Yesterday was Blaine’s birthday and he had plans to go out and have some drinks with some friends. I decided to join even though I already had a pretty intense day of trying to understand Japanese and was still feeling a bit jet lagged.
Blaine said we were going to meet them in Kuki, another city near Kazo. We had to catch the train as it was only a couple of stops away. When we got to the train station Blaine was explaining these large pink squares that were marked on the station platform were spaces that only women could use. There was a certain schedule for using these pink squares, which was mainly in rush hour times. I asked him if they were to aid passengers to get on the train easier. “No they are to stop men groping women when it is busy. Yer, a lot of that happens in Japan!”.
When we got to Kuki we walked to a Izakaya not far from the station. It was pretty small and only had a couple of tables. These were filled up mostly with Blaine’s friends. Not long after we sat down beers were shoved in our face and everyone gave me a warm welcome to Japan. It was pretty hard to understand what was going on as most people were Japanese and there English was limited. Although there were some English teachers from Kuki. These guys were all from America so for everyone it was quite a novelty to have Englishman to talk to.
Everyone was pretty nice, Blaine tried his best to translate when needed. One of the Japanese guys decided to give me the nickname “Green Man” as I was wearing a green shirt. Everyone kept ordering me drinks so I ended up getting pretty pissed. As a result it made it a lot harder to understand the toilet. I was in there for about 5 mins just trying to understand how to flush it. Everyone went on to another bar but I decided to catch the train home. This was almost a bad mistake as without Blaine I couldn’t understand any of the train signs and it took me about 1 hour walking around trying to talk to people and one fluke later to get me back to Kazo.