Today I went to the post office. Twice. With two different things to mail. My packages were rejected.
I've had it to just about up to HERE with the Japanese post office. I couldn't send my kotatsu because it was too big. I couldn't send my box of clothes / other things home because the box was too big. Here's the thing with this one, though. It's the SAME box that my Mom sent me my stuff in back in October. She sent it through USPS, which means that the Japanese post office accepted it and brought it to my door. But, for some reason, I can't ship the same box OUT of the country. It's in Zara's car until we can go to the "UPS of Japan" tomorrow. They (UPS) were willing to ship my kotatsu, btw, but only by airmail, which would have cost 800 bucks (no thanks).
What's the motto? "Everything in Japan is smaller, so your packages have to be, too"??? I have to get this stuff sent home one way or another, people. And I don't want to have to pack it in a bunch of tiny boxes.
The second package that got rejected today was my computer battery. I HAVE to send it home because Dell is sending me a new one (it's still under warranty). In order to not be charged, you have to send the old one into them within 10 days of receiving the new one. That's fine...it beats paying 200 bucks for a new battery, right? But, what if I literally can't get the battery back to the States in less than a month? They told me that because the battery has acid in it, they can't send it via air mail and that it HAS to be ground shipped...which takes a month. Luckily the people at this post office were very friendly and extremely helpful, but now I'm in a huge predicament. I'm emailing Dell with my situation. I hope they let it come late. I'll ship it directly to them if they let me.
Oye... Beware the Japanese postal system when shipping stuff internationally!!
On another note, I went to a clinic for the first time today. I've had an itchy (skin peeling) toe for a while, but Tuesday was especially itchy -- and then I danced on it for 2 hours -- then it just hurt. Then this morning I see these weird *bumps under my skin* rash on my arm. Time to go to the doctor.
So, without help from anyone, I find a doctor that speaks English. Turns out it wouldn't have mattered either way because I was able to hold my own -- and I spoke mostly to the nurse anyway, which was in Japanese. Anyways, he says I have 手足口病 or "hand leg mouth" sickness. He said that it just has to run it's course. Luckily the rash doesn't hurt or itch because apparently this is going to spread to my mouth? (I really hope it doesn't!!!) Gross, I know -- but it's not contagious at this point. He gave me a prescription for some medicine to put on my foot once a day. This will help kill the fungal infection that's going on. Nothing to worry about, thank goodness.
But, my visit to the clinic went really well. Everyone was nice and not afraid of me -- and very relieved when they found out I could speak Japanese. It cost me less than 10 bucks to see the doctor and about 5 dollars to get my medicine -- and the whole process took less than an hour. There is a drug store literally right across the street and the guy gave me my medicine and explained it to me in less than 5 minutes. Totally painless. I wish it were this easy at home...
In conclusion, everything turned out ok today (minus NOT having my stuff in the mail). I went to UniQlo and found some clothes that fit perfectly -- I had Chinese food with Meg and Zara -- got 31% off ice cream from 31 flavors -- and enjoyed a nice walk in the cool evening weather.
And on another note, I have officially crossed the NATTO line. I love it. I had 2 containers of it today. What am I going to do when I leave here?! Oh natto, with your smelly fermented goodness... :)