Okay so there isn't a Harry Potter part I post, that's because I was too tired to bother, so here they are together!
We finally got to the movie theater after much hand-wringing on Tuesday, and a completely failed attempt on Wednesday.
We have a picture theatre in Nakatsu, but it only has two screens, not enough to warrant showing the English/Japanese subtitled version of Harry Potter, so we had to go out of town to see it. So on Wednesday we drove all the way to Riverwalk in Kokura, which took nearly two hours, plus about 20 minutes waiting for a parking space to clear, only to find out that the session had sold out!
Have you ever found yourself utterly MAD angry pissed off and there is no-one you can blame it on, or even try to blame it on? Frustrating! I toyed briefly with the notion of blaming Kanji for being reluctant to watch Erica for too long, but I had to concede that I also didn't really want to go to the next session from 6-9, getting home at 11pm.
I should add that Kanji was standing right next to us. For some reason I don't think I will ever be able to fathom, he decided that it was much better for him and Erica to come to Kokura too. This is what we were discussing on Tuesday. I told him she'd go straight to sleep in the car, so he might as well put her in his car, drive round the block then go home. He seemed to think it was easier to drive for two hours to Kokura through some of the nastiest traffic in Kyushu, paying road tolls and parking fees, on the off-chance that IF she got upset I would be within reach. Of course, I'd be in the picture theatre most of the time...I started having horror visions of being called out of the movie to go tend to her, when the whole idea of leaving her with him was that I wouldn't have to leave the theatre to see to the baby.
His idea seemed to be that he'd walk around with her in the mall then go back in his car with her when she started to get grizzly. I still couldn't see why he needed to do that in Kokura and not back in Nakatsu, seeing as I'd be in the theatre. He said something random about him wanting to go to the big city too sometimes, so maybe he had some ideas of going to cool boy shops with her while we watched the movie. Okay then, family day out, but don't think I'm going to answer my phone in the theatre!
So when we were turned away at the cinema doors, it did turn into a family day at the mall. He bought us tickets for the next day's session at the same time, sheepishly suggesting that he stay home this time. Well I could have told you that 24 hours ago! I think he just starts to panic a bit. He hates it when she does have a crying fit, and calls out for Mum, but she basically doesn't do it all that much, I think he was worrying too much.
In the end she was perfectly happy with him all day on Thursday. We got back from the pictures, and after six hours away from me, she walked straight past me, saying 'Amy, where-a-you!', and gave her a hug!
To wrap up the night, we went to Aunty's house for an Obon feast. We arrived after 8 and were home by 10. The Yokomastus don't hold family parties like the Greenwoods do! We ate sushi and pizza and fried chicken and Japanese pickles and tofu and wakame soup. Aunty gave up and served non-alcohol beer after years of no-one drinking, since everyone had to drive/go back to work/etc. We lit incense at the grave, came home and set the sticks in the altar. Baachan did some impressive chanting, kind of like a Hail Mary, only in rapid formal Japanese.
Erica wriggled, then went back after everyone had left to ring the bell on the altar. I told her to stop, and thereafter, she went back several times, each time ringing the bell, then telling herself to stop. She spent the rest of the night toting around a stuffed cat as her baby, changing its nappy and putting it to sleep, and playing piggy-backs with Lena (Erica offered to be the back!) while Amy played the piano.
Tonight we're going obon dancing again!