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Published: October 25th 2005
Sake Here I Come
Just some of the few sakes at the festival
At the end of September I had my welcome enkai (drinking party) with my English Teachers. Like most enkais it was a nomihorai (all you can drink and eat). Due to events earlier that week and the idea of drinking with my English teachers made me drink one too many drinks. After dinner we all went to sing Karaoke...no Bon Jovi this time. We stuck to Backstreet boys :-). The following Monday Ogawa Sensei comes up to me and gives me a tons of information on the Sake Matsuri (sake festival) the second weekend of October. I guess from the enkai he realized how much I enjoyed a few drinks. Yet I was already well informed of the Sake Matsuri as most of the ALTs in Hiroshima-Ken are in attendance. Let me tell you, the Sake Matsuri was quite the experience. I don't even like sake! But, when you pay 1000 Yen for all you can drink of sakes from all over Japan (even Hokaido), as they say when in Rome do as the Romans do....Kanpai Japan!!!
Lisa and I met up with Stirling and some other Yamaguchi-Ken Jets at the train station and we made our way over
The beginning crew and one of our firs cups of sake
to the sake festival. There were TONS AND TONS of people all over the place. The matsuri started at 10 and we arrived at 1. People were already wasted! As we were entered we were handed a tiny sake cup, then set loose to test all the sake....kinda like when you first get to Disneyland and are set loose for the rides:-). We all had our first sake kanpai (cheers) together....not so good. Lisa and I decided it would get better as the day progressed....we thought wrong. Around 2 Lisa and I got a HORRIBLE one. Lisa goes "well lets just take it like a shot." WORST IDEA OF THE DAY!!! I swear it was like drinking vodka. So, we went for another round hopefully with better luck and to discard the awful taste in our mouths. I have decided I despise dry sake and like sweet sake. Unfortunately the sake did not end up tasting that much better by the end of the day....we all just got really drunk.
By the end of the evening we became best friends with quite a few Japanese people. I don't even want to go into depth of some of the crazy
Lots of Sake
things we did. Lets just say it included chanting obscene phrases in Japanese, such as chin chin budi budi saseji. (now I know none of you can read japanese, which is probably for the better!!) Let's just say lots of attention was focused on us. Keep in mind, it was then 8 pm so we had been there for about 6-7 hours. When we first started drinking we thought about keeping a tally of how many cups of sake we consumed. It might have been a good idea because man, we consumed a bunch! At 8 pm when the sake festival shut down, the only people left inside were us gaijin. Finally we stumbled out of the area. Many of the JETs stayed in Saijo to go dancing. A group of about 8 of us (6 plus 2 new japanese people) hopped on a train and headed into Hiroshima City to drink more and then dance more! Around 2, I was beat swarmed by Navy guys (gag me) and it was time to go home. We took cabs to Kabe and passed out.
All in all it was a perfect Saturday. I could not have asked for more fun.
Lisa and I starting out the day
It was the closest thing to a game day that I was going to get in Japan. In concluding remarks....sake is not very tasty. Sunday afternoon when I was finally sobering up and getting hungover, the thought of sake made me want hurl. If you want m opinion, go for the sweet sake instead of dry. Better yet, just cook with the stuff and don't drink it! Will I ever drink sake again....for those that know me what do you think? ;-). The Sake Matsuri in Saijo was a complete success!!!
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