Happy Birthday, Kyle and Kimball!

こんにちわ、みんな さん!How is everybody doing in their various locations? I am doing quite well here in Miyakonojo, Japan!

This week has been superb! On Wednesday we taught Kawauchi san, an elderly lady who has been coming to Eikaiwa (English class) with her friend. She fed us sushi, sashimi, and other Japanese foods (like rice). I cannot say that I am really a fan of sushi or sashimi (especially when the sushi has wasabi on it), although I will still eat it. I suppose it probably depends on the sushi. She also has two cats that she introduced to us. The first was not that excited to meet us, apparently, and flew from her arms as soon as it saw us. This was our first lesson with her, so we learned a bit of her religious background (Buddhist and Shinto, which is quite common in Japan, especially amongst the elderly); taught that God is our loving Heavenly Father; and spoke a bit about families. It was very good, and she definitely enjoyed our visit with her. She lives alone (with her cats); her husband passed away a couple years ago, so I imagine we will place a lot of focus on the Sukui no Keikaku (Plan of Salvation). We have another appointment with her next Wednesday (for which she plans on feeding us again).

We totsu zen ("impromptu") visited another of our investigators, Alex (his name is actually Araki kun, but said that his friends at college call him "Alex" now). We set up an appointment with him and also talked a little bit about My Little Pony, because we discovered that Alex is a Brony (for anybody who does not know, a Brony is a teenage/adult male that likes to watch the children’s cartoon My Little Pony), for which revelation Elder Jensen was quite excited as he was also somewhat of a Brony prior to his mission.

We also had another revelation while we were tracting in that same area. The other week my companion introduced me to a wonderful bag of cookies called "Country Ma’am". They are quite good. Anyway, as we were tracting we discovered that Country Ma’am cookies also come in buckets! We saw a stack of those buckets outside somebody’s back door. Now we just need to find out where those buckets came from. 🙂

Yesterday we had a very long day at church. We had our missionary correlation meeting at 9:00 am, then church from 10:00 – 1:00, then a missionary fireside with Brother Shane Petersen (I don’t know what his actual calling is, but he seems to do something mission-related over our zone; he is also fairly young). It was very good (I presume; I didn’t understand most of it, but it seemed to be good). Then we had another meeting to further plan for an open-house that our branch wants to do this summer. Needless to say, there was a lot of Nihongo that I did not understand, but it was a good experience.

Last night we also visited two less-active members with Shinko shimai (one of the members with whom we do a lot of missionary-related activities; she is awesome). We are going to return to one of the less-active members later this week to provide a priesthood blessing.

Well, I don’t have much time left. Here are a few more pictures:

A great example of Japanese English:

Miyakonojo at night:

Elder Jensen’s steak cake (there is a story behind this that I have not the time to tell):

Squid mouth that I ate (it was very chewy):

Stamina Taro Restaurant (an all-you-can-eat restaurant where throw slabs of raw meat on a plate and cook it, as seen below):

Well, my time is almost gone. I love you all! Have a wonderful day, a happy week, and a supercalifragilisticexpialadocious year!

Love,

Elder Madsen

p.s. I forgot to add a subject to my last email. It was supposed to be Happy Birthday, Kyle! so I added that this week instead. I did not forget your birthday, Kyle!

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