Tuesday, May 12, 2009


Life is different at 2,200 feet than it was at 138 feet. I say this from my new perch in Boise (a river runs through it), after having spent/squandered 32 years of the past 65 in Tokyo. If you had asked me a year ago, or even six months ago, where I would be now, Boise would not have come to mind. Nevertheless, here I am, and it is pretty good. I am gradually settling in at a nice place along the Green Belt, which is the biking/hiking trail that follows the river, and I am just a short walk from a good sports bar with a microbrewery.
I am biking now, since there are no trains and bus service runs every 20 minutes or less. Even so, the Co-op wine store is within biking distance, and they give a special discount to people who go there by bike. Add to that the fact that my bike is equipped with saddlebags that can hold six bottles on each side and I am in good shape.
The balcony is already in bloom with miniature roses and lavender, and the basil and tomatoes are peeking up while other herbs are still waiting to be sure spring has truly arrived.
So life is good, despite adversity and a crap economy that includes unemployment in the 7 percent range for the second straight month. Being thrifty is easier here than in Tokyo. Instead of paying people to take my furniture and appliances, the appliances here, including washer, dryer, fridge, garbage disposal and dish washer, are all part of the rent, and I could furnish the place with very nice second-hand items, including a huge oak, roll-top desk, for very little money (thankfully).
I don't have all the goodies for daily life yet, as my pots and pans are still somewhere between here and Tokyo. But we're getting oriented--or is it occidented?