Monday, March 9, 2009

Our Man in Japan

Yodobashi store

Dear Family and Friends,
Thanks for all your letters and emails. I hope all of you are doing well. I`ll start out as usual by describing this past week. (I always have to reference my journal/planner to remember what happened)

I went to Yodobashi (An electronics store) last Monday and used my gift\points card. It was hard to find something there that I wanted. They had a lot of cool stuff but as a missionary most of it is worthless for me at the moment. I ended up buying a wireless speedometer for my bike and a bike light to replace the one that was stolen my first transfer. I`m crossing my fingers that they don`t get stolen.

Tuesday it rained/snowed which was sort`ve annoying. I wish the weather would make up it`s mind and either become warm and stay warm or stay cold so that I would know whether to dress warm or not.

On Wednesday we stopped inside a grocery store to grab lunch and came across some American lady who`s a member. Apparently her husband works at Mitsubishi and is here for a couple weeks for work. Unfortunately for her she can`t read Japanese and bought something that said grape juice or something in English. She realized after she started feeling weird that it had an Alc. 6% on it and that it was alcohol so she stopped drinking but was already a tiny bit drunk. Anyways be wary of what you drink :P.

In English class I talked a little bit with a couple of the students about how they quit smoking. (Neither of them are members). One of them stopped once but apparently started gaining a little weight and his wife told him to start smoking again :O, he ended up having to quit a second time. The other one quit when he started doing karate and realized he was having trouble breathing. Smoking is very common here unfortunately.

On Saturday we met with a kid going to Provo for school at the end of the month. He`s going to study English. I don`t think he`ll get baptized here but I think he will when he goes to Provo.

Yesterday I gave a talk in Sacrament meeting. Giving talks is getting easier and less stressful but I`m still always a little nervous, which doesn`t help when giving a talk in a foreign language. To prepare for the talk I practice giving it to myself a few times and write down a few key points in English. I shared a scripture which I was able to read fairly fluently when practicing but because I set the scriptures on the podium which was too far from my face it was hard to read the kanji and furigana, I`ll make sure to hold it in my hand next time.

Alright now on to some random stuff I guess.

From what I understand gambling for money is illegal in Japan but you wouldn`t guess it from all the pachinko parlors (They seems almost as common as Starbucks in the U.S.A.). Apparently after winning the little metal balls from the pachinko parlor you have to go right next door and turn them in for money. I don`t really know any of this for sure though.

Megaphones/speakers on trucks and cars aren`t too uncommon. Garbage trucks always have some music playing on them, probably to let people know they`re there. There are also Kerosene trucks, bread trucks, trucks that pick up couches/bikes and stuff for a fee, political trucks, and others that either play music or have someone talking with a megaphone/speaker.

Vending machines here are more advanced than ones I`ve seen in America, at least in Washington. They have cold and hot drinks in them. Sometimes instead of a can/bottle they have a cup that drops down and then is filled up with your selection.

I asked 2 English Class students what a traditional Japanese breakfast was/what they eat and I got these answers. One just drinks milk for breakfast. The other eats toast, salad, egg, ham, and milk. The traditional breakfast is supposedly Rice, Miso Soup, and fish.

What is the Japanese word for Burrito? γƒ–γƒͺγƒΌγƒˆ which is pronounced as Buriito, it sounds pretty similar.

I`ve decided to make more of an effort to send pictures. The picture with this email is from the Dinner Party thing a couple weeks ago. We all made Gyoza from scratch. (Similar to potstickers). It was pretty fun. Tomorrow we`re doing a similar thing but making sushi.

Well that`s all for this week. Thanks. :)


Elder West.

1 comment:

Samurai Mom said...

I think we should all have megaphones on our car so when the baby is screaming people will get out of your way. Or you can apologize when you cut someone off or ask for directions from bystanders