05/02/2005: "Didn't want to be late, of course"
It's May; how time flies. Cherry blossoms went pretty quickly and now trees are covered with bright new greens everywhere. We had pretty busy April, and I'm looking forward to making a lot more niku jagas, curries, and spicy tuna bowls. My neighbor Diana started working for me this week. After Daisuke and Sho leave this month, we'll be all girl crew for a while.
I had a ill-fated trip to Ikea this afternoon. I recently joined Zipcar, which is quite well-designed service that you can rent cars in your neighborhood by the hour. So I rented a car for a few hours, and drove out to Elizabeth, NJ. But there was a fire engine blocking the only road to Ikea, and they told me to go to the mall and kill some time because there was some sort of emergency, some wire that you can get electricuted with in the roadway they need to clear up. From there I eneded up wasting whole hour by going to the mall, driving around to find a parking spot, walking in the building filled with all kinds of Jersey people to use a restroom, and driving back to Ikea. Finally then walked through Ikea, picked up shelves and other goodies. Back on the road, it was pretty smooth until of course I was back to Holland Tunnel. I wouldn't have been late if there weren't that congestion which seems to be always there at the tunnel. Maybe I wasn't late if I didn't stop for gas which I was supposed to if the tank was only 1/4 full, which it was when I got the car. The traffic was only inching toward the tunnel at the last 1/4 mile stretch. I was furious and upset. I'm Japanese and I don't like to be late. I didn't want to pay the 25 dollar penalty. You heard about the train crash in Japan, right? The driver was speeding because he was 90 seconds behind the schedule. I know it's ridiculous but we are punctual people and we don't like to be late. I panted and cursed but the traffic didn't move. I knew the best route to fly across town once I was back to Manhattan, but I was late for 10 minutes. Oh, well. I said it was better than crashing and killing 100 people. I'm often late these days to open up the restaurant, but otherwise I'm quite punctual. One time my friends Orly and Michelle came to cheer me for NYC marathon. I instructed them to wait for me in the Central Park, near 72nd Street transverse, and I'd be running by, say, at 2:10. It was a cold day, and Michelle was bitching as usual that it was so cold and I could be late, and she didn't want to wait around too long in the cold. It was just about 2:10 when they got to their spot, when I came by, saw them and waved. Orly turned to Michelle and said, "I told you she'll be on time. She's Japanese!"