High school – commute
To get to my high school before the morning meeting started at 8:15 am, I had to get on 6:30 am-train. To get to the nearest station, my mother had to drive me. My father didn’t contribute to his daughters’ life necessities other than financial. He slept till 7 am, made my mother or grandmother serve him breakfast and tea, smoked a cigarette, and drove 10 minutes to work. My mother woke up at 5 am, cooked and packed three bento boxes, did laundry, cleaned, put on make-up, drove me to the station, and left for work before my father.
I woke at 5:30 am so I could leave by 6:15 am. The train stopped every station and didn’t arrive in the city until 7:30 am. It was a 20+ minutes walk from the station to school, and some people bicycled, and others walked. Daily commute time was almost 1.5 hours one way, 3 hours a day. I managed ok for the first several months. Kei was with me, and we picked up Izumi on the way to school. Izumi’s parents lived away, and her grandparents didn’t have a car to drive her to the station every morning, so she had rented an apartment in the city to live by herself.
There were nine classes per grade, and we were all separated into different classes. We walked together in the morning until our lives started to disentangle by the end of the first year. Not only each of us made new friends, but also our paths forked into three different directions.