Friday, October 13, 2006

Trip to Fukuoka Highlights—an excuse to not create a cogent narrative

Every woman well-dressed in knee-high boots or socks. Me, the only one in open-toed flats.

The gaijin game: Colin won the first day, I won the second only because of a jackpot at the Hakata station.

A pet-store with stacks upon stacks of adorable, miniature animals in tiny glass cages. Such a furious ambivalence of gut being wrenched by cuteness as well as the misery of the situation. Wish there was a word for it.

Looking a monkey directly in the face. Same pet-store. Colin has a picture. This was after it appeared to have been fellating itself (not kidding). I stared at it with my face next to the glass. It caught sight of me and dragged its chain across the mesh floor to press its face close to mine. We shared a moment. It began eating newspaper.

There was a marmoset, too. If you don’t know what it is, look it up. Adorable. It cost $5,000. I don’t remember what the monkey cost. There were two beautiful Abyssinian kittens. When you looked at them, they pawed at the glass and cried at you through their fishbowl. Then I cried.

Walking around in circles for blocks, arguing about directions, in order to find the various locations websites had recommended. Only found one—an American style diner, highly recommended. It was so worth it. I ate a cold chicken sandwich for five dollars. It was cut from the bone slices of chicken, lettuce, tomatoes, caesar dressing and mustard on toasted bread. So normal for America, but so utterly amazing here. Colin had an equally amazing BLT. We miss sandwiches. The Japanese don’t believe in them.

Searching for the recommended bars, finding them closed. We were stalked for twenty minutes by a young Japanese couple who eventually approached us in the 7-11 and asked if we would go to a bar with them. We went with them to two swanky places and talked for hours until they insisted on helping us get a cab at 1 AM.

Temples. Shrines. A faux-spiritual experience walking through a tunnel of orange torii to ring the bell and get the god’s attention.

Castle ruins in the park—there was a ninja lurking in the bushes. We didn’t see him at first, and it kind of scared us, since he had so much time before us even noticing him to pelt us with throwing stars. I guess that’s why he’s a ninja.

Visiting the archeological excavation site of a ninth century guest house. There was an entire display devoted to the toilet. What the toilet may have looked like, actual wooden sticks used as toilet paper, and finally, samples of materials found in the human feces: various seeds, animal bone fragments, etc. Only in Japan would they dwell so obsessively on this shit, pun intended.

Blowing off the heads of zombies in Sega Town.

In conclusion: I love Fukuoka. It’s an actual city, but so much better than Tokyo. I wish I lived there.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Mandi said...

Hey,
Definitely dug the blog entry! I wish you would post some more pics, for example the one of you and the monkey that Colin took! I wish I had something interesting to tell you but life is same ol' same ol' here. Oh, sadly though, Brulee disappeared a couple of weeks ago. We tore the place apart looking for her and worrying but never found her. It's really sad, she was so awesome. I'm not planning on getting another one anytime soon, too sad. Hope all continues to go well and love ya lots!
Mandi

4:32 AM  
Blogger Carol said...

Hi Honey! I was very happy to read your blog. It's great just to see how your're doing, and what you're doing. I'm so glad that you have the energy on the weekends to visit interesting places on your island. Is there a big festival in November? Your weather sounds a lot better than ours here.

Love, Mom

1:54 AM  
Anonymous natalie said...

oh holy crap kittens in a fishbowl O.o I want to rescue the kittens

and everything else too

and I hearts your updates do thems more too

1:58 AM  

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