to Kyushu and back




First domestic Japanese trip was a blessing with such relaxed fellow travelers





first glimpse of kyushu


and after a few hours in the air we arrived (sign says: welcome to kagoshima)



most of the land was forested and hilly like this


Imada-san (Carrie & Akihiro's neighbor was able to join us on the trip) taking good care of Kenji-kun


Apparently Japan loves going right from halloween decorations to christmas lights


The reputable and delicious kurobuta (black pig) restaurant where we met sister Iwama-san



Even at 89 years old she can still sit on the floor, with a few extra cushions of course



I smiled to find a ferris wheel (かんらんしゃ)in the view from my hotel room


At Iwama-san's home she invited us to sit at her kotatsu (table with heat underneath and blankets around to keep heat in). And she shared her testimony of Jesus Christ in her life back from her 20s. And Akihiro helped translate for me. This is one of the several testimonies I've had a chance to listen to and I pray God will be glorified through her story.


The next day we took a boat to sakurajima with a big active volcano. Apparently it just erupted last August and the town was covered in soot. There are still many people living there however so the island must be worth it.


We also visited a playground at Dinosaur Park where the adults seemed to have just as much fun as the kids.
Our last evening together with sister Iwama-san


Found a 3,000 year old tree kept alive in the train station
My first ekiben (train station lunch), taking the shinkansen from kagoshima to fukuoka to meet sister kido-san


super pretty and diverse (maybe I'll be able to make it to that '32 types of food a day' goal that I've heard about for so long)


We met sister Kido-san in the train station and found a dessert shop to sit and talk about her testimony until it was time to go to the airport to head back to tokyo. (Above: a green tea cake with mochi, ice cream, and sweet bean)
We had a short moment to take a couple pictures before it was time to catch our flight. Listening to Kido-san share her testimony was so special. She has been a faithful member even from such a distance away and her unique story will stay with me. It was also a blessing that Imada-san was able to listen in as well. And again, Akihiro was willing to be my translator for which I am so glad. Talking about such spiritual matters, it is so much better that they can speak naturally.
Kido-san, Imada-san, Carrie and Kenji-kun, and me
After the flight home, we found the car and got on the road. This photo is taken on Rainbow Bridge in Tokyo looking back at the ferris wheel near Haneda airport.


The next day was Sunday which I spent in Tokyo. Murimori-san was willing to share her testimony of Christ as well. She started her journey while at a different church but we feel so blessed to have her worshipping with us.


At lunch time a few of my international school friends were also able to join me and we had a great time catching up again. They joined the church for lunch and the afternoon bible study. I was sad I couldn't spend more time with them but thankful for the time we had.
Chantha (from Cambodia), me, and Nguyen (Vietnam)