Friday, January 30, 2009

One Week

So with my tour of Japan ended, I'm closing down the bakagaijiin blog. You can visit me at my new blog: also lots of ocelots.

One week back. We've had some tears and some laughter. Seeing old friends has eased the transition, but we're still reverse culture-shocked, jet lagged, and yes "homesick" for Misawa. The other repatriating folks are experiencing the same - so we're not alone. We've been sympathizing over dinner and drinks.

Some things we returned to with very little trouble (carrying a single currency, restaurants, mobile phones, having family and friends close by instead of 23 hours of travelling away), some things took a bit (back to driving on the right, wearing "grown up clothes" to the office, looking like everyone else, remembering to tip) and some things are hard (sleeping well, traffic, noise, the size of stores and food portions, enormous vehicles, lack of public restrooms).

To everyone that cared for me, thought about me, read the blog with some small bit of interest in what I had to say or sent me American goodies/good vibes/ gossip while I was abroad, I cannot express my gratitude. I couldn't have done it without you.

Friday, January 23, 2009


Sayonara, Japan! In 16 hours, I'll be back in the US.

Thursday, January 22, 2009


No days in Japan remaining - we fly tomorrow.

Yeah, I screwed up my countdown. Go figure!

We had a busy day of nothing-in-particular today, with a special tour of the less-public Imperial Palace grounds, followed by the not not-so-special and riding lots of trains. We ended up visiting Toranomon to look through Japan Sword; we saw lots of beautiful swords that we couldn't afford. We had lunch at a little Udon shop, then went over to Ebisu (avoiding Ginza, since it's all luxury flagship stores and we can't afford anything there, either) and walked through the fantasic Mitsukoshi department store. We stopped at Beer Museum and had beers and a rest. Then it was over to Shibuya with its crazy famous scramble pedestrian crossing. There was lots of walking around and looking at stuff and people and places and things.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


Dewa mata, Misawa(Never again, Misawa).
So Masako, Justin, Chuck and Crocker saw us off from Misawa Airport.
And yeah, I cried a little during the flight to Tokyo.
This is leg 1 of 3 and it feels a little surreal.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


We had our final day at work today. That was it. Wow.
Tomorrow we fly down to Tokyo for a last day in the city.

Monday, January 19, 2009


We had our final out.

I thought for certain that it would be hard to leave our cute little tombo house but it wasn't as bad as I thought. With all of our things out of it, it didn't seem like "ours" any longer. In fact, you can't tell we ever lived there.

Saw Eiko in the afternoon and that was really hard. Everybody was crying. Eiko's 75 years old now and it is quite probable I won't ever see her again. That breaks my heart.

Sunday, January 18, 2009


Our last Sunday in Japan. And a typical Sunday it is, too, with the dread of the week ahead looming over everything. I'm glad to have a down day - it's been a lot of hard work and running around the last few days, but there's some vague angsty cloud hanging over everything.

The appliances have been picked up and I waxed the flooring downstairs. Our final out for the house is tomorrow and honestly, I am relieved. I just want it to be over.

I am also sick of the post office and mailing shit and I am sure my mother-in-law is sick of our shit coming to her house.

No pictures, maybe I'll get some up when I get to the hotel in Tokyo. I think they might have dedicated high-speed access.

Saturday, January 17, 2009


Feeling a bit discombobulated as well as a bit antsy. Just did some random roaming around to get out of the hotel room. Met up with Mike, Chuck and Justin for dinner.
And that's about it.

Friday, January 16, 2009


Today consisted of trying to get a kerfluffle with our vehicle sorted out and some last minute errands related to the the final move.

The house is pretty much finished, other than getting the washer, dryer and stove out. I also need to mop the kitchen and dining room, but that's it.

Ready to enjoy our last weekend in Japan.

Thursday, January 15, 2009


One week until we fly. Technically, a week and a day,but I'm counting departure as 0, not 1.

The house is packed up. It was completely amazing to see. The crew started at 8m with five guys and a girl. By late afternoon, we had 10 guys and 1 girl and they were tearing it up.

I have plenty of pictures, but need to wait until I have dedicated high-speed access to upload them. You would not believe all the boxes!

Tomorrow, I need to dust, sweep, and wax the floors. Our final out is on the 19th.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Packout has been moved! Did I mention that? It doesn't feel like much of reprieve,though. Apparently they were swamped. We found a note on the door of the house marked "URGENT." We've had some issues at work and my first thought was "Oh,crap, they didn't approve the direct invoicing for the movers. We're screwed."

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


The moving company had to reschedule us at the last minute. So instead of being packed out tomorrow (1/14) we'll be packed out on Thursday, 1/15. This doesn't affect our departure date, though, so we still fly on 1/23.

Full day, but the house is orderly, albeit barren-looking - curtains down, rugs up, pictures off the wall, cupboards empty. Crocker came and got the fridge, now we're just waiting on Kitty to get the bar and another person to pick up the washer, dryer and stove.

We're not officially living out of a hotel room, even though we checked in tonight - we are in and out of the house until the final out on 1/19.

Monday, January 12, 2009


10 Days. Not sure if I'll be able to get pictures up regularly, as my internet is being shut off today. I think that is probably the most distressing part of the move!

Sunday, January 11, 2009


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Saturday, January 10, 2009


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Friday, January 09, 2009


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Thursday, January 08, 2009


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We are officially two weeks from departure.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009


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One week left until our packout!

Tuesday, January 06, 2009


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Monday, January 05, 2009


Originally uploaded by bakagaijiin
There is nothing like moving house to bring out the utter nastiness in a relationship. A wise friend once remarked that we often treat strangers and mere acquaintances better than we do loved ones, because implicit in close relationships is a sense of entitlement.

We're having some issues with ID cards at work, so we can't get on base, we can't drive because our licenses have expired and we have been stuck in the house for five days. We have been cleaning and doing prep-work but our nerves are frayed (one individual more so than the other - can you guess who?). Here we revisit the age old battle of "Can't Find It":

"Jodi, what did you do with [my Oakley] sunglass..." (in the foyer)
"I didn't do anything with them!" (growling from upstairs)
"Well, where did they go then!" (exasperated but civil)
"Well, they didn't just fucking evaporate!" (nasty sotto voce, slamming of laundry baskets, boxes of shoes, etc)

Turns out I thought the bagged sunglasses were MY Oakleys and I packed them up.

I'm sorry, Chris.

Sunday, January 04, 2009


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Saturday, January 03, 2009


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My coolest resolution is to read all the Hugo Award Winners.
I've got the list posted over at Canary's Tusks.

Friday, January 02, 2009


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Thursday, January 01, 2009


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