Monday, July 17, 2017

This week was Groovy - week 47

Hey everybody!

This week was SUUUUPER sweet. And by SUUPER sweet, I mean that there was not all that much crazy or cool stuff, it was pretty normal. Not a bad normal, just normal normal. But hey, we might be going to a 1000 year old golden temple today, and we went out for sushi twice this week, so that was pretty sweet (just so you know, はま寿司 (Haha Sushi) is better than スシロー (Sushiro) which is better than かっぱ寿司(Kappa Sushi), it's all about those five different types of soy sauce and crazy wide selection of fish).

DO NOT READ IF YOU DON'T CARE ABOUT FOOD OR ARE HUNGRY
I decided to make chashu this week (Chinese sliced pork that you put on ramen) and I don't know how I did it and I would never be able to replicate it, but I basically made the best-tasting chashu I have ever had in my entire life(well, second best, the first time I ever tried chashu at 優勝圏 (literally "winning place") it straight blew my mind). I also ended up making ramen soup-base while I was making it, so I made up an Elder Orgill from-scratch ramen and it was amazing. If anyone wants to co-found a ramen shop in Utah, I'm down. Also tried a ramen shop we found in Kitakami while we were there for interviews and I found a hot and sour ramen, which also blew my mind a little bit, basically the ramen version of my favorite soup ever so #blessings. Also added sweet and sour pork (酢豚)to the recipe arsenal this week. And, I got to try mustard-flavored soft serve at the festival, which was actually waaaay better than I was expecting. 

FOOD TALK OVER FEEL FREE TO RESUME NORMAL READING

The coolest thing we had this week was probably the little festival we went to on Saturday. We heard about a festival in this town just north of 一関 (Ichinoseki) called Hiraizumi, and we thought we'd go and make a showing and talk to some people and be friendly and try to pass out flyers for our English class. So the festival is based around people picking up and carrying these big arc-of-the-covenant-looking-altars down the street in cool blue judo gi-looking things, and I'm pretty sure people just dump water on them as they march by. Super cool, right? Super Japanese-y. But turns out the big main festival was yesterday on Sunday, and Saturday was more of the family event version where basically all of the first graders in Hiraizumi get together and put on their little costumes and pick up little versions of the arc and march around and wow, it was the cutest thing I have ever seen. This one kid saw us and just started pointing at us and said ”外国人、スゲ! which means "foreigners, cool!". He kept spotting us whenever we moved around, and we were play-shooting each other with ki blasts and basically we made some good homies. We met some cool guys from Australia too (I see you Elder Barr), and one of the guys was using words like "groovy" unironically, and it kind of made me question my entire descriptive vocabulary. We also got given a couple of bottles of green tea tea by a guy who we were talking to, which is the funniest because we don't drink TEA. But yeah, met and talked to some really solid people, sharing the gospel one chubby six year old Japanese kid at a time.

The other super cool thing this week was 手話 (sign language) circle, where we learned hand language and it was legit! We show up randomly and it turns out the missionaries used to go all the time and everybody there loves missionaries and is hilarious and super nice and we met two people who used to be investigators and we spent an hour talking to this super chill fifty-something year old deaf guy who was HILARIOUS and has good taste in ramen and used to play AMERICAN FOOTBALL?!?!?! when he was younger, and we became homies right off the bat. It still surprises me how much I can say in my very limited 手話,(sign language) probably all the Gift of Hands (that was a gift of tongues joke). From what I have seen, deaf people in Japan are a lot more American-seeming than most Japanese people, there are some cultural nuances they either don't pick up on or just don't follow, and they end up being a lot more fun and outgoing and loving and all that, I love Japanese deaf people. Also his six year old granddaughter was there too and being kind of annoying and it was adorable to see the grandpa-granddaughter relationship, basically 手話 (sign language)circle is now my favorite part of the week.

So in interviews with President Sekiguchi this last week, he was talking to me a little bit about how I can use my talents for good and I ended up telling him about how I am using my little sampler to take samples of the sounds of Tohoku, and he thought that was really cool and basically wants to get me an interview with a newspaper and maybe television station and use that as a tool for finding. Crazy, right? crazy COOL. He's an inspired man and he has a lot of love in him for his missionaries. I am excited to work with him and try to use the special talents I have as a way to help, serve, find, and teach others. You all have talents too, you might not even recognize them, but try to find them or maybe ask a friend or family member to help you find them. Identify them and strengthen and use them, and it will change your life and the lives of those around you. Do it. And maybe read the parable of the talents in the New Testament if you want to, that's also a good one.

Love all y'all and I hope you have a wonderful week!

オーギル長老 (Elder Orgill)

(Random fun stuff, it's like 90 degrees and a billion percent humidity every day here, but turns out I actually like the heat; I guess I really am from California)

Panorama from Motsuji (temple)

Obligatory weekly food picture -- awesome ramen

Picture planted in a rice field

"Ya Boy"

I don't know what this is but it was cool

"Waiting Princess Waterfall". What is she waiting for? Probably more
pictures of Elder Orgill's food

Literally built into a rock

Gorge near Ichinoseki

The lads at the Gorge

Look at this GORGEous photo
get it? GOREGEous? Because it's a gorge. Haha. Nice.
video
Video from local festival