Month: September 2008

New apartment snaps

Here’s two views of the new apartment. From the bedroom facing out to the living room, balcony and view.

And from the balcony looking into the living room and bedroom. Note the slide Japanese doors and tatami mats. It’s wonderfully old-style.

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We got the keys!

We signed the lease today, and have the keys to our new apartment in Nakano. It’s a tiny apartment on the top floor, with new tatami floors, a good layout, a narrow but long balcony, and an amazing south-facing city view.

I’ll post some photos when we go back tomorrow. Moving day is Saturday. Thanks, otoosan!

The apartment comes bare. Today we found a lovely four-year-old refrigerator (it’s pink!), and we’re going to look for a used stove, too. The in-laws have given us an antique light fixture, some tables and a fan.

At Muji’s new Shinjuku cafeteria

Muji’s opened a new cafeteria in Shinjuku. Incredibly chic, with lots of chunky oak on the walls, gorgeous furniture, chandeliers made of wine glasses, and many options for mixing and matching lunch dishes. We had 2 hot dishes + 2 cold dishes.

Lots of young mothers and babies at weekday lunch time; husband reminded me that the super-cute babies grow up to become teens. Way to pee on my parade!

Making a flower pot

Feeling a little down this week, I decided that I’d restart my ceramics study at Shiho with the wonderfully gracious in-laws. My first project is a flower pot for the new apartment. I am going with something fairly simple, a straight cyclinder with 3 feet. Okaasan suggested a white glaze on top of black clay.

I’ll try to document the 6 stages on the blog. The first is Form, which involves creating a flat base, and then adding about eight rope-shapes one-by-one, and smoothing everything together. Mine was a bit uneven (see above), but otoosan sensei straightened it up!

Six stages for simple pottery

1. 成形 Form (“seikei”)

2. 削る Sharpen (“kezuru”)

3. 乾燥   Drying (“kansou”)

4. 素焼き Biscuit frying (“suyaki”)

5. 釉がけ Glazing (“yuugake”)

6. 窯焚き Firing (“kamataki”)

Muji rice cooker, from “sayonara” sale

Thanks to Davie-san and Craigslist Tokyo, I just picked up a lighly used, second hand Muji rice cooker. It’s the first appliance for our new apartment. Move-in date is Sept 27.

Davie-san tipped me off to “sayonara” sales by x-pats leaving Japan as a source of good deals. And Craigslist made the recycle love possible. Pretty high fashion, no?