The Yen Run: All you can drink (II)

Shibuya, 9PM. Meet-up event in some underground all-white art studio. Tens of white old men properly dressed, most of them suited up, all of them hitting on Japanese women half their age. And, amidst all of this, my friend and I demolishing all the sushi. Free sushi and beer. It was our first time in such event, so the host allowed us to enjoy the party free of charge. Hopefully we will find more events at which we are first-timers. When all the sushi was gone, we started making some friends. It sounds horrible, but we met this old man who wanted to go all out that night, so we invited him to join us for our next stop, a rooftop party in Koenji, a hundred and fifty yen west of Shibuya. Everything went as meanly planned, and this gentleman bought us some Sapporo beer. Sapporo is typically the most expensive beer brand in any supermarket, and so when Mr. Old-Man said he would pay for the beer, I knew we were finally trying Sapporo! I could afford this beer in a life-or-death situation, but it completely overshoots my humble weekly budget. And the euro is still going down versus the yen as of today. This is probably the least interesting entry of this blog.

The rooftop party was great, full of international and national people. It is a music studio during daylight, so as an underground music lover I really liked the idea, since discovering and indulging in the Tokyo rock scene basically headlines my Japan bucket list. The bathroom-ward hallway is decorated with many hanging elegant Stratos and endless live event flyers. Of course, Koenji is a far shot from our home in the bloody countryside, but it was good to finally start finding places like this. I am definitely coming back there some day, hopefully without writing an “all you can drink” entry a posteriori, if you know what I mean… All in all Shibuya is frantic, intense and cozy at night, with countless avenues and streets full of life. Despite how exciting it is, though, it takes lots of monies to get there, so most of the time we will have to party regionally.

A few evenings ago we ended up in some nomihoudai in downtown Machida, a neighbouring city with a decent nightlife that we have to explore more (and we will, because we are poor, poor fellas). One wonderful friend of mine decided -after fifteen strong drinks or so- to go find a convenience store, because apparently his body needed more beer to function properly, so we lost sight of him. After finding him and catching the last train home we all realized he had forgotten his phone in Machida, so a hard and terