Couch Surfing Fun

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

It would seem that I’ve stumbled across the best couch surfing host in Japan. Mari Nakahama has been wonderful and staying with her family has been a highlight of my time in Japan.
I stopped being a stowaway on at the Best Western Joytel and left Barry to the Frisbee on Saturday. My CS hosts were having a party for a festival on Saturday night to celebrate the meeting of two stars in the Milky Way which happens once a year. A whole bunch of Mari’s friends came the function room at her apartment building to decorate a stick of bamboo with origami and paper wishes. I was quite surprised to see that most of the girls were using their iphones for instructions on folding the paper. It made me feel less inadequate though!
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Mari’s daughter, Aayumi is also very talented in traditional Japanese arts. She held a tea ceremony for me which was quite fun. Well, it would have been more fun if there wasn’t an audience watching me hesitatingly turn the bowl, sip, trying to follow instructions on when to eat the sweets, etc. I did pick up that I was supposed to make a noise while drinking and got a great round of applause from the watching women.
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Barry and I have received a few compliments on our chopstick skills but I have to admit mine failed on me at the party when I was given some jelly to eat. I did notice that almost everyone else struggled too though, especially those with plastic chopsticks instead of wooden ones. You try it! Everyone said I looked very natural and comfortable wearing the kimono, and slurping my tea like a pro so it looks like I’m one language away from being Japanese!

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