Uh, by tomorrow, I actually meant in a week or so. School just started this week and the orchestra program is getting everything together. Superhuman? Probably. Crazy? Yes.

The rest of our first day in Japan was  relatively tame, considering that we had just endured 13 hours of coach airplane fun…

We went to a ramen shop near the apartment, and nobody spoke English at all. At this point, I was a little embarassed to look at my little phrase book (this feeling soon passed.) Amid utterances of “Amerika-jin desu,” and “Iie, wakarimasen,” we ordered (or they ordered for us) some miso ramen with veggies and a little bit of meat. The ladies running the place (there were two) stood in the middle of the tiny shop with pots of broth, woks, and bowls of noodles and… things that you put in ramen, durrrr. A drunk old man was simultaneously pounding cups of sake and making fun of us in Japanese, so we slurped our ramen in relative silence, accepting the shame and occasionally talking about how they were making fun of us, but in English. When the cook told us the price, I had to ask her to write it down on a old receipt in my bag with a red Sharpie marker.

Why do I have a red Sharpie?

After our ramen adventure (we wanted to go back but found we always returned to Itabashi after the place was closed) we hung out in the arcade for a couple minutes, then hopped on the train again and took it to Roppongi. We stopped and got lost momentarily in Ebisu while transferring to the Hibiya line, but no matter. Once in Roppongi, I tried to find Gas Panic (a bar recommended by my guidebook that apparently has multiple locations, even in Roppongi) and failed; we went, instead, to the bar with the most appealing name, hoping for loud music and a fun crowd.

Not surprisingly, that method does NOT work to find the bar you want; putting your ear to the door to confirm doesn’t either. We found Bar Fake on the fifth floor of a building off of one of the main roads (the smaller roads in Japan look like alleyways, except not as sketchy.) I put my ear to the door, thought I heard something fun, opened, found a lounge. Too awkward to leave, we entered, ordered some (weak) drinks, talked to the bartender in English.

The bartender wanted us to come back and sit at the bar, and said that she wanted to speak to us in English. She was wearing a lot of makeup.

After Bar Fake, we walked in Don Quijote for a while (a five or six story knick-knack wonderland, filled with groceries, novelty toys, shoes, stationery, porn, etc.) Then, we went home and slept until 2PM the next day.

Next time: Akihabara and more fun in Roppongi.

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