Sunday Morning 3/29/2020: Quarantine Life

Flooding at the junction of the Kapaa bypass and the Kuhio highway just south of Kapaa yesterday morning; it rained hard again last night too.

What an insane week this has been! It’s hard for me to believe that a week ago this time we were still in Japan, although we were getting ready to leave. Since then we’ve gone through our trip back to Kaua’i, the efforts to get YaYu here, and now we’re starting the process of resettling on the island in the middle of a pandemic and quarantine. It’s been hard to take it all in at times.

Quarantine Life: Where we’re spending most of our time for the next two weeks.

YaYu arrived home on Friday evening, but not without a bit of work. After two cancellations and two schedule changes to her original itinerary, we were nearing our wits’ ends, and when Delta changed her flight once again to Saturday we said enough! I called Delta and in five minutes had her on a new flight that departed early Friday morning. Her boyfriend’s mom and I set up a plan about what to do if she got stuck anywhere, so those bases were covered before she departed, but thankfully each of the three flights involved in her itinerary took off on time and even got her here to Kaua’i a little early. I had a fairly sleepless Thursday night/early Friday morning though as we had asked her to message us each time she arrived at her layovers, and then each time she boarded the next plane – we needed to know she wasn’t getting stuck somewhere. She’s now settling into her quarantine, and Brett and I are feeling a lot more relaxed than we were.

The Wailua Bridge remains closed until the log dam behind it, created by Friday night’s torrential rains, can be removed.

The rain since we arrived has been nearly non-stop and quite heavy at times. Friday night was the worst, with massive amounts of rain falling all night along with a fierce thunderstorm. Lightning was all around and struck the golf course next to us a couple of times which was VERY loud and shook the entire condo. As you can see from the pictures at the top, roads and bridges around the island had to be closed because of flooding. People also had to be evacuated from their homes in the middle of the night, but thankfully no lives were lost nor was anyone hurt.

We got our car the day after we arrived, and on Wednesday found a place to live following YaYu’s quarantine. Brett and I went out that day and looked at two places on the south side (Koloa/Lawai/Kalaheo) that we had spotted on Craigslist. The first place was nice, with two bedrooms and gorgeous views of the countryside, but the trip up to its location and then back down to the highway was quite treacherous, and the rent was also at the top of our budget. In fact, by the time we made it back to the highway (alive) we had decided we didn’t want to live there even if we were accepted (we weren’t). The second place we looked at was a smaller, older apartment. It was a nice size and in a much better location; the rent was much less and included utilities; and, it came with a new refrigerator and a new washer and dryer (we would have had to share the washer and dryer at the other place). There was also a nice yard where Brett could putter around. After checking it out we said we would take it and were accepted on the spot (we still had to pass a credit and criminal check, which we did easily) and we will officially be in possession of the apartment on Tuesday. However, we have to stay at our condo on the north side until April 11 as YaYu is under full quarantine and has to stay inside here, but that will give Brett and I a few days to go down and try to get the place set up as much as possible before our official move-in. I’m not sure how much of that we can accomplish as almost all stores on the island are closed and movement is limited, but at the least, we should be able to get a bed, sofa, and a TV in to get us started, and we can eat Costco casseroles and sandwiches, and use paper plates until our things arrive from the mainland. We have no idea how long that will take though – Amazon shipments are currently taking a month or more at a minimum to get over here so getting our stuff across the ocean may take much longer. In other words, getting re-settled is going to take a good, long while, but we now have the basics in place and are moving forward. It’s been great having our old car back too – it runs great and makes us feel like we never left. All that’s left to do is transfer the title but county offices are currently closed so whenever they reopen we will take care of that piece of business.

Our soon-to-be new home

Although schools in Japan are supposed to be reopening next week, according to our son, Tokyo appears to be moving toward stronger quarantine measures at the same time so whether the kids will go back is still unknown. A resurgence of the virus is expected, and the government is ordering/recommending stricter measures short of a full lockdown in hopes of keeping the virus tamped down. By the way, it snowed in Tokyo yesterday – unreal for this time of year!

Snow day on the balcony.

