Monday, December 16, 2013

December 16, 2013

Hey everybody! Things are going great here! Here's the week's rundown for you!

Monday: Well today was a relaxing P-day. We did the usual stuff except we got Beef Curry at email which was pretty good! then we actually got to take naps today! I loved it! We also all got haircuts today cause Transfers are this week so we'll be busy and we all wanted our hair a little shorter.

Tuesday: Today we got Transfer calls! K and B are staying.  All of the Sisters are transferring except for M Shimai. D is going to Odori with my Mtc companion D Choro, and I got a Nihonjin Comp here in Ebetsu. His name is S Choro and I've heard great things about him so I'm excited! I hear he doesn't know much english though so I'm a little nervous about that. But I'll survive!

Wednesday: Today was D Choro's birthday so we decided to celebrate a bit. We got pizza for lunch cause it was half off which was nice but still expensive. We also had our gyosa party tonight! I had 60 gyosa, about a liter of water, and 2 pieces of toast and still had room, but I decided not to push it. So dad, I've beaten your record! ;) I did decide afterwards though that it wasn't my best idea by far... ;) haha but I'm doing ok, don't worry!

Thursday: Today was Transfer day! We started off with Personal study, and then quickly prepped and headed to the train station to try to get to the music practice that Sister Evans set up for preparation for the music night. I got to talk to a bunch of my friends from the MTC as well as friends I've made while here so that was pretty fun! I met S Choro and he's super awesome, and I love him already!  He got a package from his parents though at the transfer spot, and it was filled to the top with like 45 clementines! It was kinda crazy, but because of that I've found one of my favorite foods. You get clementines and either peel them or don't and freeze them. It's delicious!

Friday: So S choro is absolutely hilarious. He doesn't know a ton of English, but he knows some, and I found that I know more Japanese than I thought! It was also a blizzard today, but we walked through it anyway and actually had a lot of fun with it!

Saturday; Today we had the ward Christmas Party! It was really fun and I sang with the ward choir which went better than I thought! We decorated cakes, ate some good food and talked with a bunch of people so it was fun! Oh so Christmas here in Japan is a little different. They usually go to KFC(yes, Kentucky Fried Chicken, I don't know why either), and then make Christmas Cakes and give presents. Kinda cool...

Sunday: Today was also good. Church went well, I felt like I could talk to the members more because I feel like my Japanese is alright. Messiah practice went well, but it's super high music so I hope I don't lose my voice before the concert cause it doesn't do much for my voice... We'll see! Also the conductor thinks I'm absolutely awesome, and can do no wrong so I feel like I'm back in High School with my teachers loving me, also thinking I can do no wrong... Kinda funny, like a blast from the past... ;)

Well that was my week! Have a great one!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

December 9, 2013

Hey everybody, my week was good this week! I hope yours was too! Here's how it went:

Monday: Well today started off like the normal P-day (cleaning, study, shopping) but then we went to email at the Atsubetsu ward cause D Choro needed to practice the piano for the music night. After emailing we ran back home so we could meet up with this lady we know to help her find an English textbook cause she wants to learn how to speak English pretty fluently. Then we relaxed for a bit, and then took a train to a station near the Stake President's house cause they invited us over for dinner again and it was amazing again!

Tuesday: Today we had a really really good DTM, and had soup curry for lunch which is way good. Then we did dendo, then for Eikaiwa, one of the students brought their little son who enjoys being lifted up high, and fake fighting so I ended up doing that a lot. It was pretty fun to fake die though... ;) I also found that I had two packages at the post office!

Wednesday: Today was really fun. I went on splits with B Choro again, and we had a blast. I also got both of my packages today! One was from Mom and the family and the other was from the ward! It turns out that both were Christmas packages, but since there's the customs declarations I basically knew what I was getting anyway, plus we've got transfers this week and I want to know how I'm going to pack it all, so I opened them. For all of you who sent something in the ward package, thank you so so much! It really was so cool to see how many ward friends I've got supporting me back home! Family, thank you so much or all of the thoughtful great gifts! Grandma, especially thank you for the socks! I was wishing I had some wool socks and almost went to buy some, so I'm glad I opened them, and that you were so thoughtful of how cold it is! Mom the CD is awesome, and the peanut brittle was heavenly! Everyone enjoyed both a lot! :) I haven't opened my stocking yet, but all of the stuff that I did open I am super grateful for, so thank you all so much!

Thursday: Today was kinda a crazy day, but we were very blessed! This morning we saw a house get torn down across the street from us. Then we had an appointment and on the way a car almost hit us when we were just walking on the sidewalk, and it stopped like a foot away from us so that was a miracle! Also on the way back from the appointment we almost got hit again, so we were very blessed to make it back to the apartment without any injuries! Thanks for your prayers!

