Hello?  Is anyone out there still?  I’ve been neglecting this blog in favor of massive cramming for the JLPT for quite a while now.  Well it all went down last Sunday, finally, and let’s just say I’d better have fucking passed.

So now I’m trying to remember where you and I left off.  I have to admit, though, my head feels pretty fuzzy.  It’s odd not to have that rigorous sense of purpose anymore.  I feel like I’ve been thrown into a void of sorts.

That which was crammed is now empty.  And I’m just left here trying to remember the plot.  The point.  The voice.  I am trying to recall my own voice.  Dude, am I ok?

Yes, probably.  If only because I have a new crisis to attack now: Christmas!!

Christmas: The Horror Documentary, in which I fly across the world twice on my own with two lovely neurodivergent young boys, neither of whom believes in listening, sitting down, staying the fuck still while their passports are examined, or acting in accordance with any other safety rule or social expectation, really.

Maybe in the age of normal travel this might have felt almost surmountable.  But now, of course, it involves multiple airport checkpoints, quarantines, and several rounds of tests going in either direction.  (My kids also don’t believe in PCR testing, in airports or otherwise, about which they can be exceedingly vocal.  Usually in public.)  And then, when the trip is all over and done, we all get to hang out together at home for 2 weeks of strict isolation.  And if you’ve met my children, well, this arrangement presents its own set of issues, to say the very least.

So why the hell am I attempting this at all?  Any sane person might ask.  For this is a very good question.  I would ask it too.  And why would I risk getting stuck outside of Japan again when I know first hand the cruelty of Japanese border controls, should the government change its mind about letting tax paying residents reenter the country?

I don’t know.  I guess I just miss my mom.  Or more truthfully, I cannot bear to disappoint my family again by canceling yet another trip due to COVID.  So.

Am I crazy?  Maybe.  Probably.  Yes.  But here goes anyway.

It all starts with the first round of PCR testing next Tuesday, before our departure on Wednesday morning.  So stay tuned, friends, for if nothing else we will have quite a few stories to share over the next month, horror or otherwise.

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