And then there was day 28...

By the end of our second week in Japan, we had bought a new car (to be picked up in three weeks), secured a loaner car in the interim, received our new cell phones, and gotten the Internet hooked up to our house. We were feeling pretty good about our ability to navigate within the Japanese culture.

Two weeks later, we got a phone call telling us that the car would be ready ahead of schedule. We still didn't have our insurance set up yet—car insurance is another lengthy and particular process…

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