Mailing Address:

Elder Jarron McKay Molen
Japan Tokyo South Mission
1-7-7 Kichijoji, Higashi-cho
Musashino-shi, Tokyo
180-0002 JAPAN

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Opening the LDS Mission Call

     Jarron received his call May 4, 2015.  By 9 pm our house was filled with the most amazing group of friends and family there to support him. Jarron's grandparents joined in by speakerphone as he opened the letter. 

     In a few months, he will officially be "Elder Molen." He enters the MTC on July 22, 2015, to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ to those in the Japan, Tokyo South Mission.

Did you know?
1. Raw horse meat is a popular food in Japan.
2. On average there are around 1,500 earthquakes every year in Japan.

3. Sometimes the trains are so crowded railway staff are employed to cram passengers inside.

    Photo found at:

4. The term karaoke means "empty orchestra" in Japanese.
5. More than 70% of Japan consists of mountains, including more than 200 volcanoes, 60 of which are active. Mt. Fuji, the tallest mountain in Japan, is an active volcano.
6. Late night dancing is illegal in Japan.  They are currently in the process of trying to overturn the ban.
7. Religion does not play a big role in the lives of most Japanese.  Christmas is celebrated by most Japanese as a lover's holiday like Valentine's.
8. Japan has the second-lowest homicide rate in the world, .50 per 100,000 people.
9. There are four different writing systems in Japan; Romaji, Katakana, Hiragana, and Kanji.

10.  In Japan, snowmen are made of two large snowballs, not three.

11.  Ōkunoshima, Japan is an island full of rabbits.  Hunting is not allowed and dogs and cats are not permitted on the island.
12. Sumo wrestling is Japan's national sport, but more spectators watch baseball.
13. Japan consists of over 6,800 islands.
14. In 1997, 685 kids in Japan were rushed to hospitals after an intense Pokémon episode that caused dizziness, vomiting and seizures.
15. When you use the restroom in someone's   home you may need to put on designated bathroom slippers so as not to contaminate the rest of the home.
16. Noodles are slurped somewhat loudly when eaten. It has been said slurping indicates the food is delicious.  The slurping also serves to cool down the hot noodles for eating.

17. Farmers grow square watermelons because they are easier to stack and store.

18. In Japan, there are more pets than children.
19. Japan has 5.52 million vending machines.
20. Sleeping on the job is acceptable in Japan as it is viewed as exhaust from working hard.
21. In Japan it is not uncommon to eat rice at every meal, including breakfast.
22. Average life expectancy in Japan is one of the highest in the world. Japanese people live an average of 4 years longer than Americans.
23. Japan is the largest automobile producer in the world.
24. It is considered inappropriate to blow your nose in public.
25. Tsukiji market in Tokyo is the world's largest fish market.
26. Most toilets in Japan have a built-in bidet system for spraying your backside.  However, in some train stations and other public restrooms you may still find the traditional Japanese "floor toilet."

27. Japan has cafes where people can play with puppies and kittens.
29. In Japan there is a train that floats above the tracks by magnetism.
30. Due to gases produced by power plants, Japan sometimes suffers from acid rain
34. Raised floors help indicate when to take off shoes or slippers. At the entrance to a home in Japan, the floor will usually be raised about 6 inches indicating you should take off your shoes and put on slippers. If the house has a tatami mat room its floor may be rasied 1-2 inches indicating you should take off your slippers.
35. Ramen noodles are a popular food in Japan and it is widely believed extensive training is required to make a delicious soup broth.

36. It takes about 7-10 years of intensive training to become a fugu (blowfish) chef. Some fish farms in Japan are now producing non-poisonous fugu.

37. Ovens are not nearly as commonplace as rice cookers in Japanese households.
38. In Japan, there's a 'Crying Sumo' contest' where wrestlers compete to see who can make a baby bawl first.
39. Crooked teeth are considered attractive. This belief is so deep seated that girls usually go to the dentist to have their teeth un-straightened.
40.Squid is the most popular pizza topping.
41. Some Japanese companies conduct a morning exercise session for the workers to prepare them for the day's work.
42. In Japan non-smoking areas are difficult to find in restaurants, including family restaurants. Many of Japan's politicians have interest in the tobacco industry and anti-smoking laws are almost non-existent.
43. Many companies hire people to hand out small packages of tissues which include a small advertisement flyer.  Some non-Japanese are surprised when they are handed a free package of tissues.
44. Most streets in Japan have no name.
45. Japanese families often use the same water for bathing.
46.The Japanese have a tradition of going to KFC during Christmas.
47. It is considered rude to say “no” to someone directly in Japan.
48. Tearing off a gift wrapping is considered impolite in Japan.
49. It is considered rude to walk while you are eating in Japan.
50. Bus drivers in Japan usually turn off their vehicles at red lights to reduce pollution.
51. In addition to a "boneless smile", small eyes, a round puffy face, and plump body were considered attractive features, especially during the Heian period.


52. It was customary in ancient Japan for women to blacken their teeth with dye as white teeth were considered ugly. This practice persisted until the late 1800's.  The American style smile (big, wide, and white) would have been seen as "exposing too much bone."

53. Police in Japan usually carry around paint balls to shoot at fleeing motorists. This allows them to identify them more easily.

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