I have tried not to think about how much money we may have lost over all the changes we had to make to our travel plans in the past couple of weeks. We are outside the no-fee change dates for the flight we booked on Aeromexico to go from Mexico City to New York in May as well as our flight from Boston back to Portland on Alaska in early June. We can pay a cancellation fee with Alaska and at least get back about 68% of what we paid, but the Aeromexico flight is a complete loss. Delta fully refunded our Dallas to Mexico City flight (Delta has been amazing during all of this and we will remember that when it comes to future travel). We also lost the entire amount we paid for our one-night stay in Vermont following WenYu’s graduation as any cancellation included the first night’s stay and we were only there for one night. Our Airbnb host in Mexico has also refused to refund all of what we paid because if she cancels she loses her Superhost status, but she has agreed to return 75% of what we paid and give us the rest in a coupon toward a future stay. She hasn’t been able to accomplish anything from her end though, and we have asked Airbnb repeatedly to look into it, but who knows how long that will take or if it will ever be resolved. If we cancel we will lose everything. I realize these are all first-world problems, and others are hurting far worse than we are, but it’s still extremely frustrating. We are grateful for all the people who did refund our money and I hope we will get some further relief from Airbnb, but I’m not really counting on it at this point.

This morning I am:

  • Reading: I’ve given up on reading for the time being as I’ve been unable to sit and focus, even with a good book, for any period of time.
    Blue skies returned for a while on Saturday afternoon, but the rain eventually returned.
  • Listening to: Brett is rustling around in the kitchen making blueberry pancakes this morning. YaYu is up, but she’s as quiet as a mouse (for now). There are blue skies outside again and a gentle breeze blowing, thank goodness – I hope it lasts. The condo complex is very quiet overall, but that’s because there really isn’t anyone here but us and a few other full-time residents.
  • Watching: I watched Knives Out last night on my computer, but otherwise we again didn’t watch anything this past week. We have full cable here, but got out of the habit of watching TV when we were in Japan. I’m sure YaYu will get us involved again fairly soon, although she is pretty busy now with her online classes.
  • Cooking: Brett and I enjoyed a Costco meatloaf and mashed potatoes for most of our meals last week – we had it for dinner on three nights along with some four-bean salad and then used the last of it up in sandwiches on Friday. It was very good and we would buy it again. Things will get eaten more quickly though with YaYu here. This week we’ll be having enchiladas (also from Costco), pork yakisoba, CookDo pork and pepper stir fry, and breakfast for dinner one evening. I will be doing prep in the kitchen, but YaYu will be the chief cook. We couldn’t find any fresh chicken at Costco, and customers were limited to one package there anyway. Shelves in Costco and Big Save market were stripped bare of some items (i.e. especially ramen and rice, and of course toilet paper), but the Princeville Foodland market has had everything we couldn’t find earlier, although at a higher price, and we were able to get toilet paper there. We’re still trying to find out if we can set up a weekly CSA delivery from one of the local farmers – I am craving Kaua’i produce!
  • Happy I accomplished last week: I am sort of amazed by all we accomplished this past week: flights home to Kaua’i; getting food and getting settled into the condo; getting our travel wardrobes washed and put away; finding a place to live; and most of all, getting YaYu home. It was a day later than we initially hoped for and took a bit of work, but she is here now and that’s what counts. And, we seem to have conquered our jet lag in less than a week – a new record! One big (and happy) chore YaYu and I took care of yesterday was sorting out all the KitKats we brought back. We made bags of them that we’ll send to Meiling and her boyfriend, WenYu and her boyfriend, and to YaYu’s boyfriend and his family. The rest went into a big bowl and the three of us will have one every evening after dinner and hopefully can make them last for a while. I had one of the tangerine ones last night and it was delicious!
  • Looking forward to next week: Tomorrow is Brett’s and my 41st anniversary. Our celebration will be very low key: we’re having enchiladas for dinner and ice cream with chocolate sauce and whipped cream for dessert. I’m going to get started ordering some things for the apartment this week as we will have a few items from IKEA (flat packs) included in our shipment that Brett can assemble once they get here. Ordering furniture is always fun (for me, anyway), and that needs to be done before we can set up our shipment.
  • Thinking of good things that happened: Arriving back on Kaua’i and finding a place to live so quickly was a very good thing, especially in our preferred location. Having our car back again has been a good thing too. And of course, best of all is having YaYu here with us. The other girls are doing well, although we worry about Meiling and her boyfriend in NYC. They have not gone out of their apartment except for one quick trip to the grocery store. There are apparently no chickens/roosters in or around this condo complex either as we haven’t seen nor heard even one of them. It will probably be the complete opposite though at our new place – we are mentally preparing ourselves.
  • Thinking of frugal things we did: Choosing the less expensive rental was the most frugal thing we did this past week, and with utilities being included in the rent our island budget will be in very good shape and help us put more away for YaYu’s college expenses (important since she most likely will not find employment this summer) and also give us more discretionary income. Our grocery expenses upon arrival were quite high as prices for everything but gasoline have gone way up but we have enough food to last the three of us for over two weeks.
  • Grateful for: Brett and I are feeling beyond blessed to have such good friends, and such a wonderful son and daughter-in-law. They have been and were an immense help this past week and offered unwavering support over the past two weeks when we needed it most.
  • Bonus question: Is there anything you regret not getting to do on this last visit to Japan? In spite of all the restrictions that came about (for good reason), the one thing Brett and I most regret is that we weren’t able to visit Kamakura as we had planned. It’s one of the most interesting cities to visit in Japan, and one of our favorites, but it was just too risky at this time especially considering it would have involved over an hour-long train ride each way with transfers in two busy stations (Shibuya and Yokohama). We feel sad that we did not get to go to the brunch at the New Sanno Hotel, especially since this was one of the first things C asked if we could do, and also that we couldn’t be in Japan for his birthday. We had reservations at the New Sanno for Easter brunch, but all brunches at the hotel have been canceled for now. Otherwise, we have no regrets over how things turned out and appreciate the opportunity we were given to spend increased time with our family and explore and discover the area surrounding our apartment in Sangenjaya.
Beautiful packaging . . . for fish!

