Sunday Morning 4/3/2022: One More Month To Go

Monday’s sunset built slowly but put on a beautiful show. The clouds were actually a deeper red than they appear in the photos.

Time is moving along quickly, and just four weeks from today we’ll leave our beloved apartment. There will be a new renter moving in on May 1, so we’ll pack up the car that morning, meet our landlord at around 10:00 or so for a walkthrough, hand over the keys and get our deposit back before leaving to head for the north shore for our final eight days on Kaua’i. We’re expecting an entirely different experience with this landlord than the one we had moving out of our house in 2018.

Thank you for all the lovely comments about our upcoming move to Nashville. We are excited about the transition, which will truly be another Big Adventure, and know what a blessing it will be to have M and K so close to us for a couple of years. We’ll also be seeing our son and grandson more as well versus just once a year in Japan. Brett and I met at the naval air station in Millington, just north of Memphis, forty-five years ago (he was my instructor for a two-week course on transistor theory). We were married in Memphis, and our son was born in Millington, so we’ve spent some time in Tennessee and are familiar with the western part of the state. However, we’ve only driven through Nashville, to stop and see The Hermitage, so we’re looking forward to experiencing and learning about the city and the surrounding area as well.

Our top choice for a new car is the Subaru Outback, perfect for either an extended road trip after Nashville or surviving New England winters.

So many things remain to be figured out for our move. The biggest issue we will face is finding housing but our daughter-in-law doesn’t think she’ll know more for another month or so, or maybe not even until she arrives in Nashville. The consulate apparently contracts with certain apartments, and if M takes one of those, her housing stipend is a tax free benefit. We’re of course encouraging her to go that route. Which apartment buildings are on their list remains a mystery for now, and whether we could possibly share an apartment with her also remains unknown. We think at this point though the best solution may be for Brett and me to rent our own, separate apartment but in the same building/complex as hers, if possible. We’re going to purchase a car online before we arrive but otherwise we have no idea about anything else. We plan to arrive in Nashville mid-July and hopefully by then will know enough to secure an apartment and get started settling in.

This morning I am thinking about:

Scrubbed and clean, oiled and buffed. I wish I had taken a before shot – the table was a mess but cleaned up nicely!

  • What we accomplished last week: 1) We did our last Big Shop here last Tuesday, and ended up pretty much shopping for the rest of the month. Our usual mid-month shop will be very, very small, which is as it should be. 2) I stopped procrastinating and cleaned up a teak bathroom table we’ve been using in our shower so it’s ready for the yard sale. Lots of elbow grease was involved but it looks almost new again and I can double the asking price. I learned how to clean and restore natural (unfinished) wood pieces years ago rejuvenating old tansu in Japan. 3) We took two more bags of stuff to the thrift store, bought another suitcase there for $12, and finished packing YaYu’s things to take back with us to Pennsylvania. 4) We survived our first week living with patio furniture and an inflatable mattress and it wasn’t as awful as we thought it would be – the mattress is more comfortable than we had anticipated. 5) Brett and I moved up to Level II with our Spanish lessons. My high school Spanish and Brett’s background with Latin has helped us understand and acquire things far more quickly than we did with French. Also, Spanish pronunciation is far easier.
Besides all the delicious food we enjoyed on Wednesday, I had fun experiencing some new-to-me locations on our hike. This is Nawiliwili Harbor in Lihue, where the big cruise ships dock. The dark mountain in the the middle background is Haupu (Black Mountain) – we usually only see the other side of it.
  • Good things that happened: 1) We had a wonderful anniversary celebration this year even though we had to make changes to our original dining plans and ended up going a bit over budget. 2) Brett’s sister asked if she could join us for a week or two when we are in Mexico – yes! 3) We watched the Academy Award winning movie Coda on Thursday evening – it was sublime. 4) Brett and I both got our second COVID boosters on Friday, so along with masks and plenty of hand sanitizer we’re as prepared as we can possibly be for avoiding the virus during our upcoming travels.
We treated ourselves with one last trip to Lappert’s Ice Cream after getting our second COVID booster.
  • Ways we saved: 1) Even though we bought food for the entire month, we stayed under our bi-monthly food budget. We just don’t need much these days. 2) We added an additional $5.39 to our sandwich fund and are about set for meals during our final week in the apartment. 3) Although we went over budget a bit on Wednesday, we felt we got very good value (food and experience) for what we spent so no regrets.
The sunset views alone made our meal at The Beach House worth the expense
  • Looking forward to next week: 1) I have an appointment to get my hair cut on Thursday morning with a stylist who specializes in curly hair! My hair’s getting long enough to drive me crazy so I’m excited to get it shortened and shaped up. 2) The weather didn’t cooperate for any beach days this past week, so we’re once again hoping for better weather this coming week.

