Sunday, September 17, 2017

Let's try living in Japan for a while! week 1...

It was a crazy long trip here, burdened as I was with mega luggage (and a bike) - this is the nature of a one way plane ticket.  After the interminable 12 hour plane ride, it was a 3 hour bus ride, and then a 1 hour car ride.  Nice sunset while trundling along the country side.


I've been here almost a week now and we are getting ... slightly..? more settled into the routine here.

We still don't have a place to call our own and are living at Sato's parents house, which is a little awkward at times.  Imagine living as an adult with your own parents, and that's about right.

I've been for a couple short runs here, but everyday is super busy with trying to organize and get started with our lives here.  Priorities include: getting our own place, getting Ame in school, getting our cell phones functional, getting health insurance, getting a car, getting the tons of other stuff needed for daily living.... etc...  Japan is awesome in it's bureaucracy so that slows everything considerably.

Some progress has been made: after viewing dozens of properties, we've finally now put in a rental application for a new Mansion!  So, you might assume, things are about to get pretty luxuriant, pretty fast!

This is maybe where I should mention that "mansion" in Japan does not mean the same thing as everywhere else, here it means: "condo".  Ah well.  It is a nice 3  bedroom space and in a good location fairly close to downtown but not too far from Sato's parents house (for childcare assistance!).  Additional bonuses include a good public elementary school and a short walk to Mosburger and a ton of other restaurants.

Here are some shots of the view from inside, and of some of the interior.  As per normal Japan rentals: no curtains, no major or minor appliances, no furniture, no kitchen cabinetry... It's a bit crazy, made a bit more crazy by the fact there is not any form of craigslist here!  Everyone just buys new for the most part.  Ug.

front view

back window view

chez fieldwalker, in Japan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Food here has been the treat it's always been.  We've been going a bit crazy trying all our old haunts for very good and fairly inexpensive food.

Trying to limit ourselves to one meal out per day!

this was amazingly good.
Mos time!

eating some weird mochi things
Ame hasn't had a day of school yet and is in desperate need of getting going with that.  Just lots of bureaucracy involved and we are slowing wading through it.  Hopefully she starts day after tomorrow, with Monday tomorrow being a holiday.

Today, Sunday, we've had a typhoon hit.  I don't think they get names here though, just numbers.  So by tomorrow I'll know what Hurricane/ typhoon  # '185' goes.  Just quite windy right now.

One other bit of news was the party for Sato's Grandfather.  He turned 100 about 6 months ago. Anyway, the mayor of his little town finally came by as part of his officialdom and we had a little green tea party together.   Grampa had already received his prizes from prime minister Shinzo Abe and the prefectural minister so the major was the last guy to chime in with some accolades.  The mayor made a point of requesting we all move away from Himeji and into his little town and declared I could instantly have a language teacher job if I so desired.  We said we'd think about it to get him off our backs!

at Sato's grandpa's house

"Kuromitsu" (means 'black syrup') the neighbors dog

some swag for getting to 100

a tired little bus hiding in the bamboo forest

nice car for one person

Hurricane #185 hitting us tonight

big dude I almost stepped on while jogging
Holy cow - weather is currently going beserk outside.  Raining, blowing and lightning like I've never heard.  So this is what a hurricane sounds like!  Hopefully house stands in the morning!!
grampa and the gang

more of grandpa's swag for getting to 100+
OK, we are still here the next morning.  We survived the hurricane, in fact everything seems about the same as it did yesterday.  This is not Houston Texas.

One other important note: the internet here sucks.  We loose connectivity, with daily regularity.  I was going to publish this last night but we lost internet before I could post.  Blerg!   We are hoping once we get into our own apartment that we will be more connected, till then communication with us will be Spartan.

Catching (and releasing) dragonflys!
One more bonus update from today: we bought a car!  High rollers that we are: it's a Toyota Vitz!  We were planning on getting a yellow plate (660cc motor) but there wasn't really any cost savings with it, so we just went with a fairly normal car.  While a Vitz is small for Canada, it's larger than 50% of cars in Japan since it's much bigger than a yellow plate Kei car.   So we are sort of road hogs in the massive 1.3 litre engine Limousine we drive.
NEW (for us) Car!


  1. also known as the Toyota Yaris!!!!!!!!

  2. So great to get your NEWS! Loved the pictures. Be assured you all are very missed here in NV. If you have enought internet juice for whatsapp please give it a try! Auntie Hil.