August 21, 2003

and i am off!

In front of my apt. with 2 bulging suitcases, 2 nervous cats, a backpack that feels like it is full of bricks, and a shoulder bag that doesn't close.I would not be able to move without my generous mom. Posting from the Narita express. Can't believe this is finally happening! $8$c$"$M El5~ [heart] I'll be back.

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[location info]

I have been packing and cleaning all night. Let myself lie down for one hour though. Happy to say I have time to do something important to me...visit one last time the shrine I used to jog to. So much has turned out well for me - I wanted to say thank you. I will offer a pachinko ball my dad gave me a while ago that I treasure.

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August 20, 2003

Overall update

Most important thing first: If you have been reading the comments from the kitty postings, I think we can all say that TuTu, the luckiest kitten around, has found a very loving home. Gosh, I still can't get over how perfectly this all worked out...except for the 48 hours while I was a nervous wreck wondering if I could hide the kitten with one of my cats and sneak her on the plane.

Second: I am leaving tomorrow. I continue to be a nervous wreck cuz my apt. is amazingly still full of stuff. Don't know where it all came from. Anyway, I'm off. Been waiting a very long time for this and can say with every cell of my body that this is the right thing to do. It's seems a dream that Dav and I will actually be together like a normal couple. No more relying on email and typing so much my thumb got numb.

Third: Tokyo Tidbits will continue! Details are yet to be worked out, but it sounds like several fabulous and insightful women living in Tokyo will collaborate on something using Tokyo Tidbits. Maybe guest bloggers will join too. So it'll keep a Tokyo/Woman perspective. I plan to continue my yapping in a linked but seperate blog. It'll take some time to get this all organized since Dav and I will be electronically unplugged until early September (yep, we're very much looking forward to a blissful week in the Nevada desert with Burning Man folk).

So it'll be quiet for a bit, but I promise to get back to you...let's say early September-ish...since I gotta settle in too and think how I wanna do all this.

Anyway, this has been a blast. Really. Had no idea and I just rode an amazing wave, eh? Something to tell my grandkids when they think I'm too ancient and
uncool. I do want to say that all this would have very little meaning without you, the reader, and your quirky, inspirational, and warm comments.

Thank you!


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August 17, 2003

Meant to be

A wonderful connection made...Tracy, who saw my posting, has adopted the kitten!u* I can't express how happy I am. I know Tracy will provide the best home; a perfect match, a meant to be situation. I am relieved :-) to say the least.Thank you to everyone who spread the word and helped me.(Eddie, I couldn't get your phone#.I hope you see this Mon. morning) Now I must get back to the moving business...4 more days!

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August 16, 2003

deep blue eyes

This kitten has gorgeous eyes and looks right at me with such curiousity. Cute pink nose too. Already moving around, peering out of the box. I think she is a girl but hard to tell. OK, I think we're all settled.Time for bed for moi. So tomorrow please ask around.Thank you!

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I was walking with Stephen,my brother in law, and we heard a scared meow from some bushes. Quite desperate. We could not ignore it and searched. I had him go buy tuna to coax this one out. However we found not a kitty but a baby kitty...frightened and hiding under the bush (smart after all this rain). I just could not walk away... although I've never done this before. So here I am at home now with the tiny fellow and I am moving in 6 days. Not to mention my cats who are quite curious and are staring @ me. I would like to ask ALL of you to help me find a home for this beautiful white and blue eyed kitten. I will post more pics once I get him/her outta my shirt. Please!

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August 15, 2003

farewell party

I really don't and can't say good-bye. I've moved around a lot and have managed to keep many long-distance friendships so I just don't consider moving away as any reason to change things. But the people I work with at the Ministry of Finance organized an awfully nice farewell dinner for me and invited the women from my office to join. I can't express well how much I've appreciated working with dedicated and good people. They have really inspired me and don't even realize how much they helped me through confusing times. I've gained great respect for the Japanese Ministry of Finance.

And it's not just their work. They're also super friendly and funny too! We had a great time last night (I didn't want to sit there typing in my phone while at the party so I'm posting today). After a few drinks, we really began swapping stories in earnest.

Here's a cute one: a MoF guy recently went to Washington and visited our headquarters. For lunch, he was taken on a tour of the sakura cherry blossom trees. The woman he was with kept talking about the problem with beavers and how they were gnawing away at the trees. Well, this MoF guy, who speaks excellent English, was not quite following the conversation for some reason and became quite confused because he did understand 'beaver'...not the animal definition but the alternative meaning, which is used in Japan too. We all had a good laugh imagining him trying to figure out why this woman was yapping about beavers and sakura.

Anyway, I received beautiful flowers which I appreciate much since my apartment is getting empty and ugly.

Thank you to all!
本当にお世話になりました。いろいろ助けて頂いて、心から感謝しています。これからもどうぞお元気でがんばって下さい。サン フランシスコへ来られたら是非連絡下さるようお願いします!