Friday: Today was pretty average, but while finding today, we played a game where you say a Japanese word, and the last character of the word has to be the first of the next one. Also no repeating words, and no ending in an "n" cause no words start with just an N. So I got a bunch of vocab to learn from it.

Saturday: Today we tried some new ways to dendo. One was survey dendo. We basically made a survey to hand out that would gage people's interest in religion. So we went to the Eki next to our apartment and after handing out about 10 a guy told us that we couldn't do it there. So one of the managers came and explained that it was against the law to hand out religious surveys in an eki, and in order to do it anywhere else, you had to get permission from the city hall. So we accidentally broke a law while dendoing today... Whoops! We also tried giving tours of the church but it wasn't very effective either. But we had dinner with this family in the ward which was really fun.

Sunday: So the member we had dinner with last night tries to write letters to the missionaries' parents when she gets to know them, so she asked for Mom and Dad's information. Usually she tries to translate it into English but it's really hard for her. So to try to make it easier on her I told her that Mom and Dad went to Japan on their missions so they might understand a LITTLE bit. But she took that as only write in Hiragana and Katakana. I then tried to explain that they had forgotten most of it, but she didn't quite seem to understand... So sorry mom and dad, but you may have some homework to do soon! ;) Then we had Ward Choir, which went well, and then lunch and getting ready to walk to Atsubetsu for the Messiah Rehearsal. I have the address by the way for the videos. It is on Also there is a facebook page Sapporo Messiah but ya, fun week!

I hope everyone's doing well, and I love you all! Have a great week!

Elder Bickel

Monday, December 2, 2013

December 2, 2013

Hey everybody!

Sorry my email will be a little shorter today cause I don't have a ton of time! So here's how the week went!

Monday: Today we had a fun P-day, and there was another earthquake! Small again though so I barely even felt it... Anyway, we did our regular P-day stuff and then took a subway to Sapporo and took a bus from there to Asahikawa for our Zone Training Meeting! We were in an apartment with 14 total Elders so we definitely had a good time! We were travelling today for about 3 hours though so it was kinda long, but it was still pretty fun!

Tuesday: Well today we had Zone Training Meeting and it was super good! At the end of the meetings people usually go somewhere to eat together, but we had Eikaiwa that night so we weren't able to go with everyone. So we stopped by McDonalds and then took the train back to Ebetsu so another 3 hours. We made it just in time to prep and teach, and it went pretty well! Fun day though, I enjoyed it a lot!

Wednesday: Well today was pretty normal up until Dinner. I remembered how Dad had 60 something gyosa one night so we got these 2 dollar trays of 30 gyosa each and I ended up having 36 gyosa and still having room for 3 melon cream soda floats, 3/4 of a cup of rice, and a big glass of water! It was kinda a party! I also decided that I want to break Dad's record without throwing up so just wait to hear news on that one! ;)

Thursday: So B Choro got an airsoft gun from his Bean Shower, and Japanese airsoft guns look pretty real. So naturally, we made some first person shooter movies with our cameras and the gun and it turned out super funny! Sadly the guns are illegal in America cause they don't have the orange tips. In Japan guns are illegal no matter who you are so they don't have to worry about that stuff too often. The rest of the day was pretty normal but it was super good for sure!

Friday: Today was one of those long boring days where we just house and there isn't much that goes on... But those days come, and we just go through it. Cause when it comes to long days and trials, "All things will end". So it's not too bad.

Saturday: Well today started out a little sad. We were both feeling kinda down about how there weren't a whole lot of visible signs of our work or progress, but during comp study, we both just started reading different scriptures, patriarchal blessings, and stuff like that and we almost immediately felt a ton better! The rest of the day was walking to appointments and places to go dendo, and it was a little crazy because of the ice, but I got some Ice Spikes for my shoes that I can put on pretty easily, so it wasn't too bad! But despite the cold, the sad start, and everything else, it turned out to be a really good day! :)

Sunday: Well today was a good Fast Sunday! We had some good housing and found some really cool people. We had a really good, warm dinner, and it made me very happy cause we have rice! We were low on rice for a while, but the ward is awesome and they gave us a bunch! Oh I also was made a part of the Ward Choir today so we'll see how the performance goes... Oh and we didn't have Messiah rehearsal today cause of Fast Sunday. I did get some information on that though so you may be able to watch the video of the performance. It isn't until the 28th though so you've got a while... 

So that was my week! I hope everyone else is doing well as well and I love you all!

Bickel Choro