Finally, the answer to the mystery food I posted a couple of weeks ago: the food shown above are fish cakes! Called kamaboko in Japanese, these mild fish cakes have been eaten in Japan since the 14th century. Made from pureed, deboned whitefish, the fish is formed into loaves on a narrow piece of wood and then steamed until they have the consistency of a firm sausage. Besides the standard loaves shown above, kamaboko is also formed into a variety of different shapes for other purposes, such as for oden, Japan’s most famous winter stew. Kamaboko is eaten and enjoyed in a variety of ways, such as fresh and dipped into a sauce, or sauteed and served warm, or sliced and added on top of a bowl of ramen or other noodles. The pink color and the grilled topping are done purely for aesthetics – the three versions above are otherwise the same. Red kamaboko is also available; it is most often used on holidays or for special celebrations. Kamaboko is popular in Hawaii too – it’s made locally and always served with saimin. It is also sometimes used to make a tasty dip!

Thank you for all your support over the past week or so – it’s been quite a roller-coaster ride! We are missing Japan and our family there so much still, and that’s been hard to deal with along with all the worry over getting YaYu back to us. The next couple of weeks are going to be hard as we get ourselves moved into more permanent housing. But things have and will work themselves out, and all your comments have helped. Here’s wishing you are all well and continue to stay that way, and that in spite of all that is currently swirling around us, that you and yours stay safe and healthy, and good things continue to happen.


34 thoughts on “Sunday Morning 3/29/2020: Quarantine Life

  1. Hi Laura –
    Right now it’s best to keep an eye on flights as most schedules are being canceled. However, the airlines are doing this slowly so as to prevent a mass amount of refunds/changes. Hang tight and don’t make any drastic changes until closer to the actual flight date as they will likely change/cancel and then your options improve. There are also services out there that can assist/advise with possible doing this on your behalf. One of them is: Good luck!


    1. Hi Tommy – thanks for the tip about waiting it out. That’s what I’m doing with Alaska, and hoping things change. Aeromexico is a bust though – thankfully the tickets were not hugely expensive. I’m beginning to think Airbnb is a lost cause though, as is our host in Mexico. She wants to rerent the place – we wouldn’t even be there yet – but refuses to give us back 100% of what we’ve paid when we can’t go. I’m going to keep trying though.

      Thanks too for the link to the Cranky Concierge – I am going to check them out because I think Im going need their help!


    1. Thanks, Kris! A quiet day so far – it’s been raining all day so far, so no walks today or anything special today. Just another day in quarantine!

      Happy anniversary to you and C as well – yours is just few months ahead of ours if I remember correctly!


