Heading Off Into the Rising Sun
If you know our family in real life you have probably heard our big news, but for the one person out there who doesn’t know yet, we have some news. We are moving to Tokyo. I will get on a plane for Japan in 45 days and I have decided that the story leading up to the move has some merit. My hope is to get back into that blogging grove before I get over there so that I can share all the great adventures we’re having without having to dust off the writing cobwebs. We’ll see if it works. I’ve told the story a bunch of times, but looking over some writing from my last trip to Japan I was reminded that you lose details the further out you get form an event. I know I’ve probably already told you three separate times that we are moving to Japan, but this post is, as they say, for posterity. I will capture events here as best I know them and if others involved see this and want to chime in don’t be shy in the comments. Let’s start at the beginning. A little over a year ago (May 15th 2014 to be exact) my wife forwarded me this job opening:
Seeking Lower Elementary & Middle School Teachers, The Montessori School of Tokyo Tokyo, Japan
The Montessori School of Tokyo (MST), is seeking to fill a position in a Lower Elementary classroom and for an experienced individual to guide the establishment of our Middle School programme. ….Detailed job descriptions are available upon request. For more information about MST, please visit our website atwww.montessorijapan.com
She wasn’t seriously looking to change schools, but I believe was doing that what-if game that is so easy with jobs posted on the internet. We both agreed that she had to at least apply. She did apply and very quickly found out that they were already moving forward with their Middle school program with someone filling in the position for 1 year temporarily. They were interested in her application and agreed they should talk again in the fall of 2014 when the position would be re-listed. This was when the what-if game sort of took over our lives. We both knew that Kira was immensely qualified for this job. She has a decade of Montessori teaching experience AND she had a hook – she went to high school in Japan. The fact that they went with an intermediate person for one year meant they hadn’t found anyone the previous year so it was not unreasonable for us to assume that in the fall she would be offered a job in Tokyo. It was still improbable that we would be moving to Japan, but not impossible. This meant a lot of conversations ending in phrases like, “unless we move to Japan (ha ha)”, “or we could be in Japan (ha ha)”, “WHEN we move to Japan (ha ha)”, but it was still what-if. An entire summer of what-if, but it was easy to forget about for weeks at a time and was really just an idea that crept into conversation every now and again.
Fall arrived and after waiting what we thought was an appropriate amount of time after school started Kira inquired when the position was going to be re-posted. I honestly don’t know if they ever posted it again or not, but after a few emails back and forth they set up a Skype interview between Kira and the head of school. From my perspective the interview went very well and the what-if became a very firm this-could-really-happen. I have already given away the ending, but we spent several more months not really knowing if they would officially offer the job, if we could afford (financially) to go if they did offer, or if we could afford (experientially) NOT to go. It was several months of limbo and lots of sentences still ended with, “when we move to Japan”, but the laughter was gone. By now we could picture ourselves going. Even so I think during the months between October and February when it was all being worked out we must have changed our minds about it being the right thing a dozen times. Luckily we ended on the positive. It helped that Kira figured out what we would need from the school to make it happen and they were able to agree to almost everything.
I know I’m leaving some details out of this story and really this only gets us to February, but I want to get this blog started up again. There is more to tell, but it can wait until tomorrow.
Kanji of the Day: 日本 にほん Nihon Japan