April was a big month for Kim and I. Not only did Kimi turn the big two six, but we got out and about with friends and explored the stranger side of Japan. We went to the Fertility Festival or as most of us Gai Jin know it as the "Penis Festival." It is a celebration of manhood. The men parade around in low cut kimonos with sumo type undies. They hoot and holler as they raise giant phallic symbol shrines into the air. The best part about the festival is the things they sell, from penis pops to penis key chains. You could even buy a daikon (Japanese giant white radish) in the shape of a dong. Overall I wouldn't recommend going to the festival. It was literally packed with Gai Jin, and everyone is pushing and shoving to buy their most favorite Penis memorabilia. I must say it was quite unpleasant. However eating Korean food afterwards with Wee Li, Imelda, Nix, and Renee made it all worth it.
Kim and I also went to an Irish games festival with a soccer team that I played with a couple of times and got a shot at attempting to play a little Gaelic football. I admit that I was absolutely terrible at it, but Kim gave a good showing with her blinding speed. I could go through the painful effort of trying to describe it to you, or you could just click on the hyperlink and read about it. I choose the latter, enjoy.
Last but not least we had our second BBQ event in Tokyo. It was on the same river as our first one, but this time we had a luxury not often found in Tokyo......grass. That's right, good old fashioned natural turf found all over most parts of the world, but seemingly missing from Tokyo. Everyone chilled out for golden week by bringing lots of food and drink and just having some fun in the sun. Will and Clayton provided entertainment by playing the guitar and trumpet while we all sang along to such familiar tunes as John Mellencamp's "Cherry Bomb."
If there is one thing I love about living abroad it is being part of the expat community. You meet so many people from all over the world, and instantly friendships develop. After a soccer match one day I was having a few beers with the boys and had an Englishman to my left, a Kiwi to my right, and a French, Irish and Canadian sitting across from me. You can imagine the fantastic conversations that were shared over a tall glass of cat piss (Japanese beer). Basically everyone prepared to make fun of the lone Frenchman...."um who liberated France again?????" All in good fun and he took it well. I'm sure the Irishman took a couple stabs at me, but I really couldn't understand what the hell he was saying. Good times
Does anyone know where I can find a keychain of a monkey holding a giant penis?
.....those aren't women.....
All these people were pushing and shoving to see some spectacle, so I held up the camera in the air to see what it was. Basically it is a girl riding a rather large wooden dong. Apparently it gives you good luck in the baby making department.
The outfit of the shrine carriers.
The gang: Wee Li, Imelda, Nix, Kim, and David the Glorious
They come in all shapes and sizes.
Kimi tearing it up at Gaelic Football. She is the one with the ball. You can literally see the fear from her opponents.
The Gaelic Football Team
Kim and Clayton doing their Asian thing
Yu-chan and Renee enjoying the finest Chu hi in the land
John is a grilling machine
See I wasn't lying, grass!
Yohei......I think he's drunk
Kim, Rie-chan, and Renee
Terry explaining "G-Bangers" to Yohei
Will singing away