This is Kobe, Japan.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

20 Nov (21 Nov in Japan) 2011 Sennan Japan

Week 73
Mission Log
Why, hello everybody!  How are you all doing today?  Things went pretty well this week.  The new area is pretty good.  There a lot of really great members in this new area.  Also, I`m started to get all the streets and places down pretty well.  The one downfall of the Sennan area is that there are huge hills that we have to ride up all over the place.  I guess, I shouldn`t say "the one downfall" because whenever we have to go anywhere, it`s really more like three downfalls and seven mountains that we have to climb up.  It`s pretty difficult getting around here on a bike.  It`d be nice if we had a car or something.  No one in this mission has a car, though.  Every area is a bike area.  Only the office elders and the assistants to the president drive cars. In Japan, it cost a couple thousand dollars to get a driver`s license.  Also, you have to be eighteen or older in order to drive.  My new companion is cool.  I`m trying to help him get used to Japan and to being a missionary.  He`s working hard and doing a great job.  No, I`m not a zone leader this transfer. The church is about a twenty minute bike ride away from the apartment building. 
The pictures that you sent this week didn`t work, and they didn`t work last week either.  Just a bunch of random letters and numbers showed up instead.  The computer is going really slow and freezing up again this week and I think it`s because of the pictures that didn`t work.  Speaking of pictures, the battery on my camera died and I lost the cord that you charge it with.  It`s a cord that you plug directly into the camera.  The camera is a samsung and I haven`t seen any samsung stores around in Japan.  I can`t take any more pictures without the cord. 
My bike has a bit of a problem.  My left break was always really week.  You had to pull it really hard in order to slow down.  Also, the right break can slow me down just fine, but if I pull it, it stays pulled until I reach down to the tire and take it off.  Because of that, I would always just use my left break and only use the right one if I have to stop very quickly or go down a big hill or something.  It was my back-up emergency break type thing.  For various reasons I switched bikes with my companion for two days.  He then said that he couldn`t ride my bike because the breaks were too bad.  I figured he just wasn`t used to my breaks and didn`t know how to us them.  We switched back, and then we started going down the biggest hill in the area.  I`m pulling the left break as hard as I can, but because it`s so worn out and weak, it isn`t really doing anything.  I`m still going really fast.  There area some really sharp turns at the bottom of the hill, but I wasn`t worried, because I figured I could just pull my emergency break and slow down.  However, when I tried to pull my right break, nothing happened.  The break thing pretty much fell off of my handlebar and the were no breaks to slow me down.  That`s when things got a bit scary.  I had to use my feet as breaks (probably wearing out a lot of the soles), but I was able to make the turns ok.  I`ve been riding around with pretty much no breaks for the last couple of days.  It`s scary at times, but I`ve been ok.  We`re going to go get my bike fixed today.  My companion still claims that he didn`t do anything to my bike, though.  I don`t know what caused this problem. 
It`s gotten really cold for riding a bike around all of the time, but not cold enough for snow to fall.  I hear that it doesn`t really snow much in Sennan.  I hope that I at least, get to see some snow. 
Have a good week everyone.  I`ll talk to you later.  Bye. 
-Elder Isaac Swift

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