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Monday, September 2, 2013

Week 30: August 26 - September 1, 2013 Japan Fukuoka Misson

This week has been very busy.  Between transfers (and all the associated driving of missionaries to/from bus stops/train stations) and the last minute requirement to furnish a new apartment for sister missionaries in Shimizu I didn't have time to do last weeks blog.  It is always sad to see missionaries we have come to know and love, leave, but they do such wonderful work wherever they go.

Because of the huge increase in missionaries and especially sister missionaries the mission had located a new apartment in Shimizu.  They are opening 7 new apartments around the mission.  We were given the challenge of completely furnishing it in 6 days.  This is hard job when you know very little language.  But between what Japanese we do know and our electronic translator and a very helpful Japanese missionary, we got it done.

When we first got access to the apartment, we went in to inspect it and measure it for buying appropriate furnishing.  It is actually a home and not an apartment like most missionary housing.  Our inspection revealed an unusual problem with the air conditioner in the upstairs.  They had routed the condensate drainage line and refrigerant tubing through the upstairs patio door, making it impossible to fully close the door or lock it.

There was also one ceiling light socket that was damaged.  Here is the bad one.

Here is a good one with the light plugged in.  It is real simple to plug it in, you just plug it in a about about 10 degree's out of alignment and twist into alignment.  This locks it in place.  It is very convienent and much easier than the ceiling fixtures in the States.

On Sunday after we came back from Nobeoka, with had a dinner appointment with a wonderful Japanese Family.  We had a wonderful meal and nice visit, even though they spoke very little English.  Having the missionaries there as translators helps a great deal.  They asked what hobby I had and I said "hoshi o miru" or watching stars.  They said the wife's father teaches school and gets kits for his students to assemble.  It is a planetarium.  He gave me one.  At first he wondered if should assemble it since the instructions are all in Japanese, but I decided to give it a try.

I put a little time into it on preparation day, but didn't get very far along.  I will be interested how it works.

We have been having a great time, buying all the items needed to completely furnish a new apartment.  It will cost about $4000 US dollars to do it when we are done.  This mission is opening 7 new apartments this transfer, so you multiply it and see a tiny part of the cost of the missionary surge the church is experiencing.  It is all worth it, and it will be seen in the blessing of so many lives as they learn about the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Here is picture of the new house (apartment), it has a lower level with storage shed/garage on the bottom, main floor and upstairs (essentially a third floor) with a balcony in the back.  I'm walking up the stairs to the main floor with a floor length mirror for the sisters.

It is located in a wonderful Japanese residential neighborhood, with many of those we passed being so friendly.  I think this unusual apartment (a house) may be a great blessing to this neighborhood and the missionaries serving there.

One major difference with this apartment is since it is a house it has 14 windows which is much more than a normal apartment.  We were afraid they would be very costly, given what costs are in the States.  However, we were blessed to find a furniture outlet store that also sold curtains / drapes.  Furthermore they were on a great sale.  We were able to cover all the windows for less that $200$ American.

This neighbor hood has a wonderful Japanese style gate into it:

And an interesting Buddhist shine and very old graveyard.

Another very busy week, capped of by 8 hours of church on Sunday with full Japanese immersion, I am beginning to hear more and more of the words they say.  What a blessing.

1 comment:

  1. I remember that month of my mission when I suddenly realized I was understanding some of what people were saying. It just happens without any warning. :) Your language will really take off now!


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I have worked 30 years at Del Monte Foods in Walnut Creek CA, 5 years at Ralston Purina in San Diego CA, 7 years at Carnation in Oconomowoc WI