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iceberg sighted!

As fate would have it, my first apartment disaster ever happens when I’m in a foreign country whose language I barely speak. The short of it is that during the night, for no reason I discern, the hose connecting my washing machine to a faucet in the wall fell off, leaving the faucet blasting water. As I was asleep when this happened, I didn’t notice until far too late. My apartment partially flooded.

It’s an important partially. There are bare patches of floor which are minutely higher than other patches of floor; on one of those patches, by luck, sits the transformer which lets my computer run on Japan’s current. If the water were to have hit that before I woke up, I suspect that I would have been woken up by my computer exploding, then died when I put my feet in the puddle that was the floor.

As it is, I came out of this relatively unscathed. I’m fine, all my expensive electronics are fine, and so forth. The rack with my dress clothes was immediately adjacent to the washing machine, and the faucet is (for some reason) angled toward that rack. Some of my dress clothes are soaked. It could have been worse, though; had I hung things in the other direction, the faucet would have been spraying any number of dry-clean-only sweaters and jackets.

Still, I can’t take a step in my apartment without making a splash, and I suspect that the tatami mats will need to be replaced. At least, I can’t imagine hanging them out to dry.

This is going to be a miserable night, though. Thanks to the Japanese custom of using futons, which sit on the floor, I have nothing dry to sleep on or in right now.

At least I finally got around to unpacking the bulk of my clothing last night; if I hadn’t, they would all still be sitting in the duffels on the floor. The chances of something getting irreparibly damaged would have been significantly higher…

Still, I kind of wish this had happened in a country where I could find a 24-hour plumber in a phone book and have them remove the standing water from the floor. I made some attempts at baling it out with a dust bucket, which was the only remotely suitable implement available, and it just wasn’t working. I have no idea when this will get back to normal.

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