Six years ago I wandered into a bar in Kuki, Japan. I was giving Aya some alone time with her parents so I decided to set out on my own. Feeling a little overconfident and wanting a sense of independence and adventure, I hit the streets loaded with about ten Japanese words in my vocabulary and a digital translator dictionary that I had no idea how to work.
This is my 8th visit to Japan. Each time I visit I’m much more comfortable, I question the food less, the customs less, and I go with the flow as much as possible. There is one place though that always remains a mystery to me; the Japanese hot springs, or onsen as they are called in Japan.
I ended after a very long, stressful, irritating, exhausting flight asking the question, “Isthis what vacation is like from now on?”
“This” being not really having a moment alone, a moment to relax, a moment to feel rested, a moment that feels like an actual vacation. You know, like you had pre baby. Well, the short answer is, yes. Yes, this is how vacations will be from now on, which sounds awful. But the long answer isn’t a simple yes or no, and it really isn’t as dreadful sounding.
I’m no stranger to the kitchen. Before we had a kid, my wife and I both cooked. I’d say she did the majority of it, but I still did a couple times a week. When I cooked, I rarely followed recipes. For some reason, I don’t like following directions. I prefer to fumble, trip and fall, and figure it out on my own instead of reading instructions. Not always, but most often.
I thought I could control myself, but I couldn’t. I thought that this was behind me, but I was wrong.
I think about you all the time. You occupy my mind all hours of the day. When I’m at the park with Ellie, I think about how we can be together. When I’m driving, you dictate which route I take so I can see you. I wonder if anyone can tell. Can they see my wandering eyes? Do they notice our unspoken bond? Did I get rid of the evidence in time? I yearn to be with you. I ache for you. Actually my stomach aches. Yes, you guessed it. I’m having an affair, a food affair.