Thanks for the warm welcome. Everyone seems very friendly
@ mollyanne - I did not know ikigai
so thanks for teaching me a new word! The vast majority of Japanese seem to hold work as their reason d'etre.
@ spork - I am a rice cooker geek. Got a new one a few months ago. It is the bomb! Zojirushi of course, Micom with Induction Heating and it only cost me 13,000 yen. I found an interesting recipe on a site this morning for cashew and rasin rice. Might try that tomorrow but tonight it is my version of jambalaya.