Last Kanji Showdown before Departure…

When the apex of your kanji reading abilities is being able to handle automated furikomi (money transfers) on your own (the mere action of paying my monthly rent, fearlessly navigating 50 screens of instructions on the local ATM machine, is enough to bring me a deep feeling of achievement for the remainder of the day), it is dangerously easy to fool yourself into thinking you can actually read some of this barbaric language.

Lucky for me, just when it might happen, something comes up to remind me that I’d still get my ass kicked at japanese crosswords by any 5-year old.

Even if that reminder is some utterly stupid technical detail of tear-inducing banality. The fact that it resulted in the waste of a complete afternoon and nearly failing to secure my plane ticket in time for my departure, sure helped giving it due attention.

For those of you wondering, just note that Sumitomo Trust (住友信託) and Sumitomo Mitsui (三井住友) most definitely aren’t the same bank. And moreover: Sumitomo Mitsui is spelled freaking backward in Japanese (Mitsui first), thus appearing under the マ (‘ma’ and other ‘m’ sounds) section, not the サ (‘sa’ and other ‘s’ sounds) section. As such, even if 住友信託 is the only bank appearing under that section and your brain tells you it looks close enough to be the bank you are supposed to make your transfer to, believe me: It’s not.

Well, all that to say that I’ll be off the island from the end of this week until the end of next month. Please feed the Godzilla when I’m away and take him out for a bit of city-stomping at least once a week, his cans are in the top left shelf in the cupboard. Rie is taking care of the garden and the cats.

bipppu no ato ni, messeiji wo rekohdo shite kudasai…



  1. Oh believe me, I know.
    Problem is: 1) to get a card, you need to complete a transfer at least once. Which makes sense for rent, but hardly to pay for a plane ticket… 2) Banks give out these cards, combini ATMs don’t…

    Oh well, I’m not gonna complain: it’s still nice enough having the service available in any of the three zillions combinis spread over Tokyo…

  2. I can totally relate about the first time completing a furikomi on your own… that feeling of accomplishment mixed with a bit of surprise that you didn’t screw it up, plus a small tinge of insecurity because maybe you did.

    Of course, these days I just do them all online, which is a far more pleasant (or perhaps less painful) experience.

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