The boys seem to like their new/substitute/temporary school (it's really hard to categorize anything these days) and are making friends and generally enjoying the enormous playground and all the space and freedom of movement that suburban living provides. I am finding it sorta nice myself. It's easy going. A bagel and cup of coffee at the Pelham Bakery on Fifth Ave. costs $1.80. I can find my favorite Burt's Bees lip balm at the local CVS for about a third of what I paid for one at the fancy international supermarket in Tokyo. And of course my parents and grandparents and brothers and a whole herd of nieces and nephews live in the area, so I am getting a major much-needed dose of extended family time. I am a rather lonely pedestrian on my walks through town and even to school, but that's ok.
Just received an email with the latest U.S. Department of State Travel Warning for Japan, dated March 31, 2011, which says that American citizens should "defer non-essential travel" to Tokyo and Yokohama (and surrounding regions) plus 15 of the country's prefectures. I guess it's not essential for me to go to Tokyo right now, even though BST is supposed to reopen on Monday (it will close again five days later for a previously scheduled two-week Easter break). But it is essential that I get back there eventually. Or is it? Today, the answer to that is yes.