boxes, literal wooden boxes, down stairs.
We found all kinds of cool things, like a really old Canon camera,
newspaper articles from right after WWII, and money dating back to the
year 400! Talk about some neat stuff. We helped him bag more of it, as
well as clean up. There is so much dust in that house, that Elder
Gaily asked 12 times if he had a vacuum. Then when Ito said no, he
went looking for one. We found two. Sadly neither of them worked
though. It was an enjoyable time serving others.

We woke up did our normal work outs then studies. Elder Mak, Elder
Hansen, and Elder Gailey came back to the apartment for lunch! I made
pancakes, eggs, and bacon! It was fun cooking for one more person.
After that we went to the church to get our transfer calls (or emails
rather). Well Hachioji, I've enjoyed your beautiful mountains, and
wonderful people. However I must leave. I have been called to the
Honbu (Mission Office) to be the Tech Staff Elder of the mission.
Elder Moua whose first language is Hmong, but speaks fluent English
will be my companion. Is is the current Tech Staff Elder, and will
train me for a transfer before handing everything over to me. I am
going to vent a little more than I usually do in these journals now.
To be completely honest, at the beginning of my mission I really
wanted to be a Tech Staff Missionary, it seemed like an easy life, and
I felt like I could help out a lot. Well 9 months into my mission now
I feel the opposite is true. I really really really (yes, that much)
love dendo. Watching people feel and see the light of Christ is
amazing. I love going out and serving others. I still will however I
only have 3 hours to help bring my brothers and sisters into Christ a
day instead of the normal 8 it is cut pretty significantly. However
like the famous song says, I will go where you want me to go dear
Lord, over mountain or plain or sea. Well if the Honbu is where I am
needed than that is where I will serve with all my heart, might, mind,
and strength (and trust me it will use it all too). I am not sure how
my journals are going to be in the Honbu at all, they will probably be
shorter. So in advance I am sorry. Okay vent over. After I got my call
I looked to see what was happening to my companion, he is training a
new missionary! So cool! President Wada was at the church for a stake
meeting so he called in all the missionaries to talk to them about
their calls. He talked to me about some things to keep in mind at the
Honbu. It was a comforting talk. To be honest, I am more scared of
going to the Honbu than literally anywhere else. On the bright side of
things, Soster Wada is excited for me to bake! After talking with
president we went to go try and teach a lesson, however the girl
wasn't home so we bikes back. Then went out to Ramen before the
Hachioji music night! It was so good, and very well attended. I
helped, well shadowed really, Elder Burube who was tech staff before
on how he worked with the lighting and sound. It was a good learning
experience. However, I loved the music. I love how easily it is for us
to bear testimony through music and song. It really does give a
different meaning to the words when they are sung from the heart. It
was wonderful. After that we helped clean up and then ran home to make
curfew. Sorry today's is so long, I had a lot on my mind.

We awoke and I fixed another pair of pants to fit, then went to church
for DCS. It was great, no one believed me when they heard I was
leaving so soon! I have only been here for 6 weeks! Our friend
Takeyama came to church! In Priesthood we started talking about
marriage, then it evolved into what our favorite part of the gospel
is. I guess we know what his was. Then we had gospel principals where
we talked about parables of farms. Well the good ol'raspberry farm was
brought up and I was able to share some neat experiences from it.
Sacrament meeting was good. I found an interesting observation. In
America we typically reference the Hebrew translation of words, or the
Greek or Latin roots. However in Japan they often reference the
English word. One of the speakers talked about Moroni 10:3, talking
about exhort, and how the translation was unable to completely convey
the feeling of the word. It was really interesting. Afterwards. I said
goodbye to my buddy, Sister Yamauchi. She was so sad to hear I am
leaving! We talked for an hour, she said we can be best friends
forever. I love that woman, she is my favorite 82 year Japanese woman.
She said that she expects to sit next to me at the Wada FHE! After
that we talked with more members then went to the YSA activity. It was
the most awkward time I have had on my mission. Everyone was so
awkward around each other, so naturally as missionaries we couldn't
really talk a whole lot. Let's just say we were happy when it was
over. We then came home and finished weekly planning. We had a long
and through weekly planning session for my companions new missionary
that he will be receiving. We had a really long companionship
inventory. But it went really really well. I am glad we had it. It
fixed a lot of things.

I love you all!

Elder Dunn

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