Someone rang at 6.59am. I heard a voice say "GenkiEnglish..." and then it was cut off. I waited for whoever it was to call again, but fell back asleep.
We left Horigane. Maddie was sad to see us go - where else would she find such witty and entertaining study buddies? She bequeathed us a swag of Misato apples. And a few mikans. Our vitamin balance was restored.
Maddie had directed us to a cheap petrol station (though she called it a gas stand) and when we arrived we found it was self service. In the west this is the norm - but not in Japan. Normally a small army of staff descends on your vehicle, cleans the windows, disposes of rubbish and ashtray residue, puts in the petrol and then stops traffic so you can safely get back on the road. There was no one. After 3 years of being pampered I actually had to pour my own petrol. I failed miserably - the pump would not dispense any fuel. A voice issued from a nearby speaker "Replace the nozzle and try again". Then a guy in uniform appeared to ensure that the incompetent foreigner didn't cause an industrial accident.
I sheepishly paid inside.
Autobacs. Cheapest tyre price so far. We left the car at the shop and went for a walk. On the way to Laox Computers we saw an old guy staggering drunkenly along the footpath before collapsing face down on the asphalt. He got up and lurched into some nearby bushes. A
man walking the other way saw this but did nothing. We went up to the guy and caught him before he fell again, and sat him down. He had grazed his chin and hand and was sweating profusely, but there was no smell of alcohol. We asked what had happened, and he explained that he was diabetic and had become
hypoglycemic. Against his slight protestations that he was OK we had the nearby coffee shop call an ambulance. Three paramedics arrived and took the old guy to hospital.
Good deed for the day done we hit Laox, and used their internet connection to check out homepage.
Long, arduous drive to Mie Prefecture, involving skirting Nagoya and all its traffic. Scenic Route 19. Coffee break at
Nakatsugawa Mr Donuts (30 down, 1170 to go...). Chuo Expressway, then the Higashi-Meihan to Suzuka. It was in Suzuka that we discovered Mie has the lowest density of street signs in Japan. We wanted to go to Hisai-shi, but even when we asked people we received less than ideal directions which 3 times lead us to places which were definitely NOT Hisai-shi. The roads we traversed were not on our map, or if they were, they were so inadequately labelled they might as well not have been. We found some signs - they had the names of towns many kilometres away, but not Hisai-shi. Finally at Circle-K a guy with the worst teeth I have ever seen pointed us in the right direction.
We arrived at Dave Kelsey's place at 10. We have found individual houses more easily that we found Dave's entire city.
Dave is a Canadian. Several clues. The large map of Canada in his bedroom. It was freezing but he wore a t-shirt. He had hockey playing on his VCR. Dave's neighbour Donny dropped in and we swapped JET stories, all of them far too tawdry for this diary.
Opinions expressed in this diary are personal
views of Will Jasprizza. They do not
necessarily represent those of Genki English,
especially where he is slagging people off
or making jokes which sounded better at the
time!!! Please be understanding!
Sign up to get my top tips, games & hints via email!