All your bandwidth is mine.

Driving along the ocean…
[Just as a note: this entry is going to take forever to load. Sorry. :) ]
In the entirety of the noto peninsula, there really exists no town, place or destination that could in all good conscience be referred to as “noteworthy”. Certainly blessed with an abundance of nature, a welcome lack of urban sprawl and multiple onsens which claim to fight all manner of ailments, the Noto peninsula nonetheless often plays second fiddle to the hood, (or more importantly, Kenrokuen (one of the “top three” gardens in all of Japan)) the primary attraction in the quiet little prefecture that is the prefecture. And prominent (if that is the correct word) among the sublime anonymity that is northern the prefecture stands Anamizu, a tiny little town remarkable only insofar as it is conveniently located on a highway bus route.
Traveling… can you take me up? Traveling…
So why spend the better part of an extended holiday in this town, (amongst others) in the deep inaka (countryside)? Well, for one, they happened to have a fantastically ordinary matsuri (translation: excuse to get drunk with japanese people on the streets) this past weekend. And two, everyone else was going, which as anyone who has ever spent a day in high school can tell you, is good enough reason to do a lot of things. And three, Cat has a house on the beach, which means lots of seaside frolicking (playing in the surf, searching for buried treasure, you know, the standard stuff you see the models doing on the pages of the latest LandsEnd catalog, a magazine which I believe holds great promise as source of philosophy for life) (*aaaannd cue bizzarely misplaced tangent…*) for yours truly. So off I went!
The first thing I discovered is everyone else seemed to get a memo which I apparently did not, concerning the en masse wearing of yukata by gaijin. So while they all got to look spiffy, I walked around feeling less than cool, though my apprehensions were somewhat appeased by the fact that no matter how hard she tries, a 6 foot tall white canadian girl in a kimono is still going to stick out a bit more than poor little half-chinese panda. ;)
Moby looks like a shogun ready to strike death upon his foes.
The matsuri was preceded by the unfettered consumption of large amounts of food, after which Helen informed us that her supervisor requested our presence at his house/liquor store (you could almost see my eyes light up when she mentioned that combination). So off we went, stomachs full, to cram even more food, beer and so forth into our mouths. As an aside, the man was seriously weird – much to Helen`s chagrin, he insisted upon relating all manner of “funny stories” about her and the previous ALTs, but somehow it almost always ended up having to do with sex. And thinly guised innuendo there within. Not that I minded, I should say – I got free beer and sushi out of it, and it wasn`t my less-than-spectacular (sigh….) sex life that was the topic for the evening at any rate…
The girls look somewhat less than enthused about the sprawling feast…
And after politely taking our leave (Helen not so politely), off we went to the matsuri. Nothing special, just your standard japanese local town festival. I`m too tired to write any clever commentary, so just enjoy the random spread of pictures:
This schizophrenic pikachu represents my exact feelings at the end of the work day.
Cute kid`s float! The children drew all the pictures on the side.
Yuki: Kent has such a nice camera, doesn`t he?
Helen: (without pause) Yeah! It`s so BIG…!!!
Mike: It`s been a while, hasn`t it, Helen?
Hamutaro looms menacingly upon the helpless and terrified populace…
More cute kids posing on a float amidst cries of “Gaijin! Gaijin!”
One of the only NON intoxicated priests we saw that night.
These kids were adorable! The one on the right was terrified of me (but who isn`t?)
He seemed to have no problem smiling for the girls though!!
Moby looks apprehensive about this man`s intentions…
The only way to loft heavy objects – with a cigarette in your mouth!
After the festival, we all went off to Cat`s place on the beach, where to my suprise, I found my devious companions had conspired to throw me a birthday party, complete with a home made cake (quite a spectacular feat given that none of them had ovens…) featuring a cute miffy bunny nicked from someone`s keychain which later had an unfortunately close run-in with a flaming candle (ewww…. molten miffy goo…). It was spectacular fun, given that I haven`t had a suprise birthday party since I was 7 or 8, though granted I wasn`t all the hard to dupe at that time (not that things have changed that much since then, come to think about it…). *sigh* I felt like a little kid again… ;)
The remnants of last night`s party.
Mr. Midori meets an undignified end amongst the danging streamers.
And then? Back again. To the grind. School is back in full swing again, and while the week is still young, the kids seem to be behaving a little better now. Maybe it`s cuz I`m packing the plastic heat I got from Moby for my b-day, leaving the butt of the gun peeking conspicously out of the waistband of my dress pants, threatening those little tyrants to go ahead… MAKE MY DAY…! The weather has cooled down some, which is nice – makes those ties a little less oppressive to wear, the stress levels a little slower to rise, the day a little more sublime.
I went for a walk in Nagamachi (a historical samurai district) tonight, after work. I discovered the following immaculate public toilet (the outside was even more beautiful, I`ll take a picture later) in the middle of some winding, walled-in streets. To be honest, the whole thing was nicer than my house. I never thought I`d see the day when I`d want to live in a public toilet. But I do.
This is actually more toilet paper than I have at home…
Go figure.
Now listening to: “Utada Hikaru – Traveling”
(ta- ta- ru-…. ta- ta- ru-… ta- ta- ru-… errmm…. *repeat ad nauseum*)
11:23 am

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