Well. It's getting to be that time. All of our bags are packed. All of the household items here have been scrubbed and boxed away. There is nothing left in the fridge except bottles of water in the freezer. I must say that I will not be sad to say goodbye to the 500 square feet of rust, concrete and plywood that we called home for two years.
Tomorrow the internet will be shut off and so we have finished all of our last minute phone calls, reservations and itinerary printing. In the morning we will close our bank accounts and in the afternoon we will drive down the Kiso Valley to Nagiso and return our car. Our last drive in Japan. We are both hoping to remain accident free and will not really miss the disconcerting driving techniques that many folks practice on the roads here.
On Friday our electric, water and gas will be turned off and we will settle our final bills. Once we are all finished with the business of leaving, we will do what comes naturally to us both and move on, carrying bags unexpectedly heavy, filled with memories and mementos. It has been a good time living here and I can't imagine what our lives would have been had we not landed on this lakeside for these two years.
While we fly out on Saturday we will spend our final night not here in Okaya, but in Tokyo. We'll head to the airport and board a plane, leaving this nation of islands but carrying these past two years in our hearts.
See you on the flip side...