Hello everyone. Yes, I'm still alive. I'm still working for another month or so. The indexing has been a little crazy lately, especially with all the foreign languages involved.
I joined the throngs down on the mall for the opening weekend of the Cherry Blossom Festival this afternoon. I picked a lovely if extremely windy day to see the blooming things. The blossoms were out in all their glory. I did not make the full circuit of the Tidal Basin this time, stopping at the bridge before heading back. I anticipated a lot more walking today since I wanted to check out the Sakura Matsuri, the Japanese street festival, on the other side of the mall. They'd taken over the stretch of 12th st near the Old Post Office and Ronald Reagan building. They had a whole ton of vendors serving various food. The lines were insane though.
The other T included the more Japanese portion of our story with vendors offering their wares. Kinokuniya sadly looked rather picked over and depressing. Local groups also demonstrated different aspects of Japanese culture. I came upon the Go demonstration where local players would play against anyone, even a complete and utter beginner like me. I gamely lost like a football fan I am -- 23-7. Where some players would patiently show you the rules, my pro seemed to prefer to dump you into the deep end and then partway through start peppering you with questions or suggestions. Alas Akira or Hikaru (or dear goofy Sai) I will not be.
After a false start, I found my way to the J-pop corner. People were playing an array of DDR, Karaoke, and Guitar Hero/Rock Band video games. I couldn't DDR very well on a good day. I couldn't imagine it after a long day of walking around. Katsucon was trying to win people over, as were other artists and dealers. I was afraid I was late for the main star, Ai Kawashima, but she'd just taken the stage by the time I arrived. I'm honestly not too familiar with a lot of j-pop stars, but she performs one of the "One Piece" themes. She used a keyboard to accompany her. I liked her second song "Tabidachi no hi ni..."
. Unfortunately it's also the name of another song, a graduation song, so finding more info on it has been trying, aside from the video. I stayed through a couple of songs, before I decided to head home. I was exhausted.
Metro was insane, made only worse by a rather belligerent rider on our train cussing out someone. That he was holding onto a stroller only made me fear more for his children. I was grateful to finally get to my stop and escape the madness.
I've uploaded my photos
onto Flickr, including some of the local blooming things at the library.