I usually try to get back to Canada every couple of years--keeps my mom happy, my wife and daughter enjoy the holiday, I get to hang out briefly with a couple of old friends, that sort of thing.
We decided a few months ago that maybe we wouldn't go this year, mainly because of schedule-related stuff, and partly because of the expense (it costs about twice as much to fly to Halifax and back as it did pre-9/11--there's the free market in action!). When the swine flu stuff came along it was basically icing on the let's-stay-in-Japan cake.
I confess that I've still, somewhat secretly, been toying with the idea of finding a way to go. Or at least I was until today. It seems that this week alone there have been 32 new cases of the (ahem) dreaded swine flu in Nova Scotia. That's pretty much put an end to any thought I had of making it back home this year.
Don't misunderstand. I'm not personally paranoid about catching the flu (and really, that's what we're talking about here, isn't it--the flu?). No, I'm worried about the hassle of coming back into Japan (a country with confirmed flu cases) from an area with confirmed flu cases.
If that sounds weird, well, that's just the way it is.