Tuesday, September 04, 2007

20070904: Transformation at Shrines

After escaping the love hotel and accompanying Spencer on his research adventure at the travel agent, we headed toward Kyoto, stopping to watch Transformers in English with Japanese subtitles. It was interesting to see the movie again (the third time, actually) in a foreign country.

There is a line in the movie, which if you've seen a preview you've already seen, about the autobots being really advanced robots -- Japanese models. No laughter in the Japanese theatre. In the US, having seen it twice, I can say there was a lot more laughter -- both in that part of the movie as well as other spots. Alas, not here.

Seating was interesting -- assigned seats and you get to pick them with the counter agent when you buy your ticket. Wow.

After leaving and heading back to Kyoto, Spencer went off to work and I found my way to two shrines. One of them was fairly large where I watched a woman make the rounds to the little stops in the courtyard. I thought it would be interesting to model how she did the ritual, so I did, to a degree. Mom asked me to light incense at a shrine -- partly joking I'm sure -- to
help them sell their house in New York so they can move to their new home. So I did.

Meanwhile, the whole while, I was listening to Seal's song, "Love's Divine" inspiring various thoughts about my own transformation, self perception, molting, emersion... My own divinity.

I replayed the song and danced in the shrine, offering myself to the divine at the temple, realizing that if I'm not here on this planet to dance, I'm not actually sure what I am here for.

I cried, released, expressed, emoted, and in the process, found myself experiencing a wonderful new connection to mySelf. Returning to Spencer's and reconnecting with him later -- how grateful am I he is my teacher as well (a Reverend) -- I noticed how I felt myself coming into balance in the shrine, allowing myself to release the stresses and tensions of months of
pressure, mishap and challenge around PoiGeek and the Temple, around not taking as much care of my body as I will moving forward, about the imbalance of the speed of my mind and slowness of my body... About how inspired I was to get my bicycle fixed now that I live and work in easy biking distance from each other.

Ah, the gift of Being in the Muck of things.

20070904: Locked into the love hotel

As cool as the love hotel is, the most limiting aspect of it is the fact that once you check in, you can't leave the room unless you are checking out. This meant that when Spencer had to get up and go for class, I had to go with him... To late to figure that out, he missed class, we slept in, and then were late getting out of the room.

Of course, the Love Hotel is designed for you to have a "rest" -- a 30 minute use of the space -- or a "stay." We had overstayed our stay, so we had to pay for a rest on top of that. :(

Still worth it though, for 15,600 Yen for the room and only 1,320 more Yen for the rest.

20070904: The Love Shack is a little old place...

In Japan, I've been told the children live with their parents until they marry. This could mean that at 35 you'd still be shacked up with Mom and Pop. Let's say you have a partner and you want some private alone time. What do you do then?

Love Hotels. How cool. They are themed hotels that only allow male/female couples -- not two men, not two women and not you alone. Have a fantasy about Sailor Moon? Hello Kitty? I've heard they have love hotels for just this thing.

In fitting with our theme of wetness for the night (see the entry on "Warm Summer Rain"), we went to the Water Hotel, a really beautiful love hotel in Osaka.

First, we go into the hotel and there is no one there to check us in. You go to a kiosk and select a room, get a receipt and walk to the room. Then you pay - cash -- at the door.

Once inside this lovely place, there was a console with about 20 buttons on it to control various lighting settings, the karaoke machine, television, AC and music. Next to the bed is what can only be considered the Mini-bar of sex toys. Yup, dildos, vibrators, lube and various accoutrements one might use for sexual play. Even free condoms on the nightstand that, in English, said "Family Planning."

Now the theme of our little love shack was water. And we had one of the upper mid-tier priced rooms, so it was pretty nice. Our bathroom? Equipped with a Jacuzzi, steam room, sitting bench and foot bath as well as a massage area and showers.

In the bathroom, a full 6 step set of instructions, lotions, potions and assorted smelly things for a fragrant refreshing bath. After a long day and night and running about, a steam sauna Jacuzzi was in order for me. MMmmmm.

20070904: Clubbing

After braving the rain, we decided to go to a club. We arrived at the Grand Café (?) which is more like a large bar lounge with a small dance area than a club. The 500 Yen cover charge included a drink ticket each, which, really, is quite a deal considering you could easily pay that alone for the drink.

I stuck to water and let Spencer grab my ticket with his while we hung out. Shortly after arriving, a friendly young Asian guy introduced himself to us. He was part of the group of people which comprised about 60% of the people at the club.

Feeling a little cold from the air conditioning on my wet cloths and hearing the music in the other room, I decided I wanted to dance. We headed into the room with the dance floor where I pushed a few of the tables which occupied the dance floor out of my way and I busted out my poi. Other than the security guard, guy behind the food bar and the dj's, we were about the only ones in there.

Squish, squish, squish went my shoes as I slipped on the floor, oggs lit up, and began to shake it to the music. This drew some attention and the group of kids joined us from the lounge on the dance floor.

In no time, I found myself happily dancing with this beautiful asian woman and I realized that dancing knows no language barrier and speaks to people in a universal way that allowed us an hour of dancing filled with lots of smiles and good fun, seemingly for us both.

As we're on the dance floor, suddenly a spray of white stuff comes down -- the illusion of snow I think was the intention. Except, well, I think it was soap. So there I was with socks that were soaked in sneakers that sloshed as I moved dancing on a nice smooth dance floor which was covered in wet soapy water.

Maybe it's their way of keeping the floors cleaner...

September 4: Multiculturalism in the Book store

i have been saying su me ma sen -- or trying to.
it helps.
i had a cool multicultural experience with that.
it means excuse me/pardon me for putting you out -- that sort of thing.
i was in the bookstore yesterday and this girl and i almost bumped into each other.

at the exact same time, she said, "I'm sorry" and i said, "Su me mi sen" -- it was a cool moment