The last few days have been a frenzy. I still can’t believe Chase and I will be on a plane (along with so many others) to head home for summer months. After Brian left, I was in crazy mode. Some of my craziness included:
- Saving Chase from Trade School
- End of School Activities
- Sayonara Parties & Lunches
- Baseball Mom Duty AGAIN
- Preparing for Camp Kieve
- Packing for Summer Leave (2 months)
Last Friday evening, Cliff and I attended our last sayonara party for Cliff’s golf friend Paddy and his wife Lien. They had been here for 4 years. However, at the last minute, it turned into a Sayonara-Lien-Party because, just like in Godfather III, his company managed to “pull him back in” for another few months. Husbands working in Japan while their wives and kids are in other cities and countries is actually very common.
At the party, we also saw Alexandra and Andrew. Alexandra wasted no time in dropping her news bomb that Andrew had decided to retire again, and they would be leaving for Bristol early July. “Leaving” like moving. In light of being very sad and disheartened that my new Seoul Sister was leaving me, we ordered a bottle of wine and made promises of annual reunions. Thank God they’re rich and can travel. Alexandra and her family will always be a part of my life. I feel lucky just to have met her and her beautiful family.
YOU GOTTA HAVE WA?!?!
Even though it is the beginning of rainy season, it never seems to rain when I have baseball duty. Recently, I finished a book called You Gotta Have Wa. An American insider’s look at the world of Japanese baseball. It really helped clarify a lot of the strange methods of little league baseball. Like:
- Pre-game/post-game workouts
- HOURS of practice in deplorable conditions
- The hierarchy and unexplainable position assignments (although this goes on in the States as well)
- The idolatry of baseball and its finest players
- The prejudice and perspective of Japanese towards “Gaijin” players
- Their admiration of players who “sacrifice” to the point of physical and emotional pain
When I received the latest schedule, I didn’t even bother looking at the mom duty column, because surely, pulling duty practically every week (with the exception of 3 weeks when I was in the US for mom’s funeral and hosting my dad’s visit) I’m thinking I would be given this weekend off. Nope. Ra-i-to San (this is how they write Wright in Katakana) Mom Duty. So even though it rained all day yesterday, I got the email Sunday morning saying “though the fields were very muddy, there were no deep pools of water, so practices and game was still on”. As I pulled myself together, instead of being resentful, I decided to think about the other moms who were going to be out on the fields all summer long pulling duty while I couldn’t. Sweating their asses off in their Japanese burkas trying not to let one UV Ray touch their porcelain skin in 100+ degree weather. I decided I would do my part to help the team Wa (team harmony) and serve my tea at practice… again.
GOING AWAY for SUMMER
I’ve always heard of people leaving for weeks and months at a time. I’ve never quite understood it. I am a creature of habit, so any time I’m away for more than 3 days, it feels like I’m losing control. I know Cliff doesn’t understand how just being in my home alone without having to run the wash or put away dishes on my couch wrapped in my Snuggie is the best vacation ever. So, despite my feelings about extended vacations, I am faced with packing for 2 months overseas. Cliff and I have a system, where I pull everything I’m taking for Chase and myself, and he packs it into a bag. He’s a professional. I’ve had silk dresses I didn’t even have to iron. I look at my piles of clothes, and I realize I’m taking a lot of workout clothes and old underwear. It’s my first time doing this, so I’m sure there are lessons to be learned. To complicate matters, Chase is going to Camp Kieve June 26th-July 21st and I need to pack that stuff too.
Initially, I was feeling kind of sad about leaving Tokyo. Ever since Alexandra and Andrew announced their plans to move, I have been feeling very sad. It doesn’t help that I haven’t had sex in over a week and when that happens, by Day 5 I’m a cranky bitch. There’s a side of me that eagerly awaits every day for my “fix” (especially when there’s a countdown to being apart for 2 months) and when it all comes to an anticlimactic ending, to be honest… I feel bewildered, angry, petulant. I also realize, the less sex I have, the less clothing I wear. The last couple of days, I’ve been walking around with my nipples practically hanging out.
Yesterday, we had sayonara lunch with Alexandra at Mosaique. This restaurant seems to be very popular amongst the Housewife-set. Maybe it’s because it is located between Chloe and Prada, I don’t know. Although at Monday’s lunch, I actually saw 4 men having lunch together.
The world of ex-pat living is full of hellos and good-byes. It experiences waves of people coming and going every Summer and Winter. I know Alex’s leaving is hard for me because I feet a deep connection to her. My mom’s dying makes time and friends seem so precious and precarious.
Until next time Alex…