That time of year again. Tax returns in two countries.
I get a typically jolly letter from the Ginowan Town Hall letting me know that the time has come.
Off I go the Town Hall and locate the place where you do tax stuff to try and find someone who can help me. The place is a large tent or marquee erected for the purpose. A smiling chap welcomes me and gives me a number. Five minutes later it is called. I show the lady my tiny Japanese government pension payments.
“No tax on pension, you pay no tax.”
That was it. Hooray, thanks Ginowan Town Hall folks!
Now to the USA. Some of you will remember that the person I love most is Elena who has helped me with filing my tax declaration for the last couple of years.
In previous years the process was done face to face but the idea of flying back to San Francisco just to do my taxes was terrifying. No worries says Elena, I can do it all remotely. She does. After a couple of days I get this email.
In fact life is not wonderful. On Thursday I noticed that one of my top right molars was loose. By Friday morning it was very loose, super painful and the right side of my face is now grotesquely swollen. Off to the dentist where they examine, Xray and declare that my jaw bone is diseased. Extract! They give me antibiotics and painkillers and set an appointment for the extraction on Tuesday. This gives them time to practice. The whole deal with medication cost me 560 yen.
Anyway, things are bad. The tooth is now very mobile and I would not be surprised if it came out on its own before Tuesday. Despite medication, it is very tender and it is difficult to eat anything solid. I am surprised how quickly all this happened. On Wednesday there were no symptoms and nothing happened to the tooth or jaw to provoke this condition. Maybe the rest of my teeth will spontaneously drop out. Scurvy?
I decide to make my Mother’s clootie dumpling.
I need a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda for the recipe. I go to Amazon Japan and buy a bag. I did not look carefully at the size of the bag I ordered. A couple of days later a huge 4.7 kilo bag arrived. Does anyone want some?