My sweetie and I are both safely back in the Land of Wa (Japan) after our week and a half flurry through the Land of WA (Washington State). She was so excited to meet my family and be fully accepted by them. Before the trip, I said one fear was that she would want to move after visiting. She would laugh each time, but halfway through the trip she said, “I can see why you said that.” Now she is constantly talking about going back, but practically she won’t be able to visit for a long time. Perhaps I should be sending out resumes now…
Points that impressed her about Seattle and Western Washington were:
- Although there were big buildings and large houses and wide streets, there was serious greenery everywhere which gave a more naturaly feeling.
- Seattle is about the same size as Nagoya, but the traffic was always moving and people seemed very relaxed. Urgency is at least a few keys down on the scale.
- Many things she likes are available at Bellevue Square. (She quickly fell in love with Red Mango.)
- Everyday the air felt comfortable and clean.
- While many types of trees are the similar to Japan, the scale is completely different.
We were amazed by how many things came up to threaten the trip or our happiness, but remain convinced that God loves us as everything was laid low before us. Wednesday we checked in for our strange routing through YVR and NRT on our way to NGO and the agent neglected to check our bags all the way through. When we got to the gate the Vancouver flight was delayed, which might cause panic, but we went shopping for Godiva instead. Upon returning to the gate they asked if we were Hammond/Sakamoto – I guess we stand out – and they offered to send us directly to Narita because they were afraid for us. This gave us more time to relax in Seattle and Narita together, but didn’t get us home any sooner.
We stopped in Tsu to eat all manner of vegetables with her parents and give them many gifts and stories before driving back to Ise, where we got another big surprise: our genkan was all wet. A couple hours hence, someone will be tearing the ceiling out to find out where the water is coming from, but hopefully the landlord is in the mood to replace some flooring, wallpaper, and ceiling tiles. We’ve got buckets out, but I didn’t let this get in the way of sleeping enough hours to be jet lag free in a day.
Now that I’m back, I’ll be updating more frequently. Also, my joyful visit to the plastic surgeon is making me feel less Van Gogh-like and more creative: wait, is that contradictory?