I really need to do something interesting to breathe some life back into this blog, especially since I’m on vacation. Alas, I’m busy doing everyday stuff that is deeply satisfying to me but not very interesting to write about. It’s supposed to rain for the next week, but I’m determined to take a drive up the Noto Peninsula as soon as the weather clears. Stunning pictures will surely follow. So when in doubt and your blog is collecting dust, why not dump a bunch of pictures of your lovely spawn? At least your mother will be happy.
We took a trip to the beach yesterday to let Ray frolic amongst the sand and dog carcasses. Winter is surely caput here but it’s still deceivingly chilly out, especially with a good wind kicked up.
When we got home, Chieko promptly lopped off the majority of Ray’s lovely locks. For once, he didn’t flip out and cry like a baby the entire time. It could be that a trash bag is less smothering than the usual large, wire-framed hair-catching contraption that Chieko usually drapes over Ray during hair cuts (which, at a whopping 100 yen, didn’t last very long).
But the real story in my life is that last week, after pestering my wife for several weeks, I finally took delivery of my home gym: power rack, bench, 100 kg of barbell plates and 60 kg of dumbell plates.
Having this setup in my our tatami room, I have increased the intensity and frequency of my workouts, so we’ll see what kind of effect it all has on my bodice. The down side is that I’ve also been slipping back into my bottle-or-so-of-wine a night rut that I inevitably revert to during vacations. Need to ratchet it up the will power in that regard, just as soon as my current stash is gone.
Today I picked up my renewed work visa, and at the same time got an application for permanent residency. After that, since we had time, Chieko and I went by work and then the city hall to get the documents that need to be submitted with my application (a form from work stating that I am employed for eternity, and papers from the city hall showing that I pay all my taxes and live where I claim to live). Chieko also needs to get a form from her hometown that proves she is really Japanese and that we are married.
I was surprised that applying for permanent residency was so easy. When I looked into applying for a spousal visa they wanted all sorts of forms and pictures that prove we have known each other for an acceptably long amount of time — a bunch of stuff that seemed like a pain in the butt to track down. It’s really easy to get hitched in Japan though, and I suppose a lot of people try to take advantage of that to get a visa. The paperwork needed for permanent residency is much more straight forward and harder to fudge. If you meet the requirements, it seems like a pretty smooth process though.
Other exciting stuff? Hold on tight for this! Washed our car over the weekend for the first time since the fall! Opened a new bank account today, and get this….closed a different bank account! After that we ate at Subway, and it sucked! (Really, pass on Japanese Subway if you have any expectations.) You want more? At the end of the month I’m reading English story books to little kids at the library! But in all seriousness, it was good to get out and make a dent in a long list of small things that I have been wanting/needing to do…things add up.
Finally, if your sense of humor is in the gutter like mine and you have an hour to kill, please listen to the Comedy Bang Bang podcast, especially the recent episode titled ‘Climbing the Ladder.’
OK, pictures of Noto coming soonish. Hope all is well.