It took at least six months. Probably more, to be honest. But I took it a little at a time, trying not to overwhelm myself. A bit here, a bit there. Maybe three bits one night, but no more for the next week.
And finally, it's all gone. Not a single cup, bar, rope, or piece.
And by it, I mean candy.
You see, one of the things I often talk about missing is candy. Sure, there are candies and sweets here in Japan that are quite delicious, but when that homesickness moves back in, there's nothing like the sweet taste of Americana to bring about the cure.
So my friends and family bring me candy. I've had Reese's cups, York patties, Twix bars, peanut butter MnMs, Twizzlers, Milky Ways, Skittles... all that really unhealthy stuff that are really expensive or tough to find here.
And it's always too much. I swear I got enough candy to please a really nice neighborhood on Halloween.
Tonight - literally two minutes before I began to write this article - I finally finished off the last pieces. For those of you who were wondering, there was a yatsuhashi-flavored Kit Kat bar, a York peppermint patty, and a Reese's peanut butter cup. They were all quite good, and my candy space is now empty!
So while I appreciate all my family and friends have sent my way, I am now requesting that no more be sent. I can do without the junk food and tooth decay it brings. I can find chocolates here, and while York and Reese's and Skittles don't really exist in this land, I'll find something else for that craving if I really need it.
Likewise, I've found replacements or sources for a lot of stuff that is tough to find. Like deodorant - it's not cheap but I can get some from Amazon. And I've found good US-style toothpaste at a good price. And taco seasoning at the grocery store!
Granted, I eat plenty of Japanese stuff, too. Or stuff Japanese people eat. Italian is pretty popular here, and I've found that Pizza Hut serves up some pretty good pies (especially compared to American Pizza Hut stores).
Meanwhile, I realize that it's been almost two months since my last post here, and I want you all to know that things are going pretty well. I haven't done much sightseeing lately, partly due to a lack of motivation, partly due to a lack of new things to see in the area, and partly due to a lack of energy. The last several months have been very busy at work, so I've been getting home later, getting to work a little earlier sometimes, and just being too tired to do much.
But in a couple weeks, I'm off to Matsushima and Aizu-Wakamatsu, two beautiful travel destinations near Fukushima (but not too near Fukushima). I planned on going to Aizu early last year, but something came up and I had to abandon the plans. And in September, I'm going to Sapporo and the rest of Hokkaido. Both trips are very exciting and will result in the reaching of one of my goals here in Japan: to see a baseball game at every NPB home stadium!
As always, I hope to write again soon, and it seems like the past few days I've had more energy and time for writing. So who knows, maybe I'll get something up again tomorrow! (Just don't hold your breath...)