Rain on My Parade

Well…not literally…well…it is raining here, an awful lot, which always brings down spirits.  Today has been a strange series of events…which have no collective meaning except that they provide some musing for me this evening.  This morning we had our cell group Bible Study.  We decided that we are going to read through 1 Timothy sequentially several times throughout the week and then discuss what we got out of it in our group.  We couldn’t find the CDs for the worship songs, so we did most of them acapella with me leading, poorly…but then I got up the nerve and offered to sit at the piano and play around for some songs.  It was great…and when we got down there, we found the CDs, but decided to stick with the piano for a couple songs.  I enjoyed it, and they seemed to enjoy it as well, despite my pitiful piano playing skills.  Aki couldn’t make it to cell group because she and Taka were at the doctor’s getting their first sonogram!  The baby is now 10cm long, and they said it was moving around a lot, and you could see its spine and some features.  Very cool.  I’m still pretty sure I don’t want one…but I love hearing about it for others and getting excited for them.

Today I got to write and mail a letter that I was thoroughly excited to write and mail.  I’m really enjoying walking down to the post office to mail my letters off.  It’s pretty fun.  They know me in there now and we don’t exchange much conversation…but as I pick up on the language, I hope that will change. They’re really nice.  On my way from the train station to the church, I passed several groups of kids who had just been released from school.  One cluster of jr high girls walked by and one said, “Hello!”  and when I said hello back, they giggled all the way down the street.  It was a long street…and I think I giggled just as much as they did.  It’s kind of fun being a celebrity-of sorts.

Classes were a little more difficult today.  The women in my Wednesday class are so much more reserved and stand-offish.  I have such a hard time getting them to open up.  The two women are school teachers, 3rd grade, I think.  The other is a college student…so they are all pretty busy.  Here in Japan, at the younger grades, the teachers visit the families of their students.  They get to know the families and what the child’s daily life is like.  Pretty interesting…and I think maybe something that might be helpful for our own classrooms back home.  So, Miwa had spent most of the afternoon and evening visiting families, in the rain.  I did not envy her.  She’s doing it all this week.  She’s the one whose son killed himself a few months ago.  We’re still not sure of the circumstances or the timeline, because they are very weird about death here.  They don’t talk about it…especially when it’s suicide.  It’s probably the biggest shame a child can put on their parents, to die before they do.  I believe her son was in his late 20s, maybe 30s..I’m not sure.

Misa, brought in an article on the G7 meeting on the economic stability of the US.  It was so strange to hear her reading through all this economic jargon and then ask me to explain it to her.  How do you explain a crisis that reverberates throughout the world?  Very carefully.  She seemed to enjoy my examples and illustrations.  We never do a Bible time in her class…so it was neat to be able to talk about world peace and whether we think it could ever be.  I didn’t feel an opening to say that only with Christ can there be world peace, and He will make it so in the end.  But I left it that people are too selfish all around the world and therefore could never be at peace with each other.  She agreed.  So strange, discussing politics and whatnot in Japan…I rarely do it in America.  🙂

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