The thing with buying a house is that you kind of have to move into it and so, after about three weeks of shifting stuff, arguing with R, and working on the irritating process of cleaning, I feel like I can say we have moved house.

Moving is disorienting and, for me personally, somehow very depressing. We’ve picked up our lives, all the important bits, the miscellaneous parts and even “why did I ever buy this” ones, and planted them somewhere else in a chaotic mess. The familiar is rendered unfamiliar, and the unfamiliar has to be wrangled into the familiar. The buses we take, the way we turn the taps on, each light switch, the rooms I spend the most time in and the ones I don’t, the view from the window. I find myself sitting in the car at the supermarket, ready to go home, and having to remind myself where home is and how to get there. It’s all so very mundane yet deeply unsettling.

And we’ve just moved suburbs!

For me, the whole sense of being in a weird limbo has been exacerbated by our internet issues. We have only just had it reconnected and my over-reliance on my iPhone’s mobile network as a back-up in the meantime sent me way over the data limit and rendered it almost unusable for online dealings. As a result, I spent the last three weeks scuttling to cafes more than ever just to keep vaguely abreast of what’s happening in my corners of cyberspace. Normal, yet not, and all but impossible to manage to blog.

We still have access to our old place and there’s still cleaning to be done there, but the focus is very much on settling and just living again now. I’m working on things. We’ll get there.


A house in Japan

By the time R and I had to make a choice between applying for a pricey Australian spouse visa or relocating back to Japan, I already had misgivings about the latter. Still, I was 24, and I’d moved from Australia to Japan and back again with relative ease. I figured our decision to live in Japan, should we find that it had been the wrong one, was reversible.

It wasn’t. Oh, It was always theoretically possible, but not in practice. The older we got, the harder it seemed to pick up our whole lives and dump them in the other of our countries.

And now here we are, buying a house with a corresponding mortgage attached, and hopefully formally adopting our pair of monkey cats. It’s an understatement to say that a move back to Australia just slipped a bit further out of reach. I have, as I dramatically, half-jokingly declare, condemned myself to Japan.

The house itself is about as traditional and ornate as you could imagine and beyond my weirdest dreams. I didn’t imagine this would be my life even two months ago, so how could I have imagined it five, ten, fifteen years ago?But this is my life. I chose it and yet I didn’t, and it no longer really feels reversible. I can only hope the good continues to outweigh the bad.