Saturday, December 21, 2013

MTC Life Week 2

MTC life is great, getting really close with everyone, it's going to be sad when we all leave but that's a while away so don't need to worry about that now.

I'm so grateful to Mum's friends who sent me the bag, which I was way too excited to get to save till Christmas and it's absolutely awesome, and the box of cookies which was super nice. Getting mail is just so exciting! Haha, especially when it's these acts of kindness from people that want to help out :).

I enjoy my schedule, typically we have breakfast & personal study, class with the coolest dude ever (Brother Fowers, RM from Utah who served in Tokyo) who is super energetic and crazy fun, there's never a dull moment with him which is crucial as the class goes from 8 in the morning till 11, when we get lunch. Then we have 50 mins of gym (where I play four square and get bagged out by everyone for wearing jean shots, flippin' americans and their wannabe-kobe-bryant basketball shorts) an hour of PMG study, and TALL which is an hour on the computer for Japanese study. They are all mixed around in different orders for every day so it's not the same. We also get a bit of free time during that time, then dinner and another class. That goes till 8pm, then we have language study, planning, then back to our residence where we just talk with everyone and do fun things till bed time. Every day is different though so it hasn't got boring yet. Tuesday's devotional was by Robert Rasband and it was pretty good, but I wasn't as engaged as I was with the previous one, but it's great that they have members of the seventy and the twelve come in to the MTC to speak.

For our second class since our second day, we've been either preparing for or teaching an investigator, who we've known all along is an RM who served in Japan, but he's from Utah and speaks ONLY japanese, so we can't say a word in English otherwise we won't get it. But we've taught him four times and they were really challenging, but super rewarding, and our planning was really good I felt, but then he came in to class one day that we weren't sure whether or not we were meant to be preparing for the next lesson, and it was the first time we heard him speak in English, because he dropped his character he had been roleplaying (Shibatasan) and is now Brother Anderson, RM living about 20 mins away who served in Fukuoka. He is our teacher for our evening/afternoon class! It's awesome cause I feel like I know him really well now, he's really patient and very considerate. He's a good contrast to Brother Fowers, but they're both awesome.

We have three different teachers (we've had two others also, one was a sub, one is the teacher for the teachers - and his class was amazing and we all felt the spirit so strongly and it made everyone 20x more motivated after) brother fowers in the morning, brother anderson at night, and sister clarke at random times, who all served in Japan, and they all know Cade! If I remember correctly, Brother fowers was at the MTC the same time as Cade, sister clarke served for a year while he was out, and brother anderson said they lived in the same flat for some time on the mission I think? They all love him and say he's awesome, and they each got excited when I said I was from Tasmania and they all said "oh you know cade?" but in Japanese of course.

Everyone's Japanese has improved so much, it's crazy. We can now all say our prayers in Japanese, sing hymns without reading english characters (I could before), there are so many gospel related statements and questions we can say, and it's not just memorising things (actually it's the opposite) but we've all learnt how to understand and create sentences, with all the different tenses, bases, forms, and all this stuff that I knew about before but didn't expect to have a proper grasp on until a long way away. It's awesome. There are a few Elders in my class who came knowing 'konnichiwa' and 'sayonara' and that's it. Now they offer prayers, not speaking a word of english, etc. I'm really grateful for how much we have all learnt.

The sleep is the hardest thing for me though, I fall asleep in 4/5 of the things we do which sucks but I'm getting better! In priesthood on sunday I got called out by the branch president! I was sitting their and I was asleep, and what woke me up was President Butler saying "Wheeler Choro, you're not going to fall asleep on us are you?" in front of our whole branch who were all looking at me grinning. In my raspy zombie voice I was like "nahhh" and he's like "maybe if you sat up right it might help you stay awake for this" and gave me a big smile and so I did and I stayed awake the rest of priesthood, as hard as it was. But I fell asleep during the next thing. I love my branch and my presidency, they are so awesome. They know what it's like being a young man, so they love having a bit of fun. They're the opposite of what I was expecting, I don't want to say goodbye to them haha. But again, that's not for some time. Sometimes I fall asleep in weird positions and when I wake up I can't feel like leg or arm for like 6-7 minutes. Yesterday I fell asleep during study while we were in class and I was woken up by two of my Dai Senpai (my two zone leaders) poking my face and I honestly looked like two-face because half of my face was just super red from me laying on my arm for some reason. But! I only ever fall asleep for a few minutes before I'm good to go. Last night was the first night I made it to bed on time (seriously it's so hard) but every night I try my hardest to be in bed, ready to sleep at 10:30 because usually I get ready but then pray and read scriptures which takes me a few minutes over time. I've been improving every day!

It's a lot more relaxed here than I thought, I mean I was expecting 1940s Russia to be honest, and though the fence is a little intimidating, every one who teaches us is totally awesome and they truly love us. All our male teachers, leaders all give us hugs at the end of everything. Meetings, classes, before bed. Everyone gives each other hugs and says 'aishitte imasu' which means I love you, but you wouldn't say it in Japan unless, say a husband were saying it to his wife, but everyone's laid back enough to not care about that haha. I love it here, I don't want to leave.. let's see what I say in 8 weeks, but when Brother Anderson was talking about Fukuoka I was getting so excited for it! So I'll be sad to leave some of my friends who aren't going to Fukuoka like Elder Barr, Moua, Lewis, and so on. And the funniest thing of it all, is they all love Lizzie! I have photos of my friends and family on my study desk and they love looking through them. It's pretty hilarious. But I love all the Elders, we're all best friends and we are definitely all making the most of our time together.


We get to e-mail on Christmas day, so expect one from me then! I also hope to send a photo or two then.


Love you all,
Elder Wheeler


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