This was a very busy and rewarding week! Monday we caught up on our washing and cleaning and last week's Blog. The Oyamas came by wearing a Uof U hat and t-shirt to tell us about their trip to Salt Lake City and Cedar City. Brother Oyama won one gold and three silver medals at the Utah Summer Games in Cedar City. They were all smiles the whole time they talked to us. Thanks again Kit Wareham, they really enjoyed their stay with you and your family.
Christensen and Oyama Shimai, Oyama and Christensen Choro.
They also asked us to teach two sisters in their ward that want to become active again. Kawabe Shimai has been to the Temple in the past and she has a teenage daughter and son. Matsumoto (not sure of the spelling) Shimai is a member and wants to get ready to go to the Temple. We attended Sunday School and Sacrament Meeting in Tsuboi yesterday and met them. We will start teaching them the Temple Preparation classes in English. They want English as they are both from the Philippines and understand English quite well.
Christensen, Matsumoto and Kawabe Shimai and Christensen Choro.
Tuesday we attended District Meeting and learned more from the PMG. That book is amazing!! Tuesday evening we attended the baptism of Matsuoka Machiko of the Kumamoto Ward. This is the first baptism that Barraclough Shimai has actually been able to see through to baptism, usually she is transferred just before her investigators are baptized.
Kinnoshita Yumi, Barraclough, Matsuoka Shimai, Matsuoka's sister, Kinoshita Yuki and Ito Shimai.
Kim Choro and Matsuoka Machiko Shimai.
Fukahara Bishoppu's two youngest children playing "Airplane." Taralee and Rob we know you will appreciate this picture.
This mother has a child on the front and on the back of the bicycle.
When there is construction it is covered almost completely, rare shot of what they are doing.
We got up bright and early Wednesday and traveled to Hiroshima. Our first stop was in Tokuyama up in the Yamaguchi Zone. We inspected Thayne and Mitton Choro's apartment. Forgot to take a picture. They had an old vacuum that didn't work even after we pried the rock solid bag out. They weren't aware that you had to change a bag! Bought them a new vacuum and some bags, a garbage can with a lid, a fan and vent covers for their stove vent. Needless to say they didn't get a Celestial mark. Then on Yanai in the same Zone where we inspected Anstead and Williams Choro's apartment. They needed a new study chair, shopping is limited in Yanai but we were lucky and found a good one for under 6000 yen. They passed with high marks! They got a trip to the konbini (7Eleven) for ice cream of their choice, you would think we had given them a gold medal! Williams Choro traveled over with us in March and it was nice to see him again.
Anstead and Williams Choro.
After traveling 400 km we arrived about 7:30 at the Toyoko Inn in Hiroshima. After we got to the room we knelt and had prayer to be able to find Christensen Shimai some food she could eat. We walked to the train station and found a little cafe with the nicest lady that helped us with this. We had a great meal!
We started Thursday out traveling to Hatsukaichi and inspecting Ekin and Harvard Choro's apartment. They reached Celestial and got ice cream, a new fan and a cover for their stove filter. Forgot to take a picture there also.
Then on to went to Yasufuruichi where we met up with Hoffman and Hirana Choro. Hoffman Choro also flew over with us. They got two fans, vacuum bags, stove vent covers, Celestial and ice cream. Yatta! (they win).
Hirano and Hoffman Choro.
Mirhara apartment was next, Frogley, who goes home this week to New York and then to BYU this fall, and Edwards Choro. We bought them a fan and they passed higher than any Elders have passed with only 2 marks against them for not cleaning the windows and screens. Celestial and ice cream!
Frogley and Edwards Choro. Edwards C is from Australia.
When we inspect the apartments we train the missionaries on housekeeping. Some do better than others. Some are trainable and some less-trainable. We have a score sheet that rates the apartment from Celestial to outer darkness. The biggest problems are getting them to wash their sheets weekly, clean these Japanese drains, shower and toilet rooms and general cleanup around the kitchen. One toaster oven had a half inch layer of black crumbs on the bottom. Not sure why it never caught fire. Anyway we enjoy teaching most of the missionaries.
That night we returned to the same cafe and had another great meal. At the cafe, there was a mother and a 6 year old daughter sitting at the table next to us. We smiled and said hello and enjoyed the meal. When they left, the 6 year old give Christensen Shimai a paper crane she had folded during the meal. The people are very artistic and kind!
A paper crane is for peace. How about that fancy border we found on the camera?
