Tuesday, July 31, 2012

I went for a nice ride through the air (bike accident)

So this week was filled with a ton of stuff. I can hardly believe it was only a week. I guess I`ll start from the beginning though. Just remember that whatever happened in the past, I am currently doing well and feeling great. ^o^

So my adventures start with the lesson I had last monday. Or rather the journey to said lesson. Whilst I was traveling to the church to teach 二口兄弟(Brother futaguchi), I was cut off by a young kid on a bike, and so naturally I pulled hard on both my brakes. Unfortunatley, I had not yet adjusted the brakes, and the front brakes were perhaps a touch too tight. Meaning that when I pulled the brake my front tire stopped instantly and I went for a nice ride through the air, landing gracefully on my face. Luckily, i was covering my face with my hands. Honestly I don`t really remember that part though. From what I remember I picked myself off the ground and was shocked to see my hands covered in blood. and my shirt pocket ripped off. and my left arm not quite moving like it was supposed to. We had a lesson to teach though, so we proceeded to the church. I enjoyed a good amount of pain on the way. ^o^ 二口兄弟 was a little shocked to see me all poorly bandaged up (there was a first aid kit at the church) but we told him we would go to the hospital after we taught him. Since my arm probably should be able to move more than 80 ish degrees. So we taught him the lesson, and it was a really amazing experience. It was my first time describing the first vision in Japanese to someone. Afterwards, we asked him if he believed our message. He turned in the gospel restoration pamphlet to the first vision, pointed to the picture, and said, I believe this. We have met with him 3 times since then, and he is progressing very quickly! He is a chef, and insists on cooking us dinner as well, which is pretty much awesome. He came to church on sunday, but he was a little late because he was hit by a car. We forgave him. He`s pretty hurt, but for the most part OK. It wrecked his motor bike though. He lives 5 minutes from the church by bike, which is super convenient.

So after the lesson on Monday, we went to the hospital. A member drove us. Turns out I was OK, the muscles in my arm had just swollen around the bone or something like that. The trip exhausted all my emergency funds, but I should be reimbursed in about 2 weeks. (Could I have $300 on my card instead of $100 at all times just in case something like this happens again? When I get my money from the reimbursement I`ll probably buy the electronic dictionary.)

So basically this week we taught him and looked for more people (usually we look around train stations, where there are a lot of people). On Wednesday, we had a district meeting, which was really cool. We took a train up to fushimi, and met with 4 other elders, discussing all kinds of things about our district and how to improve. it was pretty great. Then we went to a 食べ放題, (a buffet). Pretty great food.

We taught English class to 4 people on wednesday, which was actually quite fun. We do that every wednesday. We also taught another investigator on Sunday, and we`ll be teaching him again on Friday. The other teaching appointments fell through, but they will take place in the near future.

I really enjoy describing/handing out the book of mormon. It is an amazing converting tool.

I already am feeling confident in saying most gospel related things in Japanese! in fact last night I completed a contact by myself where I described the nature of God, Christ and his earthly ministry and atonement, and the restoration of the church. The guy I talked to did not have any reason to doubt my Japanese speaking ability, which is always a good feeling. I was able to answer his questions and comments, and tried to set up a time to meet. He didn`t have his schedule with him though (everyone is so busy here!) but he said that he absolutely wants to talk with us and he will give us a call. Pretty awesome contact.

We had to spend half a day fixing a flat my bike had. We couldn`t fix it, so we had to take it to a bike shop that was really far away (we had to take a train and then walk 40 minutes), but now my bike is doing great. ^^

Alright, I`m running out of time. Today we`re planing to go to fushimi inari, a really cool place it sounds like. I suppose you`ll hear about it in next week`s adventures!

Oh, by the way, my arm is practically back to normal now. touching my left shoulder with my left hand is still impossible, and it aches a little, but its getting better quickly. ^^ I`d appreciate some prayers though! Thanks ^^


There are little rivers like this everywhere! so Beautiful!
New shirt please! (pocket just taken right off)
My hands weren`t that bad, I`m glad it wasn`t my face!

Lots of farm-land by our apartment.

Yes! I have made sushi in Japan!

