02 October, 2017

My weekend

I barely sat down on Saturday. Then yesterday afternoon I took a welcome break for a few hours after lunch before I did some boy-ferrying in the car (for a local friend's party) and got our prayer letter out. All-in-all, it was a pretty busy weekend.

Saturday was cross-country for the fifth Saturday in a row. We have next Saturday off and I'm looking forward to a sleep-in!

I took some more photos of the WW2 remains that are everywhere in the place where the cross country is held. This is a concrete ammunition bunker (the photo below gives more details, the plaque was next to the bunker). They stored ammunition here in WW2. 

Next to the bunker was a log with this intriguing fungi growing on it.

It was a fairly short meet, so we were home soon after 12 (a lot shorter than a wrestling or track and field meet!). At 1 I took off again, this time to a very different venue. From a place where few people go, to a place that, it seems, everyone was!

I met my two Bible story/study friends (yes, we're still meeting 11 months later). They wanted to meet at Harujuku, which is a swanky part of Tokyo. Very popular spot too! I've only been there a couple of times previously and there are always crowds.

One of the ladies used to live in New Zealand (she is, however, Taiwanese). She discovered pavlovas there (an Australian/New Zealand version of meringue that is served with cream and fruit). Her adult daughter found a restaurant in Tokyo that serves pavlova and went there a while ago. She recommended her mum check it out. So that is how we ended up in a restaurant that charged a wee bit more than I'd usually be willing to pay for coffee and dessert! We weren't disappointed by the taste, though, it was delicious.

Glamorous, though it was, I did do a lot of standing. I stood on the train all the way (only 35 minutes), and then we stood in line for about 45 minutes to get a seat. I stood most of the way home too. However the cool thing about travelling around by train in Tokyo is that you get lots of steps and stairs in without trying hard at all. Altogether, with the walking we did at cross country, I walked 5.8 km and did 23 "flights of stairs" according to the Health app on my phone.

From another perspective, it is strange to me, doing a Bible study in a fancy (but noisy) restaurant. The line didn't disappear while we were there. I do admit to feeling a bit pressed as we studied the Bible, knowing that we were sitting in seats that other people were waiting for.

This Bible study (with two non-Japanese ladies who are working in Japanese companies) is as good for me as it is for them. Life isn't easy for either of them. Getting Christian fellowship is challenging for them too. I'm grateful to be able to help them and encourage them, not to mentioned help us all learn stories from the Bible more deeply. It's good for me to go outside what I usually do, and this is definitely that (I have to admit that it feels more like what a "real"missionary would do: go out and do a Bible study with someone). Hearing their perspectives on life and working in Japan is good for me to grow in understanding. Many of my friends are missionaries, it's good to be friends with a couple of ladies who are different to me and stretch me.

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