Thursday, August 01, 2013

Happy Birthday Kitties

Thursday I got some work done, and some decluttering! A van-load of random crap and old rubbish from the shed to the rubbish centre. They have a nice system, a lot easier than the old dump in NZ! You drive in, and park your car on a weighing plate, and the lady (who I recognized as a mum from school) gives you a numbered card. You drive into the building (it's a massive incinerator) where there are bays for various recycled materials, and big metal conver-belt shutes for burnable and non-burnable items. The signs say you're supposed to do it yourself, but in reality a bunch of workers descend on you to make sure you get your trash into the right place - and bascially do it for you. I've learned to just grab something, walk aimlessly towards a shute and expect to be roughly told off and told where to take it. They end up doing most of it for me! Wood and furniture; garden refuse and bicycles are taken outside to the yard.

Then on the way out, you park on another weighing plate, and hand back your card, and they calculate how much you brought and charge you for it - my van-load was 600yen. It would be cheaper to sort everything nicely and get it out on the right day for municipal garbage collection, which is free, but it's nice to get a WHOLE lot of crap disappeared in one go.

I came home via the supermarket with sushi for the Cat Birthday Party! According to our Vet's estimate, they were about six weeks when we got them, so he gave them a birthdate of August 1st for the records, so we went with it! We bought them katsuoboshi - shaved, dried fish. Humans also eat this in Japan, sprinkled on dishes as a condiment or used as a stock, and the damn cats will drag the packets out of the cupboard if we leave the kitchen open at night and attack the packet until they can get it open. We got them a few other treats, and some cat toys that were a huge hit, even though they didn't work as advertised (they totally did NOT fly) - I think the cats thought they were real, they 'caught' them and dragged them around the room between their legs like lions, then tore them to bits overnight.

We went to the city pool in the afternoon. I hate the city pool. There are two pools, one VERY babyish, very shallow, just a big round concrete pool with no activities and no shade, and a very deep lap pool. The two pools are separated by a chain link fence, and pre-schoolers are not allowed in the big pool at all. Elementary school kids are, but only with a parent. You can only go in alone from junior high school age. Meanwhile, kindy kids cannot be in the kiddy pool alone. My kids are in junior high, elementary and kindergarten - see the problem?

So Lena ended up in the baby pool, except for when I took her to the big pool, during which time Erica had to just wait on the seats there. Luckily they were both enjoying their first swim of the season enough that they tolerated it... Lena wanted to go in the big pool, but declared the baby pool fun anyway. Erica waited patiently by the big pool, but felt sad that she wasn't big enough to go in. Roll on next year, when Amy and Lena can go to the big pool all by themselves, AND Erica can come in with me!

It's run by retirees, and is so crammed in by rules that no-one goes, meaning it makes no money, so it has to be run by retirees, and not proper life guards, who can't watch everyone properly, so they need parents to go, so no-one goes, and they make no money... in an endlessly downward spiralling loop. It's open in three 2.5hr sessions, with an hour between each session, and you have to pay for each session. Last straw? Being told my Amy that last time she was there with her friends, they saw a man on the castle next door training a camera into the changing room. I hate that pool.

After that, Thursday was just Thursday - English lesson, dance lesson, karate lesson. Same old same old.

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