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August 14, 2003

short is good!

It was the rainy season. Then we had 2 seconds of summer (which was more than enough for my mom and I last Sat.), and now it seems we are already in typhoon season cuz it's a mess outside.(I don't watch weather on tv so I guess on my own...which actually isn't smart with Tokyo finiky weather.) Anyway, I just faced a sidewalk that was on its way to becoming a river and was thankful for once that I am short cuz I got platform shoes on and can wade through the mini river without wetting my toes. Yeah!

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August 13, 2003

proof of a true neighborhood bar

So my friends arrived and we were hanging out. Then one of the upstairs residents, who just got back from Niigata, dropped off an omiyage gift: a kabocha and a goya. Then a different guy came running down cuz his wife was in labor and they were heading for the hospital...and according to Kyoko, a natural place that will let you eat the placenta if yno want. I have never heard of that but apparently it is VERY good for the woman, health-wise.Makes sense. Congrats!

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a shop sign

I snapped this a while ago and forgot to post it with all going on."Killer Studio - Active Violence Shop." Didn't go in. Anyone know what thdy're up to?

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[location info]

I am supposed to meet my 2 fabulous friends Yuki and Kyoko at beloved neighborhood bar where I met them (Kyoko is the owner) but I must be early cuz no one is here.I will miss them and this place where many interesting conversations took place. Lots of discussions about relationships,occasional current event debates, and much joking around. lt's a funky place. Upstairs are apts. that if you rent, you basically get to build the interior. Always wood and tools lying around.Kinda artsy.hmmm...still no one here.Wish I had keys; I would then mix me a drink and get comfortable.:-)

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August 10, 2003


Having dinner at my parent's with their old friends, the Suetsugus. I took the opportunity to lug over a suitcase of all my spices and sauces that are leftover and I won't use before moving. Before dinner, Koko (Mrs. Suetsugu) did Kamishibai for us...old traditional story-telling. Apparently there are translated versions being sold in the U.S. and becoming popular...

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August 09, 2003

Belinda and James invited us for dinner

I work with Belinda and she invited several gals from the office to enjoy James'(Belinda's hubby) awesome cooking and enjoy being together since I am leaving soon. 12 days! I feel grateful for having met such great REAL people.I will miss them.But we will keep in touch.[heart]

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my brother in law

Went to dinner with my fabulous brother in law Stephen. We both love good food and wine. The kinda Friday I needed. It just amazes me how similar we are... I mean we did share a crib...yes, my brother married his soulmate whom he "met" in nursery school in NY. Our families were friends, lost touch, and they met by chance in Tokyo. Only after a few dates did they realize the connection though. Talk about fate, eh? Stephen and I too feel like long lost pals. Very cool.After dinner, we came across a family of stray cats. I had to control myself not to scoop them up and take them home...actually, someone came by to feed them so others are looking out for them.So cute.

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August 07, 2003

ode to noses

It's hot and muggy and I can't sleep.Just playing with my phone...Maybe I'll be embarrassed tomorrow but ahhh well...

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August 04, 2003

shibuya guardian angels

This is a rather new organization...a youth staffed group to keep an eye on troublemakers.They patrol the streets in groups and mean business; in addition to their uniform with berets, they have walkie-talkies . Imagine trying to keep order in Shibuya! place of choice to bend any rules. But they get my vote in using teenage peers instead of forcing a rumble with official police. Kudos from me to them. がんばって。お疲れ様です。

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August 03, 2003

お祭り omatsuri 2

[location info]

EZ Movie file (.amc)

(Install Player)

More images.Now I am following my parents as they hunt for a local public bath in this Koto-ku neighborhood...and now a little old lady is guiding us to one. After a soak, we'll have dinner.

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お祭り omatsuri!

EZ Movie file (.amc)

(Install Player)

Festival of carrying a "portable" shrine through the streets. 80 community members carry it while a crowd cheers on. Wonderful feeling of tradition and sharing. I will miss this sort of celebration...all generations, sweating bodies, water thrown all over, loud chanting to keep the rhythm.

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August 02, 2003

Badass van

We passed this van today. It had fully shaded windows and a skull logo on the side. Exuded a don't mess with me attitude. I still think it's rather cute!

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Beginning the move

Today my mom drove over in a rented mini (super mini) van to load up stuff I've borrowed from her (stove, bicycle, dishes), and my Japanese antique tansu from the Meiji era that I treasure. My aunt graciously said I could store it at her house since sending it to the U.S. would be outrageously expensive. She made lunch for my mom and I while we were at her place in Totsuka; cold somen noodles with tempura. I'm glad the rainy season is finally over, but it is so freaking hot and humid. My mom and I are dying...must have big bowl of shaved ice later.

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