Ninjas, Waterslides, and Meat

A weekend involving ninjas, drinking, and waterslides absolutely *must* be good…. I’m sitting in bed, hoping I can do a quick recap of the weekend, without falling asleep.

Saturday

I take turns with Ben, doubling to the Hozumi station, and pay 100yen to park my bike for a night. From there, we take the train for a few hours and head to Iga in Mie prefecture. It is evident that Iga is known as a birthplace of “the ninja” when you see manhole covers with cartoon ninjas on them. We met Patrick and Paul, and went to the Iga Ninja museum. After having been to Eiga Mura (which was absolutely horrible) we would have liked almost anything. The price: 700yen. You are welcomed by a couple pink female ninjas, and shown many of the tricks in a mock ninja house. Some of those tricks were pretty cool, like a shelf that you could swing down and then it became secret stairs up to the secret top floor! After being shown a bunch of tricks in the ninja house, we walk through the “museum” area, looking at stuff behind glass and reading descriptions. This was even really cool, cuz we all liked ninjas. Who doesn’t!? ^_^

We made sure to catch the last live demonstration that day, for only 200yen!! It was even accompanied by a cheesy soundtrack on speakers that couldn’t support the volume! I wish I had made videos of the demonstration – I will have to get what Ben took. There was the main ninja dude, who demonstrated a bunch of weapons, and there was another guy who came in for the simulation battles… using real weapons! The last battle was done really well! After the demonstration, we went up to get our picture taken with the main guy, and then Patrick asked if he had nun-chucks – to this, he runs behind a wall, and comes back holding two sickles attached to each other with a chain! Cool! Ben tried to hold them, but he quickly took them away from Ben and demonstrated that they were very sharp by shaving a piece of wood off a nearby post with little effort. Everyone else had left, at this point, and he gave us a private demonstration of this new toy! Private ninja demonstrations kick serious ass.

Leaving the ninja museum, I had spotted some shuriken that finally were not rubber! Throwing stars! Every aspiring ninja needs a good set of throwing stars, so I bought 8 – which promptly drained money I wasn’t expecting on spending. We were happy, but happiness only lasts so long on an empty stomach, so we went to an izakaya (Japanese style bar) for food and drink. After that, we were truly happy. Ice cream followed, and then some more drinking, and then looking for a hotel to stay at (that we could afford), and then even more drinking. Yes, we were very happy by the end of the night. To top it all off, we got our own Japanese style bath – so relaxing!

So much for a “quick recap!” I fell asleep after writing “Hozumi” in the first sentence… =/ Why am I so tired, recently? ….

Sunday

We pried ourselves out of bed, because we had to be out of there by 10am -unless we wanted to pay for another night. We went to another museum, and did a lot of walking: looking for waterfalls. We didn’t find any waterfalls, but we happened upon a Brazilian restaurant where we ordered PIZZA! Really good pizza! This restaurant was the first time in Japan I’ve ever encountered someone trying to push religion on people. He came up to us, after having visited the table next to us, and spoke Japanese while waving around “words of the Bible.” After realizing we were all hopeless, he wished us all luck and shook our hands. Umm.. yah. The Brahma beer was actually quite good, too – and I don’t like beer! I got papaya juice, and man was it good! We had no more time to look for waterfalls, so we said our goodbyes and parted on our seperate ways: Ben and I back to the country-side we call home.

Monday (a holiday)

As far as Ben and I were aware of, Mayu and Mami were going to take us to the local swimming pool (still a good 20 minute bikeride from our dormitory). However, after we had been driving for a long time, and with what the girls had been talking about, it appeared as if we were going to Nagashima Spaland! SUGOI! And Mami had discount tickets, so everyone only had to pay 1000yen (usually 3000yen) for tonnes of waterslide-fun! Since this was mine and Ben’s 2nd time here, we knew which slides to go on, and which not to waste our time with… but we were also with a couple girls who weren’t so eager to go on all the slides. We didn’t want to make anyone feel left out, but we wanted to have fun… taihen. When we had come before, for Patrick’s birthday, we had also gone on the rollercoasters. Recently, the Steel Dragon (the massive rollercoaster that holds 4 guiness world records), had an accident – so we were really lucky we got to go on it – it was not running, anymore. We were also very lucky the girls took us to the waterslides that day, because it was the last day of the season.

The enjoyable day melted into evening, as Ben and I both bought takoyaki makers, and we all went for yakiniku. Yakiniku is when you order meat and you cook it on a grill in the middle of the table. It’s awesome! However, I think Mayu was feeling a little crazy, and ordered a HEAPING CRAPLOAD OF MEAT!! We were already full by the time we still had 4 full plates of raw meat mocking us. That night, we eventually defeated the meat, but in the end, it was the meat that won. I don’t want to see another piece of meat for at least a week.

so much.. meat….


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