Sunday, July 1, 2012

Father's Day post June 17, 2012

Hi family,
It's Monday afternoon here but I think it's still Sunday in Las Vegas, right? Yesterday before church I was thinking about Dad and I made myself a huge pancake and egg and hashbrown breakfast. My breakfast-time cooking definitely isn't as good as Dad's, but it was nice to have a taste of home! I realized one of my best memories of Dad is him getting up early on Sunday mornings to make us heart and snowman pancakes. You kids better appreciate it while you can! Love you, Dad! Thank you for your uplifting emails, for your work in the temple, and for your help in the ward. You're the best!
You'll here about my week from my journal pages later (I'm still sending them two weeks behind), so for my email I'll address some questions I've been getting from the extended family:
P-Days right now aren't really that special. From what I hear, a lot of other Tokyo missionaries go see cool sites like the zoo, Tokyo tower, the new SkyTree (tallest building in the world now I think?), shrines, and all that. My companion doesn't want to though so we pretty much just buy food and do laundry and that's our P-Day. It's nice to have extra time to write letters and relax, but it's hard being cooped up in the apartment all day. Thanks to all you returned missionaries for the lectures on getting along with my companion...Heavenly Father lectures me all the time too, and so does my mission president and so do my fellow missionaries. I guess "lecture" isn't the right word---more like "lovingly encourage." I'm still having a rough time but I'm relying more on the Lord to help me get along and be more tolerant. When I absolutely have had enough, I just have to remember I only have to do this for one more month before transfers!
We have plenty of American missionaries in my zone for me to talk to when I miss speaking English. Both my zone leaders and my district leader are all from Utah, and being around them is fun because sometimes I forget that missionaries are just goofy nineteen and twenty-year old boys! Most of them, though, have already been here a year or more so their Japanese is good, they love the work, and they have so much enthusiasm for the gospel. They're great examples to me and do so much to lift my spirits and help me learn.
I'm attaching to this email a few things I've drawn this week besides my journal. Remember back in the MTC (that was another lifetime ago!) when one of my friends drew some custom pass-along cards with superheroes on them and stuff? I drew some of my own and mailed them back. So that's fun. From this same friend I got the idea of using pictures as mneumonic devices to remember vocabulary words. Right now I'm working on lesson 4 (the commandments) so the pictures are really helping me remember! I'm going to send those to some of my fellow missionaries.
Well, it sounds like you all have a TON of cool activities planned for the summer! It sounds awesome! Every time you go to a bbq have some extra cold watermelon for me down in humid, rainy Tokyo! (Rainy season started this week and it is HOT.) I'll make sure to eat extra sesame seeds and ginger for you!
I love you lots so take care,
Long Shimai

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