Current State of Affairs

It’s my 5th day at my new house and I’m busy with all sorts of things.

Early Monday morning, I had a meeting with the contractor and the builder about the office. We compromised and met in the middle: I get a window that is twice as large as planned (and costs twice as much too. It’s a veritable panorama window; the neighbours will be pleased to look at me all day.

In return, I let go of the storage area under the stairs. The wall there is a traditional timber frame (if that’s the correct word), and removing the lower part only would make the rest very unstable and prone to cracks in an earthquake. However, the wall to the full-size oshi-ire storage is already gone as I’m writing this. Interestingly, it’s just 4 cm thick or so – no wonder Japanese traditional houses are so cold!

Speaking of cold: Yesterday I woke up to only 8 degrees in my room. I guess that the large hold downstairs in the office has something to do with it. Overnight, the carpenter closes it with plywood, so there is no safety issue. Fun fact: He seems quite happy to crawl in and out of the window instead of using the main door directly next to it. Guys…

In other news, I have successfully changed my private address at the ward office and the bank, and my lawyer has all the documents to do the same for my company. Interestingly, as the CEO, my private address is entered in the company register and needs changing as well. Other things seem to run smoothly – I already got a gas bill over 45 yen the other day.

I wish the unpacking would go just as smoothly. The last two nights, I tackled the kitchen, but there was hardly any progress. The cabinets under the counter are still atrociously dirty inside and out, and every time I touch something, I feel the urge to clean it (yet again), rather than putting stuff inside. They also seem rather small, and the top shelves are hard to reach. I have decided to choose very carefully where I put something, rather than having to change everything in a few weeks because I can’t access what I really need.

Overall, I’m quite tired. The carpenter starts at 8:30 every morning, and I need to be halfway presentable by that time (the shower has a glass door…) Also, my arthritis has flared up again. The constant up and down the stairs, the kneeling and standing on steps, and playing the game of “where does this box go and what’s in it anyway” has taken quite a toll. I don’t know who takes credit for inventing painkillers, but he needs to be sainted. The last few days I have taken them first thing in the morning just to keep moving – both the boxes and myself…

Anyway, I hope things will get better soon, and I’ll feel truly at home.