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Fourth Of July 2009

Posted on Sunday July 05, 2009 at 8:45am in ,

Since the last post, I spent the remainder of the week being sick. Very sick. I didn’t go to any classes, I just laid in bed and slept. Occasionally, I watched some movies. I watched Midnight Express, I’m Not There and Forgetting Sarah Marshall. All of them were pretty good.

I was still very sick up until Friday. Asami took me to the pharmacy to get some medicine with me and brought me back. The following day was the Fourth of July, a big American holiday, which we were planning on celebrating. Unfortunately, it was looking like I wasn’t going to be better in time. But, in a Fourth of July miracle of sorts, I was feeling much better the next day.

Nate and George left early morning to go to the Gotou islands, about 3 hours away by boat from Nagasaki port. Asami came over to the apartment around 10:30 with some snacks and things. We made plans for the day and got ready to go. At noon we went to go see her younger sister who was working at a video rental shop we frequent. She had just started working there a few days ago and they were having a huge sale: 10 yen video rentals. That’s 10 cents for a video rental, a cd rental, a book rental, anything in shop. When we got there to say hi, there was a line out the door to the sidewalk with customers carrying all the videos they could hold. It was quite a sight.

From there, we went to have some hot dogs for lunch. Fourth of July hot dogs. Being Japanese, Asami didn’t understand Independence Day until I came along. I showed her how to do it right, though. First step to a successful Fourth Of July: Fourth Of July hot dogs. We went to a nearby Mosburger to get some.

Fourth Of July
Fourth Of July hot dogs. Since I was just getting over being sick and hadn’t eaten since Tuesday, I got full really fast.

When we were so full we couldn’t breathe, we walked to get some movies for later. The video store that Asami’s sister works at was too packed, so we went to 遊イング instead, a video shop that I was already a member for. We picked out several movies since it was only 100 yen rentals and I had 300 yen in points on my card. We got: Halloween (the Rob Zombie remake), Step Brothers, Blood Diamond, and Austin Powers. We only had to pay 100 yen for 4 rentals.

We walked through Yamada denki to look at computers and digital cameras for Asami, since she has neither. We also got some food for the movies with my extra Yamada points.

We went back to the apartment to drop off the videos and food and then relax. When it got to be around 6, we headed off for Yume Saito, a big mall down by the harbor. We did a bunch of shopping there and got a bit carried away with the time. I got a new wallet to replace my old one that was tearing, and some sandals to wear with my jinbei.

We found a bunch of Engrish.

Fourth Of July
The smell of the sky refreshes. Under that sky…

Fourth Of July
Crude oil is too expensive.

There was also a pet shop with lots of really cute dogs and cats. Then, we found this miserable looking animal with it’s neck all bent abnormally:

Fourth Of July
It was sitting normally before I went to take the picture, so it must have just chosen to sleep like this. Strange way to sleep.

I saw these patches in a Village Vanguard:

Fourth Of July
The Japanese language doesn’t have any curse words so I guess I can understand their fascination with ours.

Realizing it was nearly 9, we bought some fireworks from a store in the mall and went to light them in the park by the harbor. On the way through the harbor, we passed by some of my American friends from Gaidai. Adam, Lauren and Chris were all out drinking on the wharf. We stopped by to say hi and see what was going on. They were celebrating the Fourth, too.

Under the bridge, down by the river we set up our camp for fireworks. In Japan, the common way to do it is to set up a candle like so and light the fireworks from that:

Fourth Of July
I guess it’s because they’re concerned about burning their fingers by lighting the fuses directly.

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I think this was the first one.

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Asami holding up her sparkler.

Fourth Of July

Fourth Of July

Fourth Of July

Fourth Of July

I was surprised we actually went through as many fireworks as we did. We bought a pretty large package for two people (or so I thought), but Asami was confident we would use them all and we did end up using all of them.

On the way back, we stopped at Family Mart to get some juice and chu-hai for the movies. We didn’t get back until after 10:30 though and we had a lot of movies to go through. We spent more time at the mall than we had intended, but we were happy that we found so much to look at.

First movie was Halloween. It was okay, I don’t really have much to say about it. Asami was scared of it, but I think horror is just a bad genre. Either all of the horror movies I’ve seen are doing it wrong or I just don’t get it. None of them seem to be scary. Halloween is a pretty good example of this. There isn’t anything to be afraid of. It’s just another slasher film.

Second movie was Step Brothers. I loved it, Asami loved it. We laughed a lot. For a while, I was starting to think I didn’t like Will Ferrel anymore. But, looking at this movie and looking back at all of the other movies he’s done I realize that wasn’t the case. Sure, Semi-Pro sucked, but Will Ferrel is incredibly talented and has so many great movies.

It was nearly 3, so we called it a night on the movies. It was a great Fourth Of July!

Today, we picked up where we left off with Austin Powers (the first one). A classic. I had forgotten how funny it was, even though I’d seen it so many times. Comedies these days aren’t as funny as Austin Powers. Everything about it is simple comedic brilliance.

As for Blood Diamond, it was so long that we didn’t get to it. We have it until Saturday though, so…maybe some other time before then.

When Austin Powers ended, we went to Cocowalk to get some lunch. Asami recommended this really really good steak and rice dish from Pepper Lunch. It was amazing how good it was. I will eat it many more times before I leave. After lunch, I found a Dr. Pepper in a store so I got it for Asami so she could try one for the first time. Surprisingly she actually liked it.

We didn’t have any shopping to do so we mostly just wandered around until her bus home came.

I went back to my apartment by train and Nate was back from his trip to Gotou. He, George, Nicolas, and Megumi seemed like they had a good time. The weather was perfect on the Fourth, so they had a good time at the beach, but on the second day there wasn’t much to do.

Well, that was the weekend. A great Fourth Of July in Japan!

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