The new place was a corner room of an old apartment building. The view from the balcony was the other apartment across the street. The rent doubled, but the relief beat the financial anxiety. I loaded my belongings to my car and drove back and forth from Judy’s place several times.
The idea of owning furniture dreaded me. I had rented furnished rooms in the past, ever since I left Japan in 2005.
In Tokyo, I lived by myself the first year and the last year, and with my sister in between. By the time my sister married a man who agreed to move in with her parents, I had enough money to move to a studio apartment and furnish it with carefully selected furniture. I loved the sense of independence and freedom after several years of compromised living conditions under my sister’s control. I stopped going out so often as I previously had done and spent more time at home.
A week to my moving date, however, a talk arose about the possibility of me relocating to Germany. The discussion and the arrangement took a whole year, but my one-year-old furniture was sent to my parents and relatives.
In the next four years, I’d move four times, including two across international borders. By the fourth move in 2009, I had resigned myself form the hope that I’d someday own furniture. I’d tell people I lived like a nomad as if that was a lifestyle choice I took pride in, but that was just another lie I told to make my life sound appealing.