Friday, November 13, 2009

Moving Day... er Week

It's Friday - As of Monday, we are renters. We love the house, the neighborhood and the country. It's an amazing place and we are thrilled to be here. We aren't fully settled yet, and I'm not even seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, but it's okay. We have plenty of time.
We got up at 6:00 this morning. You know that I AM NOT A MORNING PERSON, but we only have one car and I had an appointment today. I'm taking a 3 day weekend, I've earned it. Here's the story...
Monday - We signed the contract so we needed yen, lots of it, in cash, enough for the rent, deposit, owner's fee (!?), agent's fee, 5% tax on the agents fee and renter's insurance and extra for some things we need for the house. We will pay our rent in cash. The Base Housing Office arranged for appliances, had gas and electricity turned on, supplied the paperwork for registering our car, and gave us information on how to sort our trash.

The view from the living room to the kitchen. You recognize our furniture.

We registered our car when we bought it, but must register it for this house. They actually send someone out to measure your car and your parking space. We have 3 spaces (I'm bragging).

I read the rental agreement, which says that we can't put very heavy furniture in (i.e. waterbeds), or put nails in the walls to hang art work or wear shoes in the house. I doubt we'll get any of the deposit back. This place would go for about 30% less to a Japanese renter, but a government inspector (US) approves the fees, so whatta ya gonna do? We actually got the owner down $300 on the rent.

Then it was cable, internet, and phone at the house. The appoint ment was set up for 3:30 and we made it with nano seconds to spare. Our agent put Allan's name on our signpost in Katakana. She came out to label all of the AC and gas heater controls, but missed the oven, so I won't be baking anytime soon. Just as well, the temperature is Celsius. F=5/9C-32? or it it 9/5F+32? I'll check the internet.

This handy item is a security camera. I can see you but you can't see me.
When we finished, it was back to base to meet up with our friend Gene who brought rugs and a TV to the house. Gene and Raeni Russell have seven children, so they have the largest personal vehicle on the base.
Allan piled suitcases in the car and went back to drop them off. Our furniture comes tomorrow, and we'll be out of the lodge after 53 days.
Tuesday - I met a neighbor, who was out directing traffic for kids on their way to school. He introduced himself (in English) as Rico and I said 'yoroshuka onegai shamas' (nice to meet you). Are you amazed?

The movers got our stuff inside in record time. Six guys unloaded, hauled stuff in and offered to unpack. At first I declined, because I didn't know where to put everything. Then they talked me into letting them do it. What could I say? When they left, there were piles everywhere.
The cable and internet installers arrived early, as did the delivery of my washer, dryer and fridge (which was a disappointingly small). Allan went over to the property office to ask for a better one, and got it (rank has it's privilege).
Wednesday - Allan's off for Veteran's Day. We did our best to hack through the piles of clothes, dishes, pictures all that stuff you don't think about having until you see it in a pile. We spent a few hours out shopping for things we needed and when we got home it was trouble in paradise. The culprit is trash disposal. Example: I emptied a salad dressing bottle and had to cut off the plastic seal that attaches the lid, then soak off the label, throw the lid and seal in one bin, label in another and glass in yet another. Allan spent about 2 hours setting up our four cans and deciphering the instruction book of how to separate, what kind of bag is acceptable, and what day each of the 5 types is collected. If it's not right, they leave it with a note telling you how you screwed up and better luck next time.

We got the TV at the exchange, and bought a stand for it in town, but Allan hasn't had time to put it together yet. Did I mention he's going surfing at 5 AM tomorrow? Yes, he does stay busy.

I had a small bowl with dishsoap and a few drops of bleach in the sink. Allan's camera was sitting on the kitchen passthrough counter. We have an enormous sink, and the camera fell into that little bowl. Thankfully, the Schreiber boys gave us a camera as a going away gift. It'll come in handy now.

I mowed through some of the mess before we had our first visitors, who brought a bottle of plum wine (my favorite). We hadn't bought food yet, but our candy dishes were filled. With no dinner in the house, we went out for okonomi yaki. I don't know why, but we like these 'cook it yourself ' dishes. Novelty perhaps.

Thursday - Allan took the car. It didn't matter - I wasn't goin' nowhere! I had appointments for phone installation and refrigerator exchange. This one is so much better. It's Japanese, as is the washer & dryer. I don't know why they bother with dryers, it took 2 hours to dry my first load. I'll be drying one load of laundry each day.

This was cleanup day and I did for about 10 hours. Allan had a bowling tournament after work and arrived home at around 8:30 to find me sprawled on a chair gasping for air. My back and arm were throbbing, which meant I didn't sleep well. That brings us to getting up at 6 AM today.

We were out all day, and we decided to try a neighborhood restaurant called 'Table 9'. Sounds like it should have an English menu, right? Nope. But we took our chances and were not disappointed. We each chose something from the pasta list. Mine was chicken (very little) & cream sauce (which was just cream). It had a dry green topping which I thought might be basil, but this is Japan - it was seaweed, pretty good too.

Tomorrow while Allan is surfing, I might use the time to experiment with the buses. I'm good with the train, so if I get the right bus to the train station, I can get anywhere.

No comments:

Post a Comment