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Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."

We've both gained weight in the past couple of years, to a bordering-on-unhealthly level. So, to shrink our girths while also satisfying our curiosity, we've been talking walks every day. One day we'll take this fork, the next day that one, etc.

Yesterday we weren't long into our walk before we saw a couple of crows pecking at garbage. "Watch out," I said. "The crows here are mean, and really smart." Then I mumbled, "I hope they don't swoop and peck at us."

Photobucket
Photo from here.


As we approached, one crow flew away to some nearby trees. The second crow flew up to the telephone wires directly above the garbage and cawed repeatedly. I was nervous, so stepped off the tiny sidewalk we were on and walked around the area the crow was perched over. Dusty told me later that since it got out of the way, he figured it wasn't going to bother us... so he kept walking on the sidewalk.

Big mistake.

Just as he passed under the crow—PLOP!—he got pooped on. A huge white splatter hit him on the front of his shoulder and went down his shirt and pants.

Needless to say, we cut the walk short. I felt bad for him, but both of us couldn't help but laugh between our, "Man, that's so sick!" comments.

Heh, now that I think about it, I can guess what that crow was cawing to the other one: "Hey, dude, watch this! Bet he'll walk right under me. Just watch!"

I think it's safe to say Dusty will "nevermore" walk under birds. ;)
I'm having fun making guesses about who lived in our apartment before us.

We've moved into a furnished apartment, and it's clear things have been added or taken away by each person/family that lived here in the past roughly 10 years this apartment building has been standing. But, of course, the most clues have been left behind by the tenant before us.

They definitely had a kid. We keep finding crayons in the most random places, and we're told one wall had to be repainted before we moved in because of doodles on it. Several drawers in various cabinets and desks also have crayon scribblings. And I found some kindergarten-ish level flash cards under some furniture when I tried to move it.

I think they may have been from Spain or South America. I found a note written in Spanish, and we found a CD that played familiar praise/worship songs, but sung in Spanish. (Actually, Dusty and I debated whether it was Spanish or Italian for a while, but I think he's right and it's probably Spanish.)

They did not particularly care for cooking. There are only a few utensils, and most are in bad shape. True, they could have taken the utensils they like with them, but the ones left behind were not cared for. A real cook, someone who loves food and the process of preparing it, wouldn't leave behind half melted plastic spatulas and non-stick frying pans that are decomposing to a very unhealthy level. ;) Their choice of dishes to add to the set already here in the apartment are also a little odd (some of which we can't even figure out the purpose of). On the other hand, there are no cereal bowls—or chopsticks (in Japan!).

Every day I discover something new. It's like a game. :)
In January of this year, both my husband (Dusty) and I (April) were feeling a little dissatisfied with our jobs. They were both good jobs that were in our respective fields of study, and we liked the people we worked with, but we both felt like this wasn't it. This wasn't what we were made to do.

Both Dusty and I have been wanting to live in Japan for a while, but nothing we had pursued had worked out. Even when we weren't actively seeking new employment we'd poke around on various Web sites to see if there were any available leads. Usually, there were none.

Backing up a bit: I had grown up as a missionary kid (MK) in Tokyo, Japan. When I met Dusty in college in the US, he already had a love of the Japanese culture and wanted to live there someday. In 2005, when Dusty and I were still dating, we both visited Japan together and I showed him my old stomping grounds, including Christian Academy in Japan (CAJ), where I had spent most of my schooling years. One of the IT guys even let him help out a bit in the computer department while I was helping my aunt (the school's librarian) in the library.

So, when I was on my lunch break one day this past winter, I impulsively decided to see if my alma mater was offering any openings either of us were qualified for. Though none of the other times I had looked in the past several years had held any promise, this time there was a position that suited Dusty.

"Dusty!" I said in an e-mail to him. "You need to check this out! Maybe you could work at CAJ. Wouldn't that be neat?"

About an hour later I got an e-mail back: "Maybe. I'll look at it later."

Talk about anticlimactic.

The rest of the month I kept nagging him to look into it, and to possibly fill out an application. Naturally being a creature who is a bit resistant to change (especially compared to my usual jump-first-think-later tendencies), he was hesitant. Eventually he filled out an application, but looking back I think he did it more to get me to shut up than anything else. ;) He's told me since that he honestly didn't expect them to be interested in him (then again, he always has been a bit of an Eeyore).

But wouldn't you know it? They were interested, and it wasn't long before they set up a Skype interview and then offered him the job. Still reeling, we quickly updated our passports and got our visas, as well as purged and donated/sold most of our belongings. It was all very rushed and by the end we were both very stressed out!

However, by God's grace, it worked. Though it was a very bumpy process, we're now sitting in our new living room, in a small apartment overlooking a little field, some houses, and a tangle of telephone wires.

Some would say this view is not so great, but to me, it's simply beautiful.

JapanApartment
Photo by me.


Dusty starts his new job in about two weeks, and is signed on for a year. After that, only God knows what will happen. Will that be the end and then we'll move back to the US? Will we stay in Japan for another year? Five years? For life?

Well, I guess you'll have to keep reading this blog to find out. ;)

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