Holy freaking crap! Someone found my blog by using the search terms “Yesterday as sung by Jim in Hiwasa.” That’s insane! There is indeed a town called Hiwasa in southeast Tokushima, the one with the hippie Indian restaurant, and the ALT there is named Jim. (We may start calling him Synthesis Jim now, though, thanks to this sign, spotted in his town.) But man, Lancaster, Ohio…natsukashii, yo. I lived in Ohio when I was little and all those names of places and things I remember from those days still have this neat nostalgic feel to them.
I met up with Kiet, Genna, and Genna’s friend Hitomi last night to see Spiderman 3 at the Cinema Sunshine in Kitajima and to work out logistics for a proposed Golden Week trip. The company was wonderful, as always, but the movie was…really bad. Oh, look, a conveniently-located open-air particle physics reactor in New York City, with conveniently placed verbose signage! Pointless dance routine and many moments that read like a really, really bad comic book! Clichés galore! I think we really loved ripping it apart in that love-hate sort of way, because at least two of us have strong scientific interests/backgrounds, and I know I for one get a perverse pleasure out of dissecting bad science in movies. At least it was Ladies’ Night, so three of us paid “only” ¥1000 for our tickets, and Kiet’s ticket was discounted because we caught the latest show.
It was pretty late when we wrapped up and we were all tired afterwards, so I crashed at Kiet’s again last night. We ran to Sunkus to get some drinks and snacks–he picked up a small bottle of Ureshii Wine for himself as a nightcap, and offered me a glass when we got back…and we ended up splitting the bottle and staying up almost till 4 AM, just talking about life and swapping gossip (of which there is always plenty). I’ve never hung out with him solo before, and I’m definitely glad I had the opportunity to do so, especially since we have a lot in common–very similar backgrounds and cultures, and he’s from Cleveland; my family lived in Akron/Uniontown/Medina for 5 years when I was little and I still have a lot of family scattered throughout Ohio.
Today we woke up slowly, showered, and waited for Genna, who biked over, and the three of us went out for brunch at Royal Host and discussed Golden Week logistics. We’re going south again tomorrow, the three of us and possibly Ange as well. We’re staying at Bessie’s place while she’s out, and hanging out on the beaches in Kochi. I’ve convinced them that the drive to Muroto is indeed worth it–well, Genna, anyway, who’s seen several of my photos–so hopefully we can work that in. Driving to and from Muroto is about 3-4 hours roundtrip, so maybe we can do that on our way back home or something.
I also spent a couple of hours this afternoon at Shizuko’s house, chatting and drinking tea with her, her daughter Rie, and, briefly, their granddaughter, who’s a student at my chuugakkou. I love that family–they’re all so open-minded and giving and wonderful. I offered today to make them a home-cooked Indian meal sometime, since I actually have achieved some level of competence at cooking Indian food now, and I’d like to share true Indian food with them, to repay them for all their generosity and kindness.
This has been a really good 24 hours, overall. I’m definitely psyched about going back down to the coast tomorrow–still not sure if I’m going to actually get in the water, but I do need to swap out my winter and summer clothes today, for sure.