Elder Tolen's Transfer History

Elder Tolen's Transfer History
Elder Tolen's Transfer History


Monday, January 19, 2015

Week 7: The Return of the Canadian, and Kicking Cans

An Interesting Local Statue, Providing Some Entertainment for Elder Tolen

This week was way fun. Let's see. So to start things off, I'll just tell about a story that I had this week.

So Elder Livingston and I were walking to go do some "housing" around a train station, when we passed a park with a bunch of 13-year-olds playing soccer. They were playing a weird 4-square-esque game, but with a soccer ball, and you could only use your feet. We knew we had to go play, so we went. It was super awkward at first. The kids didn't think we could speak any Japanese, even though we asked if we could play IN Japanese, but they just sat around and were saying things like, "What do we do with them? We can't let them play!" Eventually they just told whoever wasn't in the square that they had to kick the ball back and forth with us. That went on for about 30 minutes, and then they took a break. None of them really talked to us, but after a while, we went back to doing what we were doing.

Eventually they were like, "Hey! Let's play a game!" So we were like "Yeah!" So we got split into teams. It was really funny. They asked where I came from so I said, "Utah. Just kidding, I'm actually Japanese." Then I let that sit for a second before saying, "Just kidding." They didn't get it at first, but then one of them said, in English, "Oh! American joke! Hahaha!" So they all started laughing. It was funny. After a while of playing the game, they were like, "Alright! Half-time!" So we took a break. I think they were all going easy on me. I'm terrible at soccer. But soon they were like, "Hey, let's go play this game called Kick the Can!" It wasn't actually called that, but it was the exact same game. So we went and did that. I have never felt so strange, yet so normal at the same time.  When else, besides missionary work, would it be socially acceptable for two 19-year-old young men to play Kick the Can in a park with a group of 13 year old kids? After that, we invited all of them to church, but they said they had a soccer game. But those kids when they are older will always remember the time two white guys from the Mormon church came and played soccer with them, and maybe when they are older, they will be more willing to hear the Missionaries. That was amazing--so fun!

Then on Sunday, remember that Canadian guy I said we met at the train station [see last week's post]? We found him again! It was crazy! We walked out of church, and he just came up and was like, "Hey! I was just coming to find you guys!" The crazy thing is, we had just gotten out of Ward Council, and it went way long. If we hadn't gotten out exactly when we did, we wouldn't have been able to find him! It was awesome! So we start talking and he's like, "Is it alright if I walk with you guys?" So we were like, "Sure!" So we just started walking. Then we started talking about his beliefs, and baptism was brought up so I was like, "Well, do you want to be baptized?" So he said, "You know, I wouldn't mind being baptized a Mormon. But I don't think I would be a very good one, Hahahaha!" So we all laughed, and we just kept walking and talking. We actually did this for about 3 hours. It was awesome! Afterwards, we walked him to the train station and he was like, "Well, I want to go see the Hobbit part 3 tonight--you guys want to come?" I almost cried, I wanted to so bad, but the missionary part of me was like, No way, Jose.

But before we left, we gave him a Book of Mormon, and asked him if he would read it, and pray about it, and he said yes! As we were walking away, he was reading it. I was so happy. We finally got his phone number so we can meet again. He is such a cool guy, I wish I had a picture with him. Next time we meet I'll be sure to grab a picture with him.

So today for P-Day, Elder Livingston and I went to a Japanese temple, and got a lot of amazing pictures.  I'll be sure to send them. President Wada ended up not being able to meet our group for interviews this week, so our interviews won't be until February. Also, next week is Temple Tuesday, so I won't be writing until Tuesday instead of Monday. I love you guys! I hope you all are doing well! Until next week!

Elder Tolen

Photos:  In Japan, they have parties to celebrate the birthday of everyone who turns 20 during the year. This was one of the ward members in her party attire--what a stunning kimono!  Elder Tolen and Elder Livingston decided to just have some fun with a strange statue they found (above). They caught a shot of the bullet train as it rushed beneath a bridge they were on (I asked Zach not to lean over bridges where bullet trains were rushing past any more...). The other two are steps leading up to a temple/shrine, and the Japanese temple itself that Elder Tolen and Elder Livingston visited on p-day. Zach didn't remember the name of it.

A Ward Member in Her 20th Birthday Kimono
The Bullet Train on Its Way Through the City
Stairs Leading Up to the Japanese Temple that Elder Tolen and Elder Livingston Visited on P-Day

Beautiful Japanese Temple

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