  2. I am so happy your daughter is home! Wow, what a week!!! So so happy you found a permanent place to stay during this unsettled time, and in a location you like. Frontier issued me a credit for my plane flight that was supposed to happen in late April to see my grandchild. I do have to schedule the flight within 90 days but it does not have to be used by then, just scheduled. I would have preferred my money back , but I will take it. I am sure I am going to lose non refundable deposit at hotel in Pensacola for my daughter’s scheduled trip in late June. I had gotten a special rate before all this happened. It is what it is. What is important is that our families are safe. I always loved your Hawaiian posts and I am looking forward to seeing lots of photos. It looks so beautiful there.


    1. Getting ourselves moved over to our new place next week is going to be a challenge. We can get essential items (some furniture, and household items) but no deliveries, etc. so we have to move it all ourselves and I am about worthless at that. YaYu can’t help either as she will still have to stay in quarantine here. Stay tuned!

      I would love to receive a credit for our Alaska flights versus losing over 30% of what we paid but they don’t do inter-island flights which is about the only way we could use the credit these days. I’ve got my fingers and toes crossed that they extend the dates to make changes though, and that a credit can be used for someone else as we will need to fly YaYu back over here for Christmas. The whole thing could have been far, far worse though – Delta, thank goodness, has been amazing as far as rescheduling, refunds, etc.

      I agree though that what is more important than money is that our families are safe!

      We are glad to be back here again, and looking forward to getting to know another part of the island better this time around.


  3. Happy Anniversary!
    It is easy to “hear” the relief in your words now that YaYu is safely home. Lovely. It was so cool to learn all you had to do was make a phone call to keep them from continuously bumping her to another flight!

    And amazing how much you and Brett have accomplished since you arrived back. So exciting you already found a rental. Yes, expect your financial losses will be hard to take with the pandemic requiring the major change in plans. On the other hand it was a necessity almost as if it were a lockdown caused by war.This pandemic is extremely serious.

    Hope your AirBnB issues work out, I know it is tough to lose money like that. I would think AirBnB would not change a host status in these times of pandemic. I think a phone call or message to AirBnB to get the real scoop might be useful. (Like Delta was when you called!) I know AirBnB was helpful when I had to reschedule due to my injury. And my host in Edinburgh was even more helpful giving me a full refund.

    It’s uncanny how well your re-entry to home has gone, clearly it was meant to be! Love the photos too of the apartment.

    So very happy for you,


    1. I am getting nervous about getting ourselves moved into our new place – I dreamt last night that martial law had been put in place and we kept getting stopped and almost arrested as we tried to move! I don’t think it’s going to be that bad, and we have a letter from the office in Honolulu that we are allowed to move essentials, but it’s still sort of overwhelming.

      Airbnb continues to be frustrating. I and the host have called – they are not taking calls – and emails/messages have not been answered. I am pretty sure their lives are not fun right now, so I’m willing to be patient for a bit longer, but would like it resolved. Every other Airbnb host has returned our money though, with understanding – I am not sure why this host is being so cranky, especially since she’s intends to re-rent the place.

      The apartment has a lot of potential. There’s even a big jetted tub, although the jets aren’t working (we may get those repaired on our own, if possible). I especially love the yard, and having a nice-sized private deck where we can be outside to enjoy it.

      It will all work out eventually – we’re happy YaYu is safe, and that our other children are too. That’s what’s important.


  4. Glad to hear YaYu arrived safely! What an ordeal though. I imagine that was very stressful for you all. But at least she’s home and you can move forward with your life on Kauai.

    Congrats on finding an apartment so quickly. It looks very nice! Did you decide against Princeville or was there nothing available? The Koloa area is pretty and so close to Poipu Beach (one of my favorites).

    Sorry to hear the weather has been so rainy. The photos of the Wailua Bridge and Kapaa Bypass are scary and it’s amazing no one was injured or worse.

    I haven’t been able to focus on reading either. I have a library book I’ve been wanting to read called “The Book of Ichigo Ichie: The Art of Making the Most of Every Moment, the Japanese Way” but I haven’t been able to even start it. It’s not due back until June 1 since the library is closed. I actually had the book on hold and didn’t get a chance to pick it up before the library closed due to the coronavirus, but they were nice enough to send it to me!

    I would never think those packages contain fish!

    Stay safe and well.


    1. YaYu’s trip home was an adventure, for all of us. We bought her a first-class ticket (prices were down) so that she could be distanced from other passengers – a couple of the flights she was on she was the only passenger in first! On her flight from Seattle to Lihue, there were only 10 passengers on the plane, and some of those were crew members returning home to Kaua’i. Strange, frightening times we’re living in.

