Random thoughts, comments, observations and general fluff from a random bint who left London at the end of September 2004 to embark on a new life and new adventures in Tokyo, land of the cute.... and is leaving mid-June 2010 - and counting!

Friday, November 05, 2004

Days Off

Tuesday night we had a `welcome party` thing. It involved some food and quite a bit of beer and hot saki. Great evening, and didn`t feel that drunk afterwards. On the way home I gave in, yet again to my fruit in jelly urge. As someone put it, it`s a rather odd thing to crave when you`ve been drinking, but hey.

Yesterday woke up with a headache :(

Now I`ve had more than my fair share of hangovers in the past and passionately hate people who claim to have never had one, but over the last couple of years alcohol can sometimes trigger off a headache in my that lasts rather a long time. The one I woke up with yesterday morning, I still haven`t completely shaken and it`s now the following evening. Just great!

It struck me the other day just how safe I feel here. I`m a Londoner who has also lived in Paris, but the Tokyo is in another league. I`ve not felt even slightly threatened once, and I`m not concerned about anyone rifling through my bag on the train, or knicking my mobile from my hand if I`m seen using it.... Maybe I just should have got back out of London a while ago.

It`s also struck me that I can either do things that I`d like to do, or get things done that need to be done. It`s humanly impossible to do both. Bit annoying that really.

Before I came out here, I was under the attitude that I didn`t want to spend all of my time here with other teachers. Funny how things change and how you long for real conversations with people who can relate to what you`re saying, isn`t it.

That said though, an old flatmate of mine from way back, a Japanese girl living in Tokyo, has finally picked up my emails and realised I`m here. Can`t wait to meet up with her again.

Forks are so daft. You pick food up with a fork and it falls off. Why doesn`t everyone just use chopsticks. It`s so much more civilised.

Yesterday I accidently played bike dominoes. My bike lives at the bottom of my apartment block next to a load of other bikes. I unlocked my bike yesterday, through my bag into the basket at the front and managed to, somehow, knock it slightly. It kind of toppled over, and toppled the ten bikes to the side of it. Oops. It WAS very funny though, and I`ve been waiting for it to happen for ages. The day before, I narrowly avoided walking into a bike (hey, I don`t always look where I`m going) - that WOULD have been embarrasing.

I went into a Subway sandwich shop. According to the t-shirts of the staff there, they are all `sandwich artists`. Gotta giggle...

Anyone remember the huge spider, `Maman`, that used to be in the Turbine Hall at the Tate Modern? I saw it yesterday. It`s now in Roppongi Hills, in Tokyo. Roppongi is known for hostess bars and prostitutes. Roppongi Hills has lots of designer shops and tall towers........

On the subject of hostess bars... hostesses in Tokyo chat to customers in bars, pour them drinks, light their cigarettes and sing karaoke with them. There`s a no touch policy. Apparantly. Sometimes the hostesses have to go out on `private dates` with the customers before taking them to the bar and they get bought dinners. That`s it. But I can`t get the sordid connotations out of my head. Yesterday I was talking with a few girls that get second incomes as hostesses, and this is what they told me. Choosing to be near drunken salarymen doesn`t appeal at all. Having to slap on a load of make up and be sweet and charming after a long day of working even less so. Each to their own I guess, although I think when I decide to get a second income it`ll be through private teaching and not hostessing. Anything is possible though, I guess.

What do you think? Doesn`t `hostess` and `hostess bar` have extremely sordid connotations??

I faxed off my internet application today. Should be a couple of weeks til I have it at home now!


Blogger Elspeth said...

I am loving this description of Japan, im curious as to why you feel safer? Is there less crime there? And I so want to try one of those jelly things!

1:54 pm

Blogger Jo said...

lol. buy some jelly. throw some fruit into a bowl. pour the jelly over it and wait for it to set!!!

why do i feel safer here? i have no idea. i guess partly the reputation it has here?

9:35 pm


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