I regret to inform you that I can no longer regularly update Single White Gaijin. The title no longer reflects my position in life, as I've returned to a fairly normal bohemian lifestyle in Bloomington, Indiana. The small instances of Culture Shock are actually a formerly common feature of my American life. I've always hated rude people, and I've always been a little disturbed/disgusted by American supermarkets (I think I'll forever exile myself from anything resembling a Walmart Supercenter).
My life is picking up, and I'm fully (perhaps over) employed. A few days a week at a record store, and few days a week at a coffeeshop. I have all these newly acquired Hipster Points, but I'm not entirely sure where they're redeemable.
Of course, I'm still trying to wrangle my stuff from the Japanese company, and the two American companies they've sent me through. I've sent about 30 emails, and have gotten very little accomplished. I'm seriously considering just giving up on my right to my packages, and letting them be destroyed or impounded, or whatever. On the one hand, it's sad to let some of my most prized possessions go by the wayside on account of an incredible amount of money. On the other, stuff is just stuff. The real treasures from my time in Japan are all tucked safely into my heart and my mind. And I won't ever lose those, and they'll never get frayed at the edges and worn from use. So, when I step back and consider which mementos are likely to gather dust, as I shift them from closet to closet, and which will just glow more radiantly as time goes by, the decision does not seem as tough.
That's not to say that I'm giving up just yet.
Things are weird at home; my parents are having some serious financial trouble, and are scrambling to hold on to the house (well, if you can call it scrambling), my closest aunt was just diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, my younger brother ran away (I assume still unaccounted for; my parents didn't tell me he ran away until two weeks after the fact, so you never know), another brother was just divorced from his wife of two years, etc. It's strange to jump right back into a life that hasn't slowed or stopped since you've been gone. That's all I can think to say about that.
I started this blog in an attempt to round out my experience and finish my record of it. Instead, I just left another update. Maybe that's the best way to end it. And, then again, maybe that's not the end at all.