Bugs are bigger here..... this is a 蝉. I don`t want to try to spell in it English. haha.

We could not fix this tire!! grr..... 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Japan is everything I`ve ever thought it could be and more

So I`ve been in Japan for 6 days now! Let me tell you, Japan is everything I`ve ever thought it could be and more. But more of that later.

Ok, so I have been assigned to the Joyo Area, in the Kyoto zone! pretty dang awesome!  being near kyoto, there are tons of really neat shrines and things everywhere. It`s a fairly large area, mainly country but it has some city-like parts as well, so that`s pretty cool. ^^  I was in Kobe at the mission home for 2 1/2 days, I bought my bike there! It was kind of funny, I bet the bike guys there love us. We come in, look at bike for like 10 minutes, and then buy some of there more expensive bikes after testing it out for a few seconds. haha. We always buy from the same place because they do a 2 year insurance plan for about $30. how convenient. ^o^. Anyway, while in Kobe we went street contacting with the more experienced missionaries. I went with a Japanese missionary, and we talked to a bunch of people from the way home from a buffet we all went to. it was really cool. Kobe is a really cool place. like seriously.

The next day we all found out where we were going and who our companions are. My companion is Elder Hale, from Brigham City, Utah. So he`ll be my trainer for the next 12 weeks. We are almost complete opposites but we get along well. haha. He is super energetic and social, talks rather loudly to everyone we see. haha. It`s pretty exciting. We do a ton of street contacting, which is actually my favorite way to find people thus far. If you go knock on doors, they usually don`t even open the door, all the homes have cameras and an intercom system so they don`t have to come to the door. Street contacting seems to be much more effective. The people are way awesome, too. We can usually get about 50% of the people to stop and talk to us, and they are always super nice and cool.

The first few days my bike hadn`t arrived yet (we shipped it from Kobe) so we walked everywhere. One day it poured rain like I`d never seen before. Buckets of rain. Literally. haha there was a bucket outside, like a 2 gallon size bucket, and it was filled in half an hour. so we walked quite a bit in that, haha. It didn`t rain too long, though. The weather here thus far is actually been really good. Its been overcast so its not too hot.

I went to the branch and gave my first talk / testimony in Japanese, that was exciting :D the ward is really awesome, there are about 28 members who come every week, but some less-actives come each week as well. We actually taught an investigator during the second hour, and he is really awesome! We taught him the Word of Wisdom, and when we said we don`t drink alcohol or smoke, he said he already stopped both of those. When we told him about tea and coffee, he was surprised, but he agreed to live the word of wisdom completely. Really cool experience!  After that we went to Elder`s quorum. There are 3 Elders in the ward, the others are inactive. There is no young men`s yet. Looks like our work is cut out for us! :)

So this area has some room for improvement....... that investigator is actually the only investigator the area had when I came in. We`ve been working hard to get some more investigators, though, and we have a lesson lined up for today actually! It`s P-day, but we`re desperate. haha.

Ok, so now I`ll tell you of all the cool stuff they have in Japan....... ready? haha.

Japanese stuff is awesome. Ok first, the doughnuts. imagine a krispy creme doughnut. now take out half the sugar and multiply the deliciousness by one million. Basically American doughnuts don`t compare. haha ^o^  All the toilets plug in to the wall. usually just for heated seats but sometimes for other stuff as well, I`m not completely sure what yet haha. The place we E-mail from is AWESOME. We have to pay per hour, but the computers are SUPER nice and they have big recliner chairs and unlimited drinks and ice-cream. Yeah. Ok really quickly, they have pens that erase with friction, each room has individual air-conditioning, the microwave is a one-button machine (there is a way to manually set it, but if you put something in and press start, it cooks it perfect everytime), the washing machine tells you how much soap you need, Melon-pan (bread) is to die for, and Japan is, just in general, awesome.

My companion doesn`t really like plain rice or fish or (it seems) Japanese food in general, so we usually eat different stuff. The ward is awesome, so we get a lot of food from them on Sundays for the week. A lot of it goes to me since he doesn`t like it, which is fine by me! haha ^o^.

