Monthly Archive: September 2015


I recently had an accident on my bike. I was cut off by someone making a left turn and I slammed on my breaks, flew over my handle bars, bounced off the car and landed on my left knee and my head. Sounds crazy but I survived. I was pissed and punched the side rear window of the car twice. The driver was an old man and the passenger was his wife. They woman came out to check on me and asked if I was ok and I told her to, “look,” in Japanese. Then she casually walked away, got into the car an it sped off. I copied down the license number just in case.
My knee is still healing. I was bummed because I had just had my bike painted, returned from America and I was on my way home with my new foreigner identification card. I was in pain for weeks and I’m just now starting to feel better but it was a reality check. I wasn’t riding that fast but maybe I still had jet lag and I wasn’t all there. My bike was fine but I wasn’t. It was scary and painful. One more reminder that I was mortal. IMG_0939
Now I’m here, Silver Week, enjoying one of the few limited Japanese holidays. Living near Tokyo, everything moves at a dizzying pace and so to have slow-down is great. I have a family, so I’m busy, I also have a small business and I work part-time teaching English. I get burnt out often, sometimes , frustrated. I know some people who have been here over ten years, I know some people who don’t want to go home or can’t go home. I have choices they don’t have but I’m giving myself another five years if not sooner.
Last night I had some dream that I was in some temple but it was flooding from the bottom floors and I was racing to get to another level before the water reached me. It was so weird. At some point I was watching it from a far. What did all of this mean? I don’t know. Everyday here is a challenge, similar to understanding some strange dream you had the night before. I’m glad that I came and I’ve grown a lot but it’s not home. I have a lot here in Japan than some people who have been here longer than me. I’m comfortable but there is always more. I guess I’m never satisfied.
Being home this past summer was great. I went to a local university near my mothers house and talked to an archivist who had built a display about the Watts Riots of 1965. It was fascinating learning about the process of presenting history. A few floors above was an archive filled with historical documents and books about African-American history. I felt like I was in heaven until it was all interrupted by a phone call. It was then that I realised that I had found what I really wanted to do. That I wanted to study more, to learn more about history. That I’m not really doing what I want.
I’m not alone so, I can’t just think about myself anymore. I have children to raise and I’m married. Some people can do it all at the same time. I feel I can too.
For now I’m back in Japan, healing and wondering what my next move is going to be. I had a good vacation but I feel a little bit lost. I’m not satisfied with my work or living her in Japan. I’m anxious to go home and to travel more. I want to do something else. This is not it for me. I was diving for silver dollars at Redondo beach this summer and I remember that feeling I felt of being in the ocean and feeling totally free, and away from the crowds in the cities and on the beach. At them moment though I feel a little lost.