Douglas Triggs (doubt72) wrote,
Douglas Triggs

五日: "There Are No Pandas In Colorado"

Things of note today:

Upon returning to the same hotel, but changing rooms, I have discovered that the shower here is... Shorter. It seems to have almost exactly six feet of headroom (which does actually seem slightly odd in a metric country), which is particularly noticable if you are, say, two inches taller than that.

I should probably note that in fact, yes, I did wear green yesterday. Completely by accident -- I only realized it today, a day after the fact. Yes, the whopping 5/64ths of my ancestry that is Irish would be so proud.

I'm not sure I'm ever going to get used to Japanese toilets. I mean, sometimes I'm completely at a loss to know what the heck I'm supposed to do when I see them, sometimes because they're those, er, whatever that kind of toilet is that some of the world uses that's completely alien to me as an American, and sometimes because, well, they clearly need an operating manual (preferably in English). Haven't seen one with a remote yet -- but I wouldn't be surprised if such a thing existed. Possibly with a built-in widescreen HDTV.

So... Today was the Nippon2007 meeting. Met my Japanese friend on the way in Akihabara, and we took the metro line out most of the way to Ibaraki where the meeting was. We ate at McDonalds, because I wanted to try it once (and, eh... Once is enough), and also because we didn't really have that much time before the meeting.

The meeting itself was, well, a meeting. I tried to read the meeting agenda and such while they babbled on about whatever stuff needed to be babbled about -- wasn't terribly successful, though -- and occasionally traded comments with a nice English fellow who happens to live here and just joined the committee. Sometimes I tried to understand what they were talking about, and sometimes I could almost understand them when they were talking slowly enough and used enough words that I knew -- enough to more or less get the gist of the direction of the conversation, if not the details -- but, well, still haven't quite crossed the wall to true conversational competence in Japanese yet.

While I was there, I gave all of the members attending the meeting a postcard and a Colorado quarter. I'm sure they were being polite, as Japanese always are, but they also seemed to appreciate them, and besides sharing a number of business cards and such, one of them asked for my address so he could send me a postcard in return. I hope a fair number of them will manage to make it to the WorldCon in Denver next year -- I think I've done my part to sell Colorado. :)

I had expected to be pretty bored during the meeting, but with all of the above, I really wasn't too much.

Anyway, after the meeting, a few of us went to some sort of Japanese family-style restaurant. I'm sure there's a word for it, but I don't know what it is. Surprisingly, this was the first time on my entire trip I took off my shoes to enter an establishment of any kind -- I'd expected to be doing that a lot more than I have. Had various interesting Japanese food, drank a lot of beer. For the record, raw horse meat isn't as bad as I would have expected, but it's not exactly good, and once was certainly enough. :-P

So, tomorrow... No idea. I'm on my own until Dusty arrives (my Japanese friend in Tokyo has to work today), and I have no idea what I want to do. Maybe I'll just get on the train and wander randomly around Tokyo or someplace. Oh, if it's clear, I should go someplace with a view of Fuji-san, too -- it was sunny today, but with the buildings and such, I couldn't see it. Maybe Ueno? I've been meaning to scout out that direction since I haven't gotten on the subway at 入谷 yet, and that's the most logical station for going to a few places.
Tags: 日本 3/2007

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