I rented The Simple Life the other day. Yeah, that horrid old television program featuring Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie (which I’ll be farked if I’m going to link to). I had grown weary of turning my extremely critical, judgmental gaze upon myself, and thought I’d give my poor battered self a break while turning it upon those who not only kinda deserve it, but wouldn’t be harmed by my mockery. (And I couldn’t find “19 Kids and Counting” here.)
So, while watching it with T (who definitely -didn’t- need that impression of American culture), we saw some kids eating Froot Loops. I didn’t think anything of it, while T was horrified by the color, proclaiming it to be “not food”. Really, he’s right. Those food dyes are illegal in Japan, and when I consider it and some of the other cereals I pined after as a kid, I’m kinda grossed out. But they’re so delicious, aren’t they? In kindergarten, we wrote our names in Froot Loops once. So badly did I want to eat that cereal that after we took them home (long after they’d become stale), I snuck-ate my name from the poster board it was on– glue, paper and all. I’d stashed the thing in my closet just to gorge on unbeknownst to my mom.
It’s not like we weren’t ever allowed that sort of crap. My parents had a beach house (yeah, I’m that white), and when in Delaware, my sister S and I were allowed to walk down to the little general store up the block and buy whatever we wanted for breakfast, as long as we brought Mom back a newspaper or two. The store didn’t have much, but it did have 12 packs of miniature sized junk-food cereals, and we almost always bought one and then divvied them all up, 6 and 6. Pity the fool who got the lame ones, like the token box of Cheerios or Corn Flakes.
I remember one morning I slept in, and S and my mom went to the store without me. I was pounced on by an excited S later that morning, as she squealed “IT’S A CHOCOLATE MORNING” (they’d bought chocolate muffins and Cocoa Krispies).
39 days left here (it’s night, so very nearly 38). Today I experienced my first “oh my god, WHERE is my home now?” freakout. In Houston my house is still physically standing, but my “home” has been ripped away. And Houston was only home because J was there, I think. In Houston there are so many things I will genuinely miss about Tokyo; I love living in a big city, especially one like Tokyo where I am liable to see something interesting daily. I’ll miss walking around, and not driving. I’ll miss a lot of people, although I am horrid at making plans with them… I’ll miss ready access to the Japanese language media -I- like (so… not anime, as a general rule).
I read this article by chance the other day, and I thought …. oh no, that hits a little too close to home… I ended up shacking up with T because I was and am terrified of being alone. I have to deal with that before -I-, like the author’s ex, make a terrible mistake.
And J is the king of boundary setting when it comes to people (or perhaps, in the past, of cutting people off), otherwise I fear we’d get into the same codependent dynamic. I would, but he won’t let me, is the concise way of putting it. He and I both agree that we should have divorced a while ago, but in my case, at least, I was more afraid of being alone than I was being in a dysfunctional relationship. He’s my family. I love him in the same way I love my birth-family… wherein you just sort of work with their faults and quirks and are reassured that they’ll always be there to support you (at least, if you/I let them).
An acquaintance once said that tattooing saved her life. I know what she means. I could easily become covered in them, but I think my research future in Japan will hold me back. When I have suffered emotional trauma in the past, I have cut or dyed my hair or pierced a body part. The hair is already short (though not dyed), and my metal allergy has worsened, so I am left with my love of tattoos. And lattes (nobody needed that last part, me).
Today is Tanabata in Japan. Two summers ago I went to the festivals, but today I was actually busy. I’m not supposed to exercise yet, after being in the hospital recently, but I did some simple yoga tonight, until boat pose proved to be a really, really bad idea, leading to searing full-body pain. Gotta keep my spirits up somehow, and I lament my weakening body, so I keep pushing at the exercise prohibition.
BTW: I am a reply delinquent right now, but I am getting back to friends who wrote to me, concerned. I promise.