      We picked the southside as nothing up in Princeville is really affordable and it’s just too far away from everything. It is beautiful though. The southside (not Poipu) still has beautiful vegetation, good weather, and we’re not that far from Lihue or Costco. Our place is not that far from Kukuiula Marketplace (good market on Wednesdays when those get going again) and the Big Save in Koloa. We’ll be located further from our friends, but to be honest we are not going to miss that drive through Kapaa.

      Right now I am putting books on my Kindle so they’ll be there when I’m ready to read again. But otherwise I have no interest or patience – my mind is just all over the place.

      Stay safe and well right back to you!


      1. I haven’t been to the Kukuiula Marketplace so I will have to check that out next time I go to Kauai, which unfortunately probably won’t be for a long time. I’ve also never stayed in Poipu. I’ve only been to the beach there so maybe I will do that next time. The two times I visited I stayed in the same hotel in Kapaa. I don’t blame you for not wanting to live there with all that traffic.

        A friend was on a flight recently where they only allowed passengers to sit in every other row and they all had to sit by the window. The flight was mostly empty so it was easy to do this, and the flight attendants did not serve food or drinks. It was a short flight anyway, but this whole situation feels like a science fiction movie.

        I agree about reading. I’ll get back to it one of these days.


      2. Kukuiula Market is a high-end shopping venue for the Poipu crowd, but there is a Lappert’s there, and a couple of other places we like to go. They also have good restaurants and we sometimes chose one of those for our anniversary dinner.

        YaYu got a boxed meal on each of her flights – and she was in first class! Also, only bottled water to drink. She was the only person in first on a couple of flights (which was our reason for paying for seats for her there – we wanted her distanced from everyone else).

        I am started to get bored with the activities I’ve been doing, and TV still hasn’t drawn me in, so I plan to stock up my Kindle in the next day or so and get into reading again.


  5. I am so glad that your daughter made it safely home, I feel the relief when you write about it.You guys have been through a whirlwind last week, but hopefully you’ll reach calmer waters once you move into your new digs. Ordering from IKEA is a good idea and although it may take a while to get the boxes delivered, you know that eventually the boxes will arrive and everything will fall in place. Probably the best strategy is to take one day at a time, like everyone else these days. As far as the plane tickets refund, you may not be able to get money back but the airline may give you a credit to use for future flights, so it may not be all lost.Some companies give up to 9 months to use that credit.Right now I think there are millions of travelers in your situation, so we may see a relief from the air companies as they’re trying to figure out things. The same with AirBnB. There have been so many cancellations globally that they must ease some of their requirements and refund or give credit to people like you.It isn’t your fault that all this happened nor it’s their fault.
    Wishing you good health and calmer days ahead!


    1. Most of our focus now is coming up with a plan to get ourselves moved over to our new place next week. We are going furniture shopping tomorrow – the managers of one of the stores in town is going to open the store just for us so we can shop alone – isn’t that nice? Just hope their stuff is not too expensive, but we can get a sofa there and a mattress. Of course, no deliveries allowed – we are going to have to rent a van (somehow) and get it all moved ourselves. We’ll manage though.

      We’re keeping our fingers crossed on the credits from airlines, that they can be used with partner airlines as Delta, for example, does not do inter-island flights, nor does Alaska. If not, we will lose those credits as they’re not enough to get us to and from the mainland (and we don’t want to go back anyway, at least not right now). Airbnb is the tough nut to crack though – hopefully they will loosen up their dates or something, but for now the cutoff is April 14 our reservation didn’t start until April 20. They’re nearly impossible to get hold of too.

      Things will calm down eventually. We’re hoping that thing will ease up for travel by June so that we can get YaYu over to Japan then to help her brother again this summer. They loved having her last year and want her to come again this year (and they pay well). If that doesn’t happen YaYu will just be sitting around – there are and will be no jobs here on Kaua’i this summer.


      1. I once had a AirBnB issue and I got a lot of help from a guy named Joe-PLUS case manager. I have a phone number 1-855-424-7262 he gave me(it may be the same number you’ve already called) but he was extremely helpful.I wish I could help you more.


      2. Thanks, Nicula. If I don’t hear back from them in a couple of days I will give him a call. I’m also going to try the number Tommy gave me for the Cranky Concierge.


