One thing about living in Japan that is different from New Zealand is the weather forecasts. There is a "famous" story about my husband going to New Zealand for the first time and staring out the window at a beautiful blue sky at 3pm and asking where the rain was. Apparently he had seen on the forecast that it was due to rain at 3pm.... Of course for those who live in New Zealand you will know that forecasting there is never that accurate. However in Japan it is often very accurate - down to the minute in some cases. One thing they haven't managed to perfect though is the forecasting of typhoons. It is currently typhoon season here and we were due to be hit by a really bad one last night. This meant that I had to tidy up everything that could possibly be blown away outside in preparation. Phone lists were handed out at school to inform us of who we had to ring in the case of school being cancelled etc. and then.... the typhoon took off on a completely different route and missed us completely. We hardly even got a thimble full of rain. I guess at least the garden area was tidied up a bit and the almost completed deck managed to get its first layer of paint. Nothing like being forced into action!