The big typhoon that was supposed to hit Kyoto last Monday night did – just like the last one a week before – bypass the city, thank goodness. Last Sunday, our landlady came to prepare the house: opening all the windows just a little bit, so there would not be too much pressure on any side (apparently, if there is, the whole house could blow out); removing anything from the outside that could be blown around and thus cause damage; tying unremovable things down; securing the bicycles by laying them down… In the end, there was some rain and some heavy gusts of wind, but not in the least as serious as everybody had feared. Towns on the East coast have not been quite that lucky I have heard…

So, our house is still standing, and thanks to the recent repairs on the roof there was no leakage. Or, at least, not in the expected spots… About half a year ago, I told the landlady about leakage on the ground floor: During heavy rain, the drainage on the back of the house cannot quite handle the amount of water, and the overflow came through the back door into the house, into the narrow pathway between the kitchen and the entrance area which is level with the outside (the kitchen itself and the rest of the house are elevated above ground by maybe 40 cm).

construction sign

Then, the problem was fixed, chiefly by installing a new back door with a higher threshold and new floorboards in the pathway inside. I watched as it was done, and already then I was suspicious of the threshold, which is nothing more than a piece of wood laid down and covered with plaster. It looks solid, but it certainly is not!

The proof for this came Monday night: As the drainage problem outside has not really been addressed, the overflow from the heavy rain slowly leaked through the threshold and even seeped up through the floorboards. I have informed our landlady about this – I wonder what is going to happen this time. The solution would be rather simple, but I wonder if I should dare suggest it…

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