May 25th, 2009

Genki days

If there’s one thing these two weeks in Japan have taught me, it’s that even the few words of vocab in Japanese I have learnt may not actually be valid in context. Be that as it may, I am pretty sure “genki” means merry and happy and fun, and the past few days of celebrating my birthday (what, I’m celebrating all month, right? I mean, how often does one turn 31?) have definitely been that. Starting the morning of the 23rd (I was born at dawn, but not in this time zone) in pictures:

We leave at dawn for the Tskuiji fish market. The only time during my trip that I have worn eye-makeup. Just seemed appropriate.

The outside of the market. Very intimidating, but very exciting.

Fishmongers and longshorefolk ride through the market on these little motorized carts. They move fast, they are loaded with fish and ice that has to be somewhere pronto there are nolanes or laws that they subscribe to, and they hate tourists.

Beautiful fish (there are a dozen similar pics, on Facebook because of the upload problem and because not everyone finds fish as poetic as I do.)

Tuna butchery.

Delightful sushi breakfast. As it turned out, I was not at all weirded out by eating raw fish and wasabi at 9am. Very happy to, in fact.

Birthday monorail (to Odaiba).

MeSci–the Museum of Emerging Science (it was great, but all my interior photos such; perhaps I can sum of the experience with “robot-POV simulation”).

Odaiba beach frolic. I love being 31.

Cake buffet. Cake on one’s birthday is very important.

Eating cake for supper. Life as it should be.

On to the 24th. Ben and his friend Ichiro, and a whole lot of other people, at the Tokyo Dome to cheer on the Giants (down with the Kobe Buffaloes, although they did in fact win in the end).

Gosh, the fans were amazing and intense. They sang the “hip-hooray” song for the final half hour of the game. Intense and tuneful. I sang too–it wasn’t that hard to learn. You just sub in each player’s name as the line-up bats. In fact, it works with my name too: “Hip-hooray, hip-hooray, hey Rebecca, hip-hooray.” We sang that so many times I though I felt my teeth start to realign around the words. Probably not really though.

More singing. Ben and his friends Yuka (left) and Miu sing “Ring of Fire” in a kareoke box.

So ends this installment of pictures, although I fully intend to keep celebrating the birthday until the end of May, or possibly all year. Thanks to all who sent greetings–and if you sent me a card before I left Canada, please know that it is here with me in the small birthday shrine I have built in my room. Man, I love birthdays!!


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So Much Love by Rebecca Rosenblum

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