Anyway, I`m going to see how many pics I can upload before my time runs out.



 A bunch of us from the International Branch

my district in the International Branch

My Japanese District

My Japanese Branch

Window seat!! Here's an artificial ksiland by Kobe. The flight was SOOO long. the buy next to me.... I don't think he spoke English or Japanese... he spoke Chinese and he had out his laptop the whole time. Didn't want to bother him so I o nly got up once the whole 11 hours. ouch!


 We climbed up a mountain in Kobe, pretty awesome view. This is the whole group from the MTC that went to Kobe mission.

 Play grounds in Japan are awesome. (kobe)


 My new place. Its huge and pretty nice. (joyo)

View from our place

Long road. We walked a lot the first day

A cool bridge RIGHT outside our place

A cool mall in our area

My new companion, Elder Hale 


That's what I'm talking about ^o^

 Me, E-mailing.

with Trainer, Elder Hale

with President and Sister Zinke

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Elder O'Reilly Arrives in Japan!

Trevor arrived in Japan late Monday night (Mountain Time or Tuesday afternoon in Japan)!  He was permitted to call us from both the Salt Lake airport and the Seattle airport.  On his flight from Salt Lake to Seattle he even got to teach the first lesson to the person sitting next to him.  Way to go, Trevor!

We have not heard from him since his arrival in Japan yet, but we tracked his flight, and know he got there...

His new address (or at least the mission home address) has been posted in the upper right corner of this blog.   Letters and packages are welcome! :-)

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

It's official... got my travel plans! (^o^)

This week was great. I learned an incredible amount of vocab in the last week. We teach as a companionship every day, sometimes two or three times a day. From my last lesson, I feel like I can understand almost everything and I can head the lesson if I need to. So things are going well :D. My gospel vocab may not be up to everyone else's quite yet, but I'm getting there. I've found that I'm more of a visual learner, so in order to remember any vocab, I really have to know the kanji. Although a lot of people have told me to not worry on the kanji and focus on speaking the language, I've found I can master more vocab if I study them with the kanji, with the added bonus of actually being able to read! haha.

Hosting was definitely an interesting experience. It was last Thursday, so it rained the whole time. Which is preferable to sunshine :D. I hosted 2 new missionaries, so that means I took their luggage to their residence, helped them pick up their books and get to class. yep, that's pretty much it.

Anyway so my new zone. Actually I'm kind of disappointed at the amount of English that is used. While we are in class usually everything is Japanese, but out of class not so much. Oh well. I'm still learning super fast. which is good, haha. The branch president seems to have great confidence in my ability...... on Sunday, during the Preisthood meeting, when the usual Japanese translater didn't arrive, he asked if I would translate the meeting (real time) for all the Japanese missionaries. I said "uhhh....... sure...." haha. Luckily the Japanese translater came eventually, because the speaker was not using very simple vocab. I'm sure if I had translated, the Japanese missionaries would have had a very different meeting. haha.

Everyone in my entire zone knows who I am. I don't know who anyone is. I talked to someone I'd never seen before yesterday. I asked him how long he's been here. He said "4 weeks". I said "oh, me too". He said "yeah, I know, and you're leaving next week." haha. I am often greeted by people I've never seen before, it's kind of weird. "Oh hi Elder O'Reilly, you're the one that's fluent in Japanese, right? Where did you learn it?" haha. I hear that at least once a day from someone I don't know. I'm not fluent. But I'm the only one who seems to know that part of the story.

My companions are really cool Elders. One is from Idaho, and one is from Washington. They've taught literally dozens of lessons, so they are good with Gospel Japanese, I've learned lots from them. We get along really well.

So today is my last P-day! how crazy is that?? :D I leave for Japan in 6 days! And yes, it is official. (^^) I received my travel plans last Friday, so that means my visa is in! I'm pretty crazy excited. So this Friday I'm going to in field orientation again. haha. I think it's really supposed to be a one time thing but whatever. It's an all day seminar, so hopefully I get something out of it that I didn't last time.

So if you want to write me while I'm at the MTC, do it before Friday, probably. After that send it to Japan :D This is my last P-day, so it may be a while before I respond, though.

