a The Transit Lounge: December 2004

Back in the Day: I had a quarter life crisis, headed to Osaka, Japan for the unknown–only to discover that a passport plane ride are not necessarily a ticket to escape. Some Years Later: Settled back in Oz, the man of my dreams ended up in Tokyo for work–which is how a passport and plane ride showed me home is where the heart is. And Now: Well as luck would have it, we are about to embark on Japan Mark 3, with a baby in tow and another on the way...

Friday, December 17

Decisions Decisions

The time has come for me to make a decision.

Well I don't really have to make a decision if you get technical about it. More like it, I have to accept a decision that was never really mine to make anyway.

When April 2005 rolls around (and it is going to be here before we know it), I am 99% sure I won't be in Japan any longer. And it is killing me. I have come to accept that I cannot extend my visa nor get sponsorship beyond this time, but I haven't yet been able to accept that this means I will not be living, working, sleeping, breathing in Japan.

The only thing that will save me from becoming an illegal alien is a miracle - either that or me meeting and marrying the man of my dreams, who would have to be Japanese, within the next 3 or so months, so that I can get s spousal visa. With my current strike rate on dating in Japan, I am hedging all hope on the miracle - I could probably conceive immaculately before meeting date/marriage/sex worthy material here in Japan (gaijin or local!).

So really the "only" decision I have to make is what I will do after Japan - and when I get down to it, perhaps this is what is making me so scared about leaving here begin with. Sure, I also don't want to exit this country because of reasons like I will downright miss this place, the people, the lifestyle etc etc etc...but also leaving here means making a decision about my immediate future, and also how this will lead onto my longterm plans ('What longterm plans?' my mind is asking).

While I am still in Japan, I have an excuse for not "getting on" with my life. I have no expectations on me here, I have no-one to live up to, I have no responsibilities. The idea of simply moving to another country, other than Oz, is appealing, as it means I can still continue on in a similar carefree fashion - and to me it is like I am buyinjg more time in order not to think about this until much further down the track (oh yes, I am very good at putting important decisions off...).

Moving home means I have to make a decision on these matters. My problem at the moment is, I canj't decide if I am ready to do that or not.

Monday, December 6

English No Japanese Girl Can Do Without

Sunday mornings always prove to be rather interesting in the CLT Household, and yesterday was no exception (well actually it was, all of us had had early Saturday nights, and gotten plenty of sleep).

That aside, last night as Troy and I were rounding up the herd to go get ourselves a Howie sandwich, I happened to find a screwed up piece of paper with an English lesson written by Cliff.

It included such important phrases as "I gotta take a piss", "Are you serious?", "You want me to do what?", "That`s how I like it" and the pearler "Shut up - you talk too much."

Now maybe you can understand why English teachers are ridiculously overpaid here.

Lesson anyone?

The Simple Life

Living with 2 guys is an incredible learning experience for me. More to the point, living with Cliff and Troy is a learning curve that grows exponentially with every passing minute.

I’m not talking about making discoveries about the ways boys live along with their typical blokey habits like leaving the toilet seat up (this isn’t a problem, since they both sit down anyway...um yeah okay, moving right along...). I am talking about the amazing opportunity I have been granted in being able to gain an extremely useful and interesting insight into the way men think, act and react when it comes to the opposite sex.

In the past month, I have learned more about the way males interact with us innocent – and to be fair often not-so-innocent – females, than I have in the past decade of hanging out with them (of which 3 years of this time included attending a boys high school).

Is it beginning to dawn on me that men aren’t the complicated creatures we always make them out to be. I am going to go even further and suggest that although girlies may be the fairer sex, we are also the more complex and frustrating sex. While women are certainly from Venus, I suspect men are from a place more closer to home than we would care to initially admit.

I am now seeing that generally speaking, with a man what you see is what you get. He says what he means and means what he says. No hidden extras, no veiled meanings for us to figure out. In simple terms, men are just that – Simple beings! After witnessing Cliff’s Sunday morning English lesson to Waka (see “English No Japanese Girl Can Do Without”), not only am I confident that this is fact, I am also almost certain that guys just do not have the mental capacity to be as multifacted as we always assume they are!

Everyday I am now privy to displays normally hidden from women. I am with these guys when they are receiving hysterical phone calls from women, on the town chasing skirt, or at the bar passing comment on whatever is going on and whoever happens to be around.

So next time your man says “I’m too drunk to talk, I can’t deal with this now”, believe him. He really is semi-comatose, and in no state to handle anything but the toilet bowl. There really is no reading between the lines required, just hope he doesn’t drown in his own vomit.

I take pride in my ability to dole out sound advice to my male mates on any female subject matter from doing away with the old and bringing in the new, to responding to psycho and freaky messages to just how to plain treat a woman decently. Now I am finally gaining the same kind of education in return from 2 (mostly) level headed men, and I am very relieved to receive advice that isn’t always along the lines of “Just shag him.” About time too.

Mind you, this need only apply to men you are not romantically involved with in any way, shape or form – in those cases, they may as well be talking from Uranus.

Friday, December 3

Have I Been Here Too Long?

1. I see no problems with eating rice 3 times a day - just on its own.
2. I bow when I am speaking on the phone
3. When I want ice coffee, I simply add ice cubes.
4. Whiskey and coke? As if! Whiskey and water is just fine. Just be light on the whiskey though.
5. Im buying Hello Kitty pez - there's 4 different dispensers to collect!
6. My shopping list includes Miffy toilet paper - a steal at only 400 yen. for 12 rolls
7. Louis Vuitton - what a great Japanese designer! Issey Miyake, Akira Isogawa? - never heard of 'em.
8. What...you want a yes/no answer? Hehe, I'll just keep avoiding the question, and u draw your own conclusions.
9. When I go to karaoke, my first song is always a toss up between the Titanic Theme song and Elton John's Your Song. A decision I wouldnt wish on anyone.
10. Whenever I go the aquarium, I get hungry.
11. I speak English with an American accent.
12. I can't stop staring at foreigners.
13. Yes that's right, Rizzie....R-I-Z-Z-I-E.