Saturday, September 02, 2006


Home again, home again

“You must be tired. Mina needs to recover before school starts again. We’ll just see you on the fifth.”
WHAT?!?!?! The FIFTH?!?!? My concerns over why this mother was deflecting my attempts to set up a play date with her daughter were over shadowed by the realization that I had been planning to return to school on the wrong day. The fourth, Mina goes back to school on the fourth, right? Wrong. The first day of school is the fifth. So even though this mother doesn’t seem to want to hang out with us, I still have to hang on to her because she has saved me once again. Will I ever get my act together? At least I was planning on getting to school a day early, that’s better than a day late, kind of.
That leaves me with a three day weekend. Today we walked with Ojiichan to a local fruit grower. Asian pears and grapes are now in season. There was a line of people around the traditional storehouse on the farmer’s property. We arrived about five minutes before they opened and thirty minutes passed before it was our turn to pay $12.00 for six pears and $20.00 for four bunches of grapes. Ojiichan’s treat of course.
Being back in Japan means a return to walking to the grocery store, to the station, to the post office, almost everywhere. Thank goodness, because I need to walk off my month long American food binge and it might just take me the next eleven months to do so. You should have seen me, I could not resist anything. I ate an entire three pack of Twinkies. Twinkies! I would have eaten an entire box, however I managed to show one little tiny shred of restraint in the grocery store and opted for the three pack.
Even still, the focus of our return has been on eating the foods we missed from Japan. Today’s lunch was cold udon noodles in a broth seasoned with freshly grated ginger and leek. Our first dinner home was Ma Bou Dofu and Gyoza. Toshi is a master at perfectly browning the bottoms to a golden crisp. They are so good that we already bought another pack at the store today!
Otherwise, the time has been filled getting my new train pass (it freaks me out a little that one little card is worth more than $400), signing Sam up for daycare (yes he did start screaming in his stroller as soon as we crossed the threshold of the center, even though we didn’t leave him there) and taking care of other lose ends, including a trip to the dentist for moi. Thank goodness there is a box of See’s candy in the fridge to help me through it all.

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