OH MY GOD. YESTERDAY WAS A TRIAL! A trial of just how far I could stretch my patience. I’ll tell you the story at the end of this post, right after I show you something gorgeous that I found in my neighborhood!
I only noticed this gorgeous field of Sunflowers a few days ago, and ran down (right in the middle of the day, when it was scalding hot outside of course) to snap a few pictures:
According to the giant yellow bulletin board, these sunflowers are being grown in support of Touhoku and the devastation that was caused last year by the tsunami.
How they help, I’m not sure, because it’s written in cursivey Japanese, and my reading ability petered out after a few characters. I’ll spend more time figuring it out later, maybe… in any case, I thought that the tiny field of Sunflowers was gorgeous!
Sunflowers are actually one of my all-time favorite flowers. They are huge, and the yellow petals are so bright and cheerful. They’re the happy flower! (Plus, you can eat the seeds!)
Here are a few other pictures I snapped on the way back home. The sun was brutal!
And now for what happened yesterday…
Yesterday, I woke up with this red lump on my cheek. Not like the normal red lumps that everybody gets from time to time (pimples). No, this was a big, hard one. It had happened a week ago, but went away, so I’d thought that it was an insect bite or something. No. Not if it was like this, so I decided that it was a good time to go to the dermatologist and get it checked out.
I’ve never been to the dermatologist, but a friend recommended one who speaks english. The problems is that she is all the way in Roppongi. It’s a nice part of town, but it takes about 2 hours for me to get there. Hmmm, I debated internally about whether I should go or not.
While I debated, I decided that I might as well do my chores. Namely, paying rent, since this was 1. payday, and 2. rent due day.
No problem! It’s a 20 minute walk to my bank, which is near my station. The sun was searing hot, not a cloud in sight, and the humidity was somewhere around 100%, but I didn’t really mind. I was in a good mood, despite the auspicious start.
But it went downhill from there. On the way, I looked up dermatologists in my area. Hey, even if they spoke no english, at least they’d be easy to get to. I figured what the hey? It turns out that there was one right by my bank. Yay!
Only, on the site it said that they were closed for lunch from 12-3 every day. I looked at my watch. 12:10. D’oh. I thought about going tomorrow, but, oh. Closed Wednesdays. Can’t win. I figured that you can’t win them all, and finally reached the bank.
I got to the bank, thoroughly covered in a sheen of sweat, and put my atm card into the machine.
“This card is invalid,” it told me and spit the card back out.
I tried again, and it still didn’t work.
Well, that wouldn’t do! I needed to pay rent. I needed to go to the dermatologist or this lump-that-might-be-scary might make the side of my face fall off! ToT
So, I took the card to the bank teller, and after an hour of calling the head offices and such, she determined that the electronic chip in the card had gone bad, and they would replace it for free.
Well, that’s good! Oh, but it would take two weeks to get a replacement card, and in the meantime, I couldn’t withdraw cash. “Not even with my bank book?” I asked.
The answer was yes, but only if I went to one of the main branches.
After looking up the main branches, it turns out that the nearest one was at a station only ten minutes away. Great! I mean, it was a bit annoying, not in part because I only had about 500 yen in cash, and it would cost half of that to get there.
But okay. Off to the train, and to get money to pay bills! I arrived at the station a few minutes later.
There were notices flashing on the train schedules. “Train is stopped due to a human accident,” it said. Oh dear… yet another person had committed suicide by jumping in front of the train, and the only way to get places without a car, the trains, were stopped until it could be cleaned up.
I talked to the station attendant conveniently stationed at the gates, answering questions. He said that it would be running soon, he was sure. I wouldn’t have to wait long.
Encouraged, I went inside the gates and up the stairs to the platform.
It was packed with people. Wall-to-wall people, all of them dying in the heat (the stations are outside). Oh gosh… I just want to pay my rent. :(((
It took 40 minutes for the train to arrive, and I didn’t have any spare cash to buy water from the vending machine. It did finally come (local trains only), and I finally made it to the other station, to the bank, and after having to go through a long, arduous process to withdraw money without a working cash card, I finally had gotten cash and paid my rent.
The good thing is that it was three by then, and I went to the local dermatologist after all and she said that it was nothing exciting. All covered by insurance, and I got some cream and that’s the end.
I was going to go out and do some other fun things (Costco!), but I’d put myself through enough already, and I just headed home to watch The Secret Life of the American Teenager.
Today, I’m celebrating getting through yesterday by going to seeThe Dark Knight Rises. I think that I owe it to myself! I’m going to the station an hour early, just in case someone else thinks that it’s a good day to commit suicide by train. (Apparently yesterday was the second day in a row for this kind of delay)