Friday, September 17, 2004

Another day

1642、16 sep 2004/09/17
At work.

Just finished up another day, more or less. Today I went to see the city of Saijo, which neighbors Niihama to the west. Whereas Niihama is a past-its-prime industrial center, Saijo seems to be a way-past-its-prime cultural center. I really liked it. I had tea in the former home of a local samurai lord, converted into a tea house. The garden was unbelievable, and everyone there was really nice. The owner came out and talked to me in English (broken nonetheless).

Getting used to this lifestyle, I suppose. Going out tonight – with people, no less, so that’s a bit of a first. The expats in town invited me to come hang with them, some dinner at some place that’ll probably cost an arm and a leg.

I’m still trying to figure out how money works hereabouts. As in, how much I can afford to spend in a week, what kind of lifestyle I can afford to lead. If I run out of money, that’s it, I’m out of money until the first of the next month. That’s a little scary, so I’m trying to tuck away cash here and there for rainy days.

This is going to be a 3-day-weekend, because of grandparents day on Monday. Then I also have Thursday off for some sort of memorial day that I don’t really understand. That’s two national holidays in a week. I dig it. I heard there’s going to be a big party of some sort in Imabara (where I went two days ago) this weekend, like a 3-day-long concert on the beach with raving at night. Not my scene, but then again, using the past as a standard neither is international travel. My point being, it sounds like fun and I might go check it out after my zazen session at the temple on Sunday morning.

What else to report? Much to my surprise after all I’ve heard from so many people, nobody has tried to marry me off to their beautiful 18 year old daughter yet. Maybe I haven’t been here long enough.

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