Friday, November 2, 2007

Bullet-Point Friday

  • The first definition of "bullet" listed in the OED is "a small round ball." I think first of a child's ball: small, probably red, and rolling across a street in front of an oncoming car.
  • When I was living in Shimonoseki, I often traveled by Shinkansen, Japan's bullet-train. Speeding down to Fukuoka (sometimes purposely mispronounced "Fuck you, okay.") for a day of gaijin (that word still grates on my sensibilities) shopping was a luxury I grew accustomed to, especially during my last semester in Japan: time was running out; time was of the essence. And I could turn a 90-minute one-way trip into a 20-minute breeze just by paying more than three-times the cost of regular trainfare.
  • I made up for the cost and convenience by factoring in Shinkansen tickets when traveling home to the US or back to Japan to serve out my two-year contract: if I could get cheaper airfare from out of Kansai--even with the Shinkansen fare--I would go that route. Direct flights from Osaka were always more acceptable than stopovers on that half-assed Korean peninsula. Plus a trip to Osaka probably meant a trip to nearby Kyoto as well. If time wasn't an issue but money was, then I could take advantage of several other transportation alternatives: the overnight ferry or the long-distance bus service.
  • My preference was the overnight ferry: not only was the cost bizarrely low compared to just about everything else in Japan--$5.00 for a can of Coke!--but the ferry also included an onsen, or traditional Japanese public bath.
  • The time I've spent wet and naked in the company of foreign nationals cannot be measured. (I'm just saying....)
  • Over the 1998 Christmas vacation, I spent probably no less than four hours a day at the onsen where I was staying in balmy Okinawa.
  • Perhaps it's been a way of recovering from the years of Texas summers and droughts I've suffered through. Perhaps I'm more fish than human. Perhaps I didn't have a clue what else to write on a Bullet-Point Friday.

1 comment:

  1. I've greatly enjoyed your "Bullet Point Friday" segments. This one was just as interesting as the others, so, please dont feel disheartened.