Other than selling our car, we are finally done with our local Buy & Sell. We listed our last item this past week, a rug, and got several requests for it over the span of three days . . . but not one person followed up, including a woman who said she was coming right over to get it and then never showed up. We were just going to roll up the rug and donate it to the Habitat for Humanity thrift store on Friday rather than deal further with Buy & Sell, but just before I took the ad down another woman contacted me, asked if the rug was still available, and she did come right over and buy it! The car will be listed for sale toward the end of this week, and the yard sale will be held the weekend before we move out.

That’s all for this week! Good things happened, much was accomplished, books were read, and good food was eaten. I hope it was as good for everyone else as it was for us and that you all are looking forward to the week coming up as much as we are.


12 thoughts on “Sunday Morning 4/3/2022: One More Month To Go

  1. So exciting! I am waiting with anticipation your Mexico trip and the graduation!


    1. If I’m excited about our move to Nashville, I’m super excited about heading to Mexico for a couple of months! The graduation will be a big occasion as well – Meiling and WenYu are joining us for a couple of days, but for Brett and I it will be the culmination of child-raising. Never thought back in the day that we’d be seeing four kids through college.


  2. Happy Anniversary, 43 looks good on both of you!
    It seems like everything is moving along more or less as planned, but you’re getting close to leaving the island. I, personally, will miss your beautiful pictures of the island and the lush landscape. So there is a little bit of sadness there.
    On a practical note, Subaru is a solid choice, we’ve had a Forester for 12 years, and besides routine maintenance (oil change and brakes check) we had no other issues with it.


    1. Thanks, Niculina! Things are moving along, although right now it sort of seems as if everything is at a standstill. Once we get our car listed at the end of the week things will start moving again, and once things are firmed up for our DIL we’ll get busy with our future move.

      Our first car was a Subaru (they were so tiny and ugly back then!) and we’ve talked about owning another for years for the reasons you state – little maintenance, very dependable. We want AWD for those New England winters.


  3. It’s hard to believe that your life in Hawaii is coming to a conclusion. Your DIL’s posting to Nashville – I was curious as to why Japan would have a consulate there but google tells me there are over 8,000 Japanese citizens and 300 Japanese businesses in the Nashville area. I never would have expected that so I’ve learnt something new. I guess the sharp u-turn in plans has shaken up your budget in so many ways. I hope you have been able to get refunds from flights and accommodations you had booked.


    1. It’s hard for us to believe as well, Vicky. We love it here, but we also eager to get on with our lives and travels, or at least a relocation to Nashville! We will take a hit on our reservations in the UK and the flight over – all are non-refundable, but our son is going to reimburse us for all travel forfeitures. He knows if not, we would not be able to afford the relocation.


  4. Those sunsets are amazing! I had a Subaru Outback about 20 years ago and loved it. It lasted quite a long time and will serve you well in New England. I drive very little now because I work from home most of the time, so I have very low mileage on my current car (not a Subaru) so I won’t be car shopping for a long time, but I want to get a Subaru again next. I hope you get a lot more beach days before you leave. I also hope your DIL’s job gives her more info on the apartment situation so you’ll be able to plan ahead.


    1. Sunsets have really been few and far between this year, so last Monday’s was a real treat. We’re hoping for at least one more spectacular one before we go.

      We’ve owned a Subaru and the Outback has everything we want for both a long road trip and/or settling in New England. They are priced very well for what you get.

      We’re not expecting to hear anything about apartments, dates, etc. until after we’ve left Kaua’i and are in Mexico. It reminds me of when Brett was in the navy and he’s submitted his requests for a new duty station – we knew were were going somewhere, but when orders would arrive was a complete unknown. It was maddening – we couldn’t plan anything!


  5. Your teak work is amazing. You would be a great crew member on our last sailboat. 😉 It looks like new!

    Everyone I know with a Subaru loves them….great choice. My SIL just bought one last weekend.


    1. I’ve never worked with teak before but am very pleased with how it turned out. Lots of scrubbing and rubbing, the the change was remarkable and worth the effort (now I hope someone will buy the little table).

      A Subaru was my/our first car and we’ve always liked them, so they had an advantage going in to our decision.


  6. We are a two Subaru family – we have a 10 year old Outback and newer Forester. We love both of them, although I personally like the fact that the Forester sits up a little higher. We’ve done a little off-roading in the Outback and it handled some scary places beautifully (exploring water falls in NC) as well as just everyday driving. And they do well in the snow/rain, etc. But then, having already owned one, you already know all of that! LOL!


    1. We like the Forester as well, but couldn’t find one available at the one Subaru dealer in Nashville. I suppose it we ordered one they would find one in the area. I like the idea of it being a bit higher than the Outback, but frankly like the size of the Outback. We’ve got a few months to figure it out though.


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