Merry belated Christmas to those of you who celebrated it. December has been a very busy month for us both, with business travel around Japan, strange schedules, and the usual year end festivities and stress.
David took a short trip up to Sendai to participate in the annual Yama Sakura exercise going on there. We celebrated our anniversary in the first week of the month, spending the weekend up at the New Sanno Hotel in Tokyo. When going there recently, we've begun to treat it like our own personal cruise ship. Once we check in, we spend the entire time there, enjoying the surroundings, eating at the exclusive Wellington's restaurant (usually the 5 course meal...the best deal in town for a nice restaurant), and relaxing with a good book over cups of good coffee.
A few days after our anniversary, Melody had her first trip to Okinawa for a few days, while David went back up to Sendai.
The week after we all got back home, David was promoted to lieutenant colonel. The list was released last summer, and his number finally came up. The ceremony was nice and brief, the way he wanted it to be, and they held the promotion party at the New Sanno the next weekend. It was a good reunion with old friends like Toshi and Harumi, as well as the new boss, Colonel Whitworth and friends from work.
On into the Christmas holidays then...As usual, we stressed about sending out Christmas gifts to friends and family, and relied heavily on on-line shopping to get everything done. While it will be nice to be back in the US next year, we won't have the excuse of being in Japan any more, and will have more impetus to be on time.
The holiday schedule continues for another week or so, and we're enjoying the relaxed schedule while getting ready for the big push that awaits us in the next few months. We depart in April, and will both be busy with additional trips for work, packout, and the myriad tasks to get closed out here and ready to go back to the US. Neither of us want to leave Japan, and it will be a terribly sad time when it comes. But, that's the life we've chosen...the semi-nomadic life of the military. We'll adapt to our new life when it comes. We'll just start the new chapter in Texas.
In the meantime, though, we're still here...Sand, Tsunamis, and will try to get through a few more adventures before we leave.