Friday, December 19, 2008
Bounenkai. Bounenkai is an amazing time and a drunken time. Like many things in Japan, liquor makes it better. Gotta be with the people you work with after hours? Go drinking! It makes it all better. So, the Bounenkai is literally “forget the year gathering.” 忘年会：忘: forget：年：year：会：meeting/gathering. So, in normal English, Year-end Party. We had it in a hotel. I got sat to the direct left of the principal of the school. That’s all sorts of strange luck. And it was a random drawing so it was, indeed, fate at work for this, not unruly teachers. One of JTE (Japanese Teacher of English) sat to my left, and to his left is another English teacher, which doesn’t actually make the night any easier. That’s why there’s beer. We had some games, we had some fun, we drunk a lot, and ate some good food. That lasted for about 2 hours, and then there was the Nijikai (second party). That was fun. Less restrictive than the Bounenkai, fo’ sho’. I think at this point a couple or perhaps one of the teachers was trying to set me up with the youngest male teacher at the school. After about half the party he came over to pour drinks ‘cause that is what you do here, and they made him sit down next to me. A little later we all exchanged phone info. I invited the people around me to go to a club – ‘cause that was what I was doing next – and they kept trying to pressure him into coming. I got a few people (4 others) into going to what turned out to be the Sanjikai (the third party, or the after-parties’-after-party). We drank for like an hour or so…my memory is fuzzy due to time and drink. I invited them to a club for after ‘cause I was going to go out and have some fun…and stay up ‘til the subways started up again. I didn’t get any takers, but I did share a taxi up to Kokubuncho (the club district) with the teacher they were trying to set me up with. I got out and tried to find the club – I couldn’t. I called, and didn’t get through the first couple of times, so I walked around and kept trying. I eventually got through and entered the club. Danced a little…with an Iranian. Got his number and left the club with my friend and his date/girl/friend-he-picked-up-in-a-club. The Iranian guy asked me if I’d like to go to this club with him ‘cause he left at the same time too, but I definitely went with my friend (after making sure it was indeed okay that I tagged along to the next club, which luckily it was). We went to the club, and he danced with her and I just kinda stood around for a little while until I saw this one guy who kinda looked at me, and then he and his friend hit on these two Japanese girls who turned them down flat. I walked over and got a free drink out of that, and started to dance with one of them. I was nice. I did enjoy that dancing. It got a little raunchy (a little more than a little, if truth be told), but that is what happens when there are long lengths of alcohol imbibing and clubbing. Let’s all remember, this is technically the Gojikai (fifth party) for me, so there’s been many hours of liquor and partying. In fact, by the time it ended, I had been out for about 10 hours. Bounenkai started at 7, the club closed at around 5. Anyway, back to the story of that fellow and myself. We left the club together with his friend (as in we exited). The guy stopped to get a drink from a vending machine, and his friend seemed to bugger off in that way that says “my friend’s gonna get laid, so I’m gonna get out of here so he can make his move.” We started to walk and talk towards somewhere, I’m not sure where. We eventually got there and he offered to give me a ride. I admit openly that I didn’t actually understand what he was offering, but I took the offer…after I told him no sex. He was cool with that. He said something along the lines of only having sex with girlfriends, and then asked if I was the same, and I said yes, except with boyfriends. He drove me to my apartment, and we talked along the way. He is a really interesting guy.