Our Journey Begins

    From Austin to Houston

    • Vote.
    • ERS takes us to Austin Mueller Airport.
      I can’t take my Mac because it’s over the luggage weight limit.
    • Breakfast.
    • Departure party at the Consulate General’s House


    I’ve bought the largest suitcases I could find with wheels, one for each of us. Clothes, books, and toys to last us a year. Well, I did have ERS ship winter clothes separately.

    I had intended to take my Mac512k. Portable right? But it put my luggage over the weight limit or something. Maybe I was allowed only one carryon. Whatever the case, at the last minute, I had to give it back to ERS. I was so frustrated not having my computer with which to write, that the first expensive purchase I made after getting my first paycheck was a Japanese word processor.

    My carry-on is a soft-sided black leather briefcase filled with writing supplies. JQS is impressed the next day when someone wished that they had a stamp so she could send a postcard from DFW, that I open up my briefcase and offer her one.

    JQS brought a large plush lion (Lyle). I would think he had a backpack, too. He had one for school in the States. But I don’t remember him with one.

    Postmark: Houston

    Letter: Sunday July 30, 1989 3:AM Houston TX USA

    Party at the Consulate-General’s House

    […]The first leg of our adventure is complete and all is well. We’ve met the other 25 participants from this area, went to an orientation, and had dinner at the consulate-general’s house (which was reminiscent of lifestyles of the rich and famous — when our little bus drove into the neighborhood of the consulate-general, a hush came over us as we stared out the window in awe.)

    The people in the program are diverse in background, gender, and ethnicity. Most have just graduated from college and most don’t speak Japanese. Their reasons for being here are similar to mine: a vague feeling that they ought to, not really knowing why.
    I am very happy. It’s really happening!