Sunday, June 8, 2008

June 8

Dear Family & Friends,

This week I (Pat) was able to go on two dai bo-okens. The first was on Friday to Kamakura (# 13 on your Tokyo map). It is about 2 hours away by train. It is most famous for it’s huge statue of the Buddha, but we didn’t even go look at it—we were there to look at the hydrangeas! There was a gaggle of gaijin women, seven to be exact: Sis. Hill, Sis. Evans (wife of the Area President), Sis. McArthur (wife of the Pres. of the Japan Missionary Training Center), Sis. Marker (wife of new Area Executive Secretary), Sis. Jarvis (wife of Area Psychiatrist), Jean (a friend of theirs who is from England), and me (Pat)!! We all had a great time together and enjoyed looking at the temples, buildings, statues, Buddhas (one was created in 721 A.D., another in 1100 A.D.), bells, hydrangeas, irises, waterfalls, ponds, etc., etc., etc. I am going to download the photos onto our blog. We stayed there in the area for 5 hours, going to 3 different sites. All were interesting and beautiful!!

Then on Saturday Jim & I went to a beautiful garden here in Tokyo that was built in 1650 A.D. It was carefully laid out to be pleasing to the eye and gladden the heart. We loved walking around and looking at everything. It had a beautiful garden of irises, a pond of lily pads, and the remains of some very old buildings. It’s hard to imagine it could be in the middle of this big city, but it was here first and the city grew around it. There are a number of beautiful gardens in this city and we are going to try to see them all, plus all the other neat stuff that is here.

Our word this week is: o-nagai shimas (oh naguy she mas) It means “please”.

Jim & I celebrated our 35th wedding anniversary yesterday and today. We love each other more today than we did 35 years ago. We have so many wonderful memories of children and family and friends—and you are all included in these great memories. Thank you for making our lives richer and better by being a part of them.

We are feeling the affects of age—both of us have knee problems, I have weak legs, we both have graying hair, etc. But we are happy doing the Lord’s work and feeling the peace in our lives that the Gospel brings.

We pray that all of you are happy and well and enjoying your lives. We know we are!!

Love, Jim & Pat

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