Happy Thanks and Giving to you my Friends!

Happy Thanks and Giving to you my Friends!

I like to think that I am grateful almost everyday during the year, but – at this time especially so.  It is the beginning of the holiday season, and a time to reflect on all things – especially the things that please me so much.  Family, friends, good food, being here in Japan for this adventure is certainly a dream come true.  I am grateful for the opportunity to travel and the wellness to do so today, even with a trick knee.

It has been five years since I last visited Japan.

To recap thus far:  Akira and Marci met me after a long 10 hour flight however, thank you Michelle for the first class seating.  Delta did their best to over pamper and feed me all the way to Narita.  There was a very efficient couple that greeted me after landing and disembarking the airplane.  They plopped me into a wheel chair/cart and off we went, around hallways, up and down elevators and across the inner workings of the Airport.   We negotiated Immigration, Customs, Baggage and whew! out the sliding door to a waiting family.

This Airport is located on a peninsula in the Chiba prefecture, it is about two and a half hours away from Hachioji where Marci and Akira live. After a drive through downtown Tokyo, we pulled into Hachioji – my new home for this year.  My body clock was at 2:30 am Northwest time.  I was able to stay up for another hour and a half before falling into bed for a much needed rest.

So continues the process of switching my body clock around.  It seems to help if I eat light, rest and then of course – time takes time!  Marci made miso soup, rice and a salad for breakfast (8:00 am) their time.  After a visit and a look around the apartment, feeling very happy and satisfied, I was ready for a morning nap. (actual body time 5:00 pm)  Only rested for an hour of which was absolutely necessary, I’m feeling pretty good about this.  Went for a short walk to gain my bearings around Condo complex and walked slowly over to a convenience store and back.  I am blessed with a good sense of direction and memory if I’ve been down a street before. I recalled quite a bit from my last visit here so all felt pretty familiar to me.  Back for lunch and now a serious effort to stay awake the rest of the day. Started to unpack a few things.  Gave in and laid down for another hour before dinner. One has to experience jet lag to really understand. Thankfully, today – I was able to keep awake until 9:00 pm.  Good for me. Bed felt soooo good.

Next day,  still have flutters and a kind of hungry feeling in my stomach, off and on all day.  Marci has come down with an allergy attack affecting her eyes and sinuses.  She has called and cancelled classes for the day and we will walk to the doctor’s together.  She has a slight temperature.  Akira has gone to the University for classes and will check in with us later.  The doctor prescribed some medicine – we picked it up on the way back.  We also stopped by a much larger grocery store than yesterday. I think going to the grocery store is really a fun experience here.  Of course, the language, the difference in the dollars and coins and the promotional writings on packages is a challenge.  The fruit that is in season now is oranges (mikans), persimmons and Japanese pear apples.  Yum yum to all three items.  Just like in America, it is good to go with the “in season” fruit as it is less expensive.  I saw broccoli made in America at $1.48 lb. and in Japan $1.98 a lb. – both looked exactly the same.

After a nice lunch and a little rest the phone rang with the delivery of my three boxes from U.S.  By this time, I really could not remember what I packed months ago and sent through Yamato transportation. I was told we would have to wait ten to twenty days after my arrival in Japan – so several days was terrific. Later in the day we got busy together and made a big pot of vegetable soup.  Hopefully, this helps all of us – comfort broth plus nutrition.  It is amazing that the medicine Marci started this morning was already providing her some relief for her eyes.  Yippee!

Marci and Akira reorganized space in their closets and shelves before I arrived.  Now, I am beginning to fill up that space with my clothes, etc.  My room is looking more like I belong here.  I unpacked a few little critter (stuffed) animals for my bed.  Wonderful!  We hung some pictures, measured the window for a new curtain that we will pick out together.

Today is a beautiful day.  Mt Fuji is out – the air clear, temperature is 57 degrees.  Have a great Turkey Day!!


Sharon Smith was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest (USA) and owned a healthcare uniform business for many years. She also lived in Japan but presently resides in Michigan. She blogs about her experiences and observations touching on culture, lifestyle, and the people around her.

HI I'm Sharon from sharonswalkabout.com


  1. Marci on November 24, 2012 at 1:37 PM

    Nearly a week has passed since you arrived. It is such a pleasure to relive the week again through your eyes and experiences. We are so happy you took this leap of faith. Here’s to another week and many more to come!

  2. Mikaela on December 3, 2012 at 2:43 PM

    Reading this I can close my eyes and almost picture it! Glad you are settling in and already accomplishing goals! Hope you have a great week! Excited to see pictures of your room once it’s all decorated and you feel settled in.