Tongue Twisters

I was called to serve in Japan in the seventies. Back then, they sent us to the Missionary Training Center in Hawaii. I spent two months there, learning the language and preparing to serve. When we arrived in Japan, we spent the first day with the Mission President and the Assistants. After a great pep-talk, we were all put on the high speed train to venture on to our various assignments. At the end of a long day, I was the last missionary left on the train. Sitting across from me was a very kind, Japanese couple. After nodding and smiling at much of what they were saying to me, I finally understood as they asked me when I arrived in Japan. I replied in my broken Japanese “I arrived tomorrow.” I had intended to say ‘yesterday’. Apparently, after two months of studying the language, I couldn’t even remember the difference between two drastically different words. I had a long road ahead of me. A few months later, after what I thought was plenty of experience to iron out my newly learned Japanese, we were teaching the first lesson to a family. They were listening attentively and, though I was unsure of their interest level, they were bright-eyed and welcoming. At the appropriate moment, I began reciting the first vision. When I came to the word ‘personages’ I unknowingly replaced it with the word ‘carrots’. The cordial family kept smiling and made no reaction. My companion was kind enough to inform me of my foil after the lesson was over. Either the spirit helped them understand or they were just too kind to point it out to me. Elder Johnson Japan Tokyo 1974-1976

2016-10-14T22:02:04+00:00 February 1st, 2013|Uncategorized|0 Comments

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