  6. So glad everyone you three are safe back on Kauai! Both your quarantine spot and new place look very nice. I remember all the flooding when I was there two years ago – it was so crazy! Glad you are settling in!


    1. Hey Denise – we are enjoying Princeville, but just for this stay. It’s still too expensive a place for us to live and too far away from everything for our needs. Living on the southside is going to be a new experience too, but we’re in a good location there – close to Kukuiula Marketplace and old Koloa town (and the Big Save market there). It will be interesting to see what survives this shutdown here, and probably pretty sad too because many places won’t make it. I think it will be a while before the tourists come back. Right now it feels sort of like how things probably were back in the 1960s – quiet and uncrowded.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. WOW, you got an amazing amount accomplished since getting back to the States! And YaYu made it, hurray!

    Your new place looks really nice and I love the backyard. It’ll be a beautiful spot to relax, once the weather gets better.

    We now have a total of 882 cases in BC and 6258 in all of Canada, with steep increases announced daily. Note that those numbers are actually deceptively low, because we have a shortage of test kits. I don’t even want to think about what the true numbers are.

    We’re all being encouraged to “flatten the curve” and there are signs that it might be working, but it’s still a little too early to tell.

    I went grocery shopping for the first time in ten days, and found a lot had changed:
    There were decals on the floor and signs everywhere reminding everyone to stand two metres apart. Only a very limited number of people were allowed in the store, with someone at the door letting one person in every time someone left. When I got inside the store, I found it was almost empty, with cashiers now behind a plexiglass partition.

    There are still bare shelves in the stores, but not as many as a few weeks ago. Still no masks, no hand santizer, disinfecting wipes. It was all very surreal.

    Fish! I should’ve known, ha ha.

    Happy anniversary!


    1. The weather since we arrived has been awful. But, it’s great weather for staying indoors!

      Brett does are shopping here – we don’t both need to be out. Only a few people are lt into the store at a time, and people waiting have to stand on XXs outside so they are far enough away from other shoppers. There have been over 175 cases of COVID-19 in Hawaii now, but only 11 on Kaua’i, and some of those have recovered and some have returned to the mainland. Others are in quarantine and are being monitored. The rest of the U.S. scares me to death – we’re especially concerned for our daughter and her boyfriend in NYC, but they assure us they are taking no chances.

      The new place probably won’t be set up until the end of summer, at the earliest, but I’ll get pictures posted as soon as it is!


  8. It sounds as if YaYu squeaked in between the storms. The damage is impressive.

    How fun the KitKat collection looks! And a happy project to divvy them up to send out.

    I’m a firm believer that when one is on the right path, things happen very smoothly i.e., your flight back to Hawaii, a beautiful place to be quarantined, finding a new apartment with good $$ and appliances – though that kitchen sink is SMALL! All seems to be in order.

    The pandemic became personal when my next door neighbor and her son tested positive this week. I had brought them groceries and had some interaction while practicing social distancing before they were diagnosed, but now I’m in self-quarantine. So far, so good.

    In my area EMTs are just about to start wearing fire fighting respirators ($6,000 but can be sanitized and reused but needs canisters of oxygen every 25 minutes) as we are almost out of face masks (less than $1 normally), mandatory quarantining for first responders has been lifted as there just isn’t enough staff, and CT’s hospitalization rate is 20%. A different neighbor is a nurse and the hospitals are desperate for supplies. How is this happening in one of the richest countries in the world? And CT is the wealthiest state in the union. The lack of competent leadership at the Federal level is jaw dropping.

    I love seeing the photos of Hawaii and look forward to the distraction! I, too, am unable to concentrate on reading. For me it is a good barometer of my mental health.


    1. I am so saddened by what’s going on in my country – so much more could have been done to prepare for this and wasn’t, and now precious time has been lost and people are dying. Just a total lack of leadership from the top on down. It’s heartening to read of the many people stepping up to help, but we’ve still got a long road ahead of us.

      We are so happy to have YaYu with us. She has us playing games, is helping out with the cooking, and is doing her coursework online. She misses her friends and boyfriend, but has said she’s rather be here with us. She talked with WenYu yesterday and they are already plotting a Christmas reunion here!

      The bar sink in the kitchen is going to be a challenge, although when we saw it, it wasn’t as bad as the picture made it seem. The kitchen is otherwise nice (albeit small), with a pantry, adequate counter space, and a new refrigerator. We’re also glad we’re not paying utilties, and the area is much breezier than where we lived before. If I have to install an A/C this summer we told the landlord we would pay extra rent to cover the expense.

