The day I first visited
this place, having been invited to 'look it over'
with a view to purchasing it, I certainly wasn't
impressed when I walked up to the front door. As
you can see, it's just a 'standard issue' modern
Japanese home, with a totally unaesthetic design,
many glaring problems (poorly situated small
windows, etc.), and obviously shoddy construction.
But the man who had recommended it to us said
that it was 'special', and a few minutes after we
went inside, I understood why. From the front it
looks like just another two-story home, but if you
see it from the other side, you see that the two
stories actually sit on a large multi-story
The first level below the street has 12+ foot
ceilings, and this one room alone has more floor
area than the whole of the apartment in which I was
currently living. But there is yet another level
below that - not with a high ceiling, but with a
view over a small river that runs along the rear
side of the property. This is the room that
I saw could make a perfect workshop for my
Step out onto the balcony, and here's what you
see ... to the right ...
... and to the left ...
I have written in my newsletter about what came
next - how I ran to the bank the next morning to
try and arrange financing ... That was
successful, and as the year 2000 came to a close,
the deal was closed and the building became mine.