It only took me about 2.5 months to figure this one out...
1st, you find an empty spot
and back in (if you don't know how to back into a parking spot, you will learn real fast once you get here...luckily I almost always backed in to spots in the States, and now that we have a little match box car, it's a breeze for me!)
next this little bar pops up (it is delayed about 10 minutes...that took me a while to figure out!) to keep you from driving away
when you're ready to leave, you push the button that matches your spot number
and then the screen tells you how much you owe (it's hard to tell, but today I paid 100 Yen, or about $1.25 to park) and you put your coins into the slot (some take bills but this one does not)
and the bar drops down
and you drive away, happy that you've conquered another new challenge while living in a foreign country!
I still cannot believe we are so blessed to be living here. Every day is a new
challenge adventure that I am eternally grateful for! Many of my military followers have expressed to me that they are jealous of this opportunity (it is a VERY rare opportunity for someone in the Army, most of the military here are Air Force, Navy and Marines) and I thought I'd let everyone know that we did not get this assignment because my husband is an officer or by luck. In 2007 my husband VOLUNTEERED to go to war so that when he returned and finished some required training, he could choose his our next duty station. He had always dreamed that it would be Japan, but we honestly thought it would be partially his choice and partially the Army's choice (he was "guaranteed" one of his top 3 choices), but the Army held up their end of the deal. When Jason went in to meet with his branch manager after he finished school, he told the guy he wanted Japan and the guy's response was, "you volunteered for a deployment to be able to choose your duty station. we'll make it happen" and they did! That's how we ended up here. I'm so lucky to have such an amazingly brave husband!