We picked up our alien registration cards yesterday. Up until then, Ana was the only one of the three of us allowed to live in Japan. Whew! If we had been denied, I’m not sure how she would have made it on her own, so it’s really good that things worked out!

We had an interesting experience today. Japan has national health care, and people are encouraged to visit a health center once a year for a general check up. Wes and I had ours done today in what was basically an open air building in a back alley off the beaten path. While I was waiting in line to fill up a cup over a squatty potty (for the record, I’m amazed that the eighty year old women in line with me were able to accomplish this gymnastic feat!), Ana started to cry on Wes. Ten minutes later, she was screaming, and a line of Japanese grandmothers rushed Wes and started passing the baby back and forth in an effort to calm her down. While I was watching helplessly, the ladies in line started to offer suggestions. “Baby hungry!” “Baby wet!” “Baby no like daddy!” The crying got so bad that the clinicians cleared out a back office to serve as a changing room. I was finally able to get to her and calm her down… for a while at least.

Anyway, Wes and I both had blood pressure checks, weight checks, doctor check-ups, and blood work done. They also had the resources (again, in a back alley off the beaten path!) to do EKGs on us, chest x-rays, and bone density tests. (We opted not to do those since we’re only in our twenties and aren’t suffering from heart disease or osteoporosis!) We were SO impressed at how thorough the health check-ups here are… if not a little surprised at how unequipped the location looked at first.

We also found a park where the baby and I can go jogging! I thought Okinawa would be like Swakopmund, where I could leave my front door and safely jog all over the city, but I would likely get hit by a car as soon as I left my driveway with the busy traffic and narrow, narrow streets. So, yea for finding a park!

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