Surreal…

We’ve been in Chattanooga for Saturday and part of Sunday.  It was good timing that my nephew’s birthday party was this weekend because it provided a good opportunity to see a lot of our friends.  At the same time, it’s been really strange that this will likely be the last time I see them for up to a year or so.  It’s been even stranger to think the same thing with my parents and parents-in-law!  I’ll drop by my parents’ house before we leave town for Nashville… and that’ll be that I guess.

An interesting development will come in a month or so when my dad’s company decides if they’ll start to fly him over to India / China on a regular basis.  If they do, it’ll likely be that he can ‘drop off’ in Tokyo for his layover day.  It’s so strange to consider moving to the other side of the world and then suddenly have your family have the opportunity to visit so ‘easily’.  We’ve talked with some other friends about coming for visits which will perhaps stave off some homesickness as well as provide them with the opportunity to see the big city of Tokyo!

My mental list of things to do has started to go into overdrive.  We still haven’t sorted out details of my visa, etc. so I’m also playing against the odds that I won’t be leaving on Friday last I expected.  It’s not likely, but it’s still within the realm of possibility.  I still can’t wrap my head around the idea that in one week from today I’ll be in Tokyo, starting to build what will be my life for a while.

I’ve been inconsistent with my Japanese language learning, which is unfortunate – I really wanted to get a little further than I had been last November.  One of my personal hang ups was just how little I understood / could communicate.  I also didn’t get much time to train my ear to English in a Japanese accent, but there isn’t much I can do about that here.

Olivia seems to be doing pretty well with the handful of words we’ve taught her.  Polite words like ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ are our focus.

In non-Japan related news about Olivia, she has gotten considerably more comfortable with bugs!  Yesterday, with April, Sydney and Ella, she allowed a ladybug-esque beetle to crawl on her arm!  Today, running around in Mimi & PapPaw’s driveway, she’s been investigating caterpillars.  This is a very significant change from even a month ago when she was terrified of every single bug-like thing she encountered.  I think there were some greats lessons and coaching at daycare over the past few weeks that have brought her to a good place.

So… the clock continues to count down and I’m less than 7 days from my flight.  There is plenty of work left to do, so I guess I should get back to it.

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