Alright, I'm out of time, so I suppose you'll hear from me again when I'm in the land of the Rising Sun! (^o^)

Elder O'Reilly

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

First day with the Japanese district...

So I feel kind of out of place here. These Elders I am with now have been here for 10 weeks now. They've taught literally dozens of lessons in Japanese while I've taught a grand total of 4 lessons. haha. They're gospel vocabulary is beyond mine, so I'll have to catch up on that fast. :D I think as far as contributing to the lessons taught I'm doing alright. We taught as a companionship yesterday, and I was able to contribute a good amount. Having the first vision memorized helped as well. :)

I have 2 companions again, who have been together already for the first 10 weeks. Their names are Elder Hunt and Elder Larsen. They are really great Elders, so we'll be able to get a lot done. We got up this morning at 5:20 to do laundry! Honestly I don't know why so many people get up this early but the laundry room is actually kind of busy. Apparently the laundry room is so busy in the afternoon that it's not always possible to do laundry (on Tuesday, anyway).

I feel like our Japanese Vocab is very unmatched. They don't know half the words I know, and I don't know half the words they know. haha. So we can learn quite a bit from each other.

The Provo temple is closed for 2 weeks, so I suppose that I won't be going to the temple for a couple years.... haha. We are going to help clean the temple next week though! that should be cool.

We are going to be "hosting" the new missionaries on Thursday, since I'm in a branch with missionaries that have been here 10 weeks, we are given these kind of jobs. So that should be interesting.

It's actually kind of weird to see so many Americans, haha. In the international district I did not associate with many Americans, and now in this district everyone is American, so ironically, that's something I have to adjust to.

I moved into a room with the Elders that have been here for 3 weeks, just like me. There was no room in my companion's room. They are all great Elders as well. Sorry about the lack of description, but I just moved into the branch yesterday afternoon, so I don't know much myself yet. haha.

2 weeks left! This week our flight schedule should come in the mail! Pretty exciting stuff :D

Sorry about the lack of coherent flow in this post, but it's early in the morning so I'm not sure how to put this in any logical order. Oh well.

Well you'll only hear from me once more in the MTC, then I'll be in Japan! :D :D :D


Sunday, July 1, 2012

Switching to the Japanese District...

So its been an interesting week. Yesterday was not P-day, so today is instead. Yesterday, I went with my companions to In Field Oreintation, since they are both leaving for the mission field next week. It is a day-long seminar, and I'm going to have to go again in 2 weeks..... haha. I have a feeling the second time through won't be as interesting. haha.

So the cool news for the week is that I've had someone to practice Japanese with! A sister missionary from Japan moved into our district on Thursday, so I've been able to teach some more in Japanese, during the practices in class.

I move into the Japanese speaking branch this coming monday, and their P-day is Tuesday, so you'll all be hearing from me very shortly. haha. I'm going to have 2 companions again, and I kind of met them already, or I shook their hands anyway. I'll be joining them on their 10th week, and my 4th. It kind of feels like cheating, haha. I'm going to miss the international district though. We get reserved seating for devotionals and really good meal times (It's ironic that I mention that, since I used to hate the 4:30 dinner, haha), and we also have people from all over the world, which has been the coolest part of being in the international branch. Some of the missionaries have some really interesting stories. For example, one Elder from a country between russia and the Middle East was telling us how the branch presidents in his country are corrupted and they are giving tithing money to the government. The military was also against his serving a mission, so he kind of had to sneak out of the country to come to the MTC. Yeah, kind of a different experience than what I had.

I'm glad that I'll be able to practice Japanese more, but at the same time it's kind of lame that I'm moving out just when I got someone to practice with, who's actually a native speaker. Oh well.

Alright, I'll let you guys know how my new district is on Tuesday!



PS - I just thought I'd mention that I've seen many missionaries that I knew before I got here, such as Elder Blackley, Elder Rookstool, Elder Whitaker (been a while since I've seen him), Elder Campbell, Elder Young, and several others.  I saw Elder Rookstool just 3 hours after he arrived, and somehow we both had free time for about an hour, so I showed him some stuff around campus. It was fun. Yeah anyway that's all.