Tuesday, February 19, 2008

My Name is Kebin - part 一 (ichi)

You know the kind of guy whose head sticks up above the crowd and then wonders why no one sits by him on the train. You know; the kind of guy who points at the pictures on the menu rather than using the words. That was me. Every time something fun happened to me, something boring was always waiting around the corner. Excitement. That’s when I realized I had to change. So, I made a list of everything fun I’ve ever wanted to do in Japan and one by one I’m gonna cross them off my list. I’m just trying to have a funner life. My name is Kebin.

Number 163: eat steak in Kobe.

About ten years ago an earthquake devastated the city of Kobe. The event scarred and transformed the city. The city holds an annual remembrance in memorial of all those who lost their lives. The downtown area is transformed into a festival of lights. Last year we missed the illumination.

This year we decided to visit the city and view the lights. We also wanted to cross eat steak in Kobe off our list of things to do in Japan. We want to do as much as we can here in Japan before we head back to the states and one item on the list is eating world famous Kobe beef. Here was an opportunity to use one stone and kill two birds.

We left after I got off of work on a Friday afternoon. I rode straight from school to the train station, making the fifteen-minute bike ride in about seven. The trip to Kobe should have taken about two hours and would have if it had not been for the over powering smell of cologne man. We were riding the rails around rush hour and when we boarded in Omihachiman the train was already crowded and after a few stops we managed to get a seat to rest our body on. The stretch between Kyoto and Osaka is usually a tranquil area with few passengers and fewer stops. It was not true on this day and the train was relatively full. We were unfortunate enough to have a gentleman sit down near us who must have fallen into a vat of Old Spice. He reeked of cologne. There was little we could do. There were no seats available to move to. Our choice was to remain in our seat or get up and stand. It was a difficult choice because even if we moved there was no guarantee that we would be able to move far enough from the man to avoid the smell. We chose to remain in our seat. The smell grew stronger and stronger gradually overpowering everything else. Jenny made a comment about how she was beginning to get nauseas from the smell. I guess that Logan must have been feeling the same way because a few moments later his face turned green and he lost his lunch all over the front of Jenny’s coat. Well at least he would be hungry for dinner now.

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