      So far the KitKats have been delicious, but I have lots of flavors to go. I had the banana caramel one yesterday from Tokyo Banana – wow!


    1. Yeah! The commenting hack worked! I have been reading faithfully and hated having no way to comment. I dislike running Chrome on my Mac for a variety of reasons, but will now whenever I want to comment on Blogger!

      We are happy to be back here again! It will take a while to get settled but we’ll get it done.


  9. I’m so glad that YaYu finally made it home. Looks like a great place when you have to be stuck in quarantine. Love your new place too but that sink, what were they thinking? Too much rain for you and not enough for us. Looks to be the driest March on record. No rain at all. Hopefully you will dry out and we will get some rain. Happy Anniversary!


    1. We’re excited about our new place, and hope we can find the basic things we need to get settled here on the island. Amazon shipping is taking nearly a month! That little sink is going to be a challenge, but wasn’t as bad when we saw it as it looks in the picture.

      It has rained every day since we got here. Lousy for being back in Hawaii, but works if you have to stay indoors.


  10. Glad you are all back home and doing well! Will be interested to hear how moving goes and see pics as you get settled in.


    1. The one item I am worried about getting moved is a sofa. I can carry (or at least help carry) a mattress and other things, but sofas are heavy! We’ll manage but I hope we don’t dissolve into biting each others’ heads off. I’ll post pictures after we get settled!


  11. Happy anniversary to you and Brett! Glad to hear you and your family are all safe, and you’ve got a nice place for your permanent housing. I had a close call myself. I had planned to depart for Spain on March 16. The airlines cancelled my flights a few days before and issued me full refunds. I was able to cancel my hotel bookings without penalty. I’m grateful to be home with my family. Have a restful week and some fun with online furniture shopping!


    1. Thanks, Natalie. Brett is over at the market right now picking up ice cream for tonight’s special dessert. We decided to make banana splits as other than ice cream we have everything on hand. Those will be fun and special.

      I’m keeping my fingers crossed the airlines and Airbnb situations get resolved – I have to stay hopeful or I’d go nuts over how much we would lose.

      We’ve completed our IKEA list – will get to ordering next week. The goods will be left in our friend’s carport – she won’t have to interact with anyone. We’re also going to call the shipping company next week and start working on that. Hopefully things can get over here sooner rather than later.


  12. Not sure what happened to my previous comment, so I thought I’d do a quick follow up.

    Happy Anniversary! Glad to see YaYu made it back safely, that you have a nice place to quarantine, and that you found a new place so quickly! I am jealous of the warm weather. It’s gray and back into the 30’s and 40’s here. But we are expecting a bit of a warmup later in the week. It is spring, after all! 🙂

    Like you, I’m finding it hard to focus on a book most days. But we are enjoying the insanity of Peaky Blinders, which is just so crazy and convoluted that we can escape into it for a bit every evening.

    Stay Safe!


    1. Laurel – sometimes your comments go straight to spam (so do a couple of others’ and all of you have been commenting for ages. Just some sort of WordPress glitch, I assume).

      Anyway, we are here and it’s warm although it’s also very wet. Allergies are having a field day as well although nothing bothered me when we were here before. This time though? Full sinuses, post-nasal drip, itchy eyes, etc. But it is warm – we have to have windows open and ceiling fans on to stay comfortable.

      I can’t wait until I can calm down again enough to read and focus on what I’m reading. For now it’s all I can do to get through Twitter and play a game now and then on my phone. It’s hard to write too, but I’m working on things in bits and pieces and that helps as does hearing from everyone here on the blog.

      You stay safe too! Is your mom doing OK? And your daughter?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My mom is doing fine so far. I am SO glad they moved to a continuing care apartment last year. They’re independent but having meals delivered, etc. She sounds good and regales me with stories of living under quarantine for scarlet fever in the Depression. As she has always said, everything is relative and her youth had some hard, hard times in it. So she seems OK.

        DD has been told her partner can no longer attend midwife visits, but so far they can still have one person attend the birth. If they pull that back, I think she will lose it. But so far, so good. Thanks for asking!


      2. Both good reports, all things considered. My grandmother had TB as a child and had to live in a sanitarium for a while, away from everything and everyone else. After that, she said, she could get through anything.


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