It seems like there's been one thing after another getting in our way, but we finally made it and we are now in Japan!
We had to go to L.A. before we took off to get Sara's Japanese passport and to get my student visa. The Japanese Consulate that serves Arizona is in Downtown L.A. I could have done my visa by mail, but just like American passports, Japanese ones have to be done in person.
So we drove to L.A. on Sunday morning and just stayed in our cheap hotel that was in the middle of Chinaland. Every building had Chinese on it and every person we saw was Asian.
The next day we drove in circles around Downtown trying first to find the Consulate and then parking. I finally pulled to the curb and called the Consulate to ask them where I should park. Surprisingly enough, everything went smoothly with the visa and passport.
After we finished at the Consulate we took off for Disneyland and spent the rest of the day there. Sachan had a great time pointing at everything, yelling at other kids, watching all the lights and movement, and listening to all the music and sounds. Rie and I had a good time too. It was nice just to relax for a little, though we were extremely tired by the end of the day. More than relaxing, I guess it was nice just not to think about everything and just watch Sachi enjoy herself. We rode a few rides for children, watched a few shows, and ate some food. It was nice.
We drove home on Tuesday and everything was going fine until we hit the I10/I17 junction. Well, the car had been making a strange noise since we left L.A. but at that point it was much louder and sounded like we had a flat tire. I checked it, but there didn't seem to be any problem with it. Just to be safe, I ended up (luckily) pulling into a gas station to change the tire. I say luckily because after I put the spare on and started lowering the jack I realized that the spare had almost no air in it. So I drove the car very slowly over to the air pump at the gas station and filled it up with air. While doing that I heard another strange noise and when I got and and looked, some cheapo plastic part had fallen out from the wheel well (is that what you call it?) apparently that was jammed in the axle or something and was making the noise I heard early and also causing the car to move like it had a flat tire. The tire turned out not to be flat. Anyway, when we finally reached Mom and Dad's house I had about all I could take.
On Wednesday morning we took off for the airport and realized when we got there that we had forgotten a suitcase. So Dad ran back home and got it for us. From that point on everything went smoothly. It's just a long flight from San Francisco to Kansai Airport, especially with a baby. Sachi was pretty good though and didn't really cry at all. I had to walk around with her a few times, but we can't complain. We were better off then some of the other parents on the flight.
Once I find out what I did with the SD card, I'll be posting some pictures from Disneyland, though I don't have too many. I will also take some picture of Rie's parent's house and the room we're staying in and whatnot once we get it all straightened up.