Expressway that "Millie" the navi forgot the way to so we drove on the other road below.
Notice that the big building in background is a CocaCola building.
Friday we had another new adventure. The missionaries at Hikari, Shaner and Haoka Choro wanted to eat right right after we inspected their apartment. (They passed Celestial).
Shaner and Haoka Choro.
We were glad to go with them and the missionaries who had come from Mihara to do splits. Hiroshima is famous for a dish called Okonomiyaki, Japanese savory pancake. The first layer is a crepe, the second layer is soba noodles, which Christensen Shimai could not eat. So Shaner Choro talked the cook into using rice for the first two layers. She agreed, but was afraid it would not taste ok. The next layer was cabbage, then meat, sauce and cheese. Then it was pushed to our side of the grill, we added mayonnaise and ate off the grill. It was delicious!
Okonomiyaki, Shaner Choro and good cooks. Hope we can find that place again!
Christensen Choro and Shimai. Satisfied customers.
We then traveled to Kure taking Shaner (Zone leader) and Frogley Choro with us as they had the keys. The missionaries there were transferred early so we wanted to check and make sure they had left a clean apartment. It was nasty. It took four of us two hours to get it where the new missionaries that came in would not open the door and run the other way. Hope we get another chance to train those two, Campbell (a trainer) and new "Bean" Berg Choro.
We then went to Saijo,to see Lemmon (trainer) and new "Bean" Furusawa Shimai. Their apartment was spotless. They got ice cream! We left some American Clorox with them as they have a less active Shimai who has a mold problem that Japanese bleach won't touch.
Furusawa and Lemmon Shimai
When we got back to the hotel at 7, we were still full from the lunch, so we went to 7Eleven and got a small rice cake and ate
Large model of atomic bomb and our parking place at the Peace Park. Notice the cars on the left of the picture, we are the end one. When we returned to retrieve the car there was another car parked behind us. We, however, were the only ones in the line to have a parking ticket!!
Nishio Choro at Honbu will take care of it and let us know how much we owe.
Yes, those are frogs holding up the barricade poles. You should have seen the pink rabbits!
Saturday we went to the Peace Park in Hiroshima and spend two hours in the museum. It was a sobering experience. War and weapons of war are so terrible. Felt sick when we left. Felt sicker with we saw the parking ticket on our car, but not on any of the other seven cars we parked by.
Atomic bomb model. A small model of the Dome that was left standing. We didn't have time to walk up to the Dome, will go next fall.
Devastation of atomic bomb.
Hiroshima before and after the bomb.
25 Tunnels between Hiroshima and Costco at Fukuoka. Long ones.
We traveled to Costco and met some really nice members there, then home to Kumamoto. Got home at 7pm and were just finishing up emptying the car when we had a phone call. The Kumamoto Choro had a flat tire on their bike and needed to get to an Baptismal interview appointment at the Shimizu/Tsuboi Chapel. Christensen Choro took them while Christensen Shimai put away the groceries.
Stacked highways. Grafitti (sp) in underpasses.
Bridge between Honshu and Kyushu islands.
On Sunday we went to the baptism of Miyazaki Kenshiro, a nine year old boy. He is the son of a Miyazaki Shimai that was baptized two months ago.
De Freitas, Buckingham Choro, Kenshiro and Miyazaki Shimai. Kenshiro and Buckingham Choro.
We then traveled back to the apartment to put in the beef roast. Christensen Shimai had seven people invited for dinner. We arrived just after the sacrament at the Nagamini Ward and learned that the Maui Family had had a bike accident on the way to church. It turn out that Maui Shimai passed out from heat stroke while riding her bike. She was taken to the hospital and given an IV and released. Dinner was great. The roast was cooked to perfection!
Tobias Sofu, Kim Choro, Tsutamori, Harada, Barraclough and Ito Shimai and Oobyashi Choro. Ito, Barraclough and Tsutamori Shimai.
Harada Shimai (the dishwasher) and Oobyashi Choro who kept her entertained while she washed.
Buckingham Choro, Mayumi (an investigator) and De Freitas Choro (the premed student).
Selfless service is what the Savior wants us to do. Kit Wareham and his family are a great example of that kind of service. They took the Oyamas into their home without meeting them before hand. They made sure they got to where they wanted to be and showed them a great time in between events. We can never get ahead of the Lord when we give service, and the feeling we get in our hearts when we help someone is very rewarding.
Elder and Sister Christensen
Grandpa and Grandma
Bess and Tom
Mom and Dad