A Supermassive Black Hole

… is where I’ve been hiding. Sorry blog readers! (of which maybe there’s like, 2)

More importantly, I swear that since I’ve been in Japan I’m permanently being followed by this said huge hole that thoroughly enjoys sucking up lots of things that I love and are important to me. So far objects claimed by the nondiscriminatory abyss have been:

  • The spare key to my apartment
  • One half of three favorite pairs of earrings from home
  • A sterling silver heart toe ring I got in India, which I’d only taken off a few times since 2005
  • My wallet, which held about 24,000 yen (close to 300 US dollars), my foreigner registration card, American credit card, American driver’s license, and maybe a dozen less important Japanese membership and point cards I’d been collecting over the past 10 months. I’d also had the wallet since high school, and thus it additionally held an immeasurable deal of sentimental value.

The last on the list has been the most recent, and possibly the most devastating due to the number of things the wallet contained and the huge pain in the ass it’s proving to replace my CA driver’s license from abroad. I wish I could entertain you with a good story of how it went missing, but the thing is, there is none. It was a super ordinary Saturday. I only used my wallet once that day, when I went out to lunch with a woman I tutor. I went for a run in the early evening and left my door unlocked (as is more common than not here). The next time I reached into my purse to pay for some midnight taco rice, my wallet was gone. I went home and turned my apartment and car inside out to no avail. Nor was it found or turned in at the restaurant I’d been at. Now, Japan is known to be just about the most honest, least crime-ridden society on earth—so although it’s definitely possible that someone stole my wallet, I’m really hesitant to believe that that is the explanation. Then there’s the part of me that clings to the shred of hope that it’s still somewhere it can be found (I was legit checking places like my freezer and closet storage where I haven’t ventured since I arrived). Because, seriously: if it wasn’t stolen… and I can’t find it anywhere it could possibly be… then where the hell did it go??

Into the vacuum of a void that follows me around and likes to eat my things.

But I do believe my supermassive black hole stalker has taught me a thing or two. First (and you’ve probably already said it): I need to keep a better eye on my shit. Second (and the real lesson to take away): the thing is that we lose things sometimes. Or they go missing. Or are taken from us. Maybe we were careful and maybe we weren’t. In any case, it happens. But over time, with every move I make to a new place, I’ve discovered how little my things mean to me really. In fact, the more I lose, the less they matter. The more I MOVE, the less it matters. Attachment to something is not the same as needing it. As long as I’m enjoying my life, and as long as my friends and family are out there somewhere, I know I’m going to be ok. And although the void has no thoughts or feelings, it’s fun to imagine: maybe my supermassive black hole stalker is actually a person who will use that money from my wallet, because s/he really needs it. Someone who will treasure my toe ring as much as I did for five years.

You have to look at things this way sometimes. Or at least I do.


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