Saturday, January 23, 2016

Welcome to the Himalayas!

January 18, 2016: Week 64
Area: Aomori

Companion: Payne Choro

Hey guys! It was great to hear from you! Sounds like it was a crazy week! I can't believe Alan Rickman and David Bowie are dead! I really want to watch Harry Potter and listen to "Under Pressure" in honor of those two! Man that's sad! It sounds like you guys are surviving the cold and inversion in Utah! It's currently a blizzard right now as always!

Sorry last week was so short. I didn't have a whole lot of email time. We email at a mall because the church is like an hour away from the apartment, but the bad part is that if it gets crowded, the wi fi gets really weak. 

I'm sitting here, scraping for things to write about because to be honest, there isn't a whole lot right now. A major portion of our time is spent walking in blizzards. It's a great time...... Elder Brodie and I were talking the other day how sometimes when we are walking through a snowstorm, we feel like the fellowship walking to Rivendell on the big snowy mountain from Lord of the Rings. Matthew might know what I'm talking about. But yeah, there's my nerd fanboy moment for the day. Anyway.....

This week we had a way cool opportunity to hear from President Yamashita from the Asia North Area Presidency. It was a really good meeting. It was a combined meeting with the Aomori and Morioka Zones so we went down to Morioka for the conference. It was pretty cool; since Aomori is so far from Morioka, we were able go down south to spend the night. We rode a bus for about three and a half hours to Morioka. Then, since the Morioka apartment was really crowded, we took another hour long train ride and actually stayed in Kitakami for the night! I thought I'd never be able to go back there, but I returned within 2 weeks.We managed to to fit 8 people in that little apartment. We weren't able to sleep much, but oh well. 

The meeting was awesome. President Yamashita and his wife were so nice and funny. It was fun too because he did it all in Japanese with some English mixed in here and there. A lot of the conference was him encouraging us and telling us that we can do it. I feel every time a general authority comes, it has that type of feel to it because I think the Sendai Mission is one of the lowest missions in Asia number wise. It definitely encouraged and uplifted us to keep going and work harder. I felt he touched on a lot of things that I needed to hear, as well as the Aomori district in general. I loved how he and his wife emphasized the importance of working with a smile and a good attitude (not making excuses) while having faith in God and in oneself. Aomori is obviously a very cold and snowy place. There is a snow storm almost constantly. Due to the weather conditions, it can be very easy to make excuses for not working hard or for not having any success: "it's too cold" or "there's no point in trying because it's snowing hard, let's go home early," etc. It was an awesome meeting, partly because Sister Yamashita is a Japanese version of Minnie Mouse. Seriously though, she sounds just like her, but it's in a high pitched Japanese voice. 

I'm sorry, the rest of the week wasn't too interesting,  just walking around in the snow. President Yamashita challenged each companionship to have a baptism date by next month so we are kind of starting from the bottom and trying to work towards that goal. In the meantime, since we have no investigators to teach, we meet with members a lot and teach them lessons. It looks like this transfer will be full of trying to find people in the blizzards.

Today, we went to an Ekaiwa student's house to help shovel snow. For some reason, he has a flat roof house in a way snowy city so there was a ton of snow packed on the roof. So us four elders went there and shoveled snow off the roof for like 4 hours. My back is killing me! But, they fed us a way good lunch so it was worth it! Im way tired though. It was a great opportunity to serve and a solid exercise opportunity as well!

Well that's about it from me. Sorry it's such a boring email. Aomori really needs to be built up because it's super dead right now, so we are trying our best. Elder Payne and I are also going to Sendai by Shinkansen tomorrow because there is another trainer and new missionary meeting that we have to attend. Man, so many meetings! We also have a sports activity this Saturday so I'm looking forward to playing some basketball again! Hopefully we can get some people to come! Well I hope y'all have a great week! Love you guys!

Elder Nathan Didericksen 

p.s. I haven't done a word of the day since forever ago, so since I use the word blizzard all the time right now, I'll teach you that one. Blizzard=fubuki. Welp, there you go!

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