New York Stories

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Last month the kids and I had the chance to visit my home state and stay at an amazing beach-front house on Long Island, which is just about an hour east of Manhattan. It was like being in a peaceful oasis so close to the city. Too bad it was winter in New York at the time, but having this postcard view to wakimg_2611-01-01-01.jpge up to every morning was still pretty excellent. Fortunately there were some nice warm days that made it possible for the kids and I to take walks along the shore, play on the sand and pick up seashells. We still enjoyed the winter season. The kids had fun playing in the snow.

Being back home was a nice break from our solitude in Tokyo since all my family and friends live within the five boroughs and its surrounding towns. Even timg_2526-01-01-01.jpghough we didn’t do anything really extraordinary it was nice being with friends and family or just staying up late watching tv dramas that I can understand without needing to concentrate. It was great for the kids too, having family or friends to play with everyday. It was so stress-free and really like a holiday.
We made a few excursions to the city, but commuting with the kids on the trains was rather stressful. It’s pretty stressful in Tokyo as well, but NYC subways (and even the Long Island Railroad) are pretty dirty compared to the trains in Japan and I really hated it when the kids would climb on the seat and press close up against the windows. I must’ve looked like a maniac trying to babywipe any surface within my reach. At first Arisa seemed a bit nervous as we strolled along the busy streets. Perhaps it was so strange for her to see all the different faces and the bustling downtown streets. But Keiji seemed unaffected by the surroundings. Perhaps a part of his brain still has some of those places stored in his memory bank. I’d point to places where we’d once taken him and he’d say “Oh, that’s where mommy and daddy took Keiji baby?” “Yes, sweetie.” It was nice to be back for a while to soak in a bit of the old ‘hood.

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