The last few days I’ve been feeling like a Ren & Stimpy character. Mostly because my left eye keeps twitching and I can’t bear to even look at people when I feel it happening. I know my body well enough to know that this is just one of the ways stress presents itself through me. Every time we move or something stressful happens my eye starts twitching and now I just have to wait for the move to be over. I guess I could start sporting an eye patch. It wouldn’t be the first time.
Considering other moves when you are prepping the house for sale, looking for a new home, and dealing with a myriad of other issues, this re-relocation back to the States seems almost effortless. In fact, it kind of is. We interviewed and selected a moving company and set a date: December 20th 2012. They will arrive a few days beforehand to carefully package all our belongings. We will fly into Columbia, South Carolina because of the holidays. My sister Mary & The Girlies, and Bess are all planning to meet at my parent’s home. Cliff & I are having our floors refinished before we move back in. School for Chase will start January 7th so we have a little time.
Thirty-Six more days in Tokyo. Each day my mind seems to flip a coin. Heads: What I will miss. Tails: How excited I am to be going back. Today, it’s Heads. It’s easy to wax on about the incredible customer service and safety. But for me, it’s the lifestyle. Today I will have lunch with some girlfriends at a terrific local sushi place where they know us. We will play tennis at Arisugawa park. Afterwards, I will bike to the local Japanese farmer stall to buy fresh vegetables for dinner. I will miss the exhiliration I feel every morning as I speed down the hill on my bike listening to my music. The ease of getting around on my bike yelling “Ohayoooooo!” to strangers walking to work or tidying up their patch of asphalt. These are things I get to do every day. Things that have become a part of me.
Saturday night, Cliff and I were invited to go out with our friends Nicki and Stefan to a Jazz club to listen to one of their friends singing. The bar was called Recovery (so clever). For a cover of 10,000 yen, you got small plates of food and “nomihoodai” (all you can drink beer and wine!). I would be generous to estimate the number of chairs at 15. Nicki’s friend and her accompanist were positioned in a corner of the club at the very end of our long countertop.
When she was singing, everyone was very quiet and respectful of their perfomance. Imagine my surprise when she starts and I hear a beautifully soulful, raspy voice singing bossa nova! In Spanish! Stunning. And you know how every man looks better when you see he can play an instrument? Nicki and I were quite drunk at this point and found ourselves reminiscing about “that high school boyfriend” you knew your parents would hate who looked just like the guitarist. How soon can I take you home?
Cliff and Stefan seemed to enjoy making fun of us, but the good thing about alcohol is… it’s just good. They finished singing around 11:30pm and by midnight, Cliff was giving me the “roll out” sign. Thank God Alexandra wasn’t there, because she would have totally shamed me into staying out later and going somewhere to karaoke until at least 4am.
This is a quintessential Japanese adult night out. You go to some club with 10-15 chairs. You wonder, “how does this place stay afloat?” but only for a little while, because it isn’t your bar. You sit with friends eating good food, drinking and listen to a couple people who are doing something you know they love. Happy to just express and share their art with anyone who will listen.
Going out in Atlanta: Dinner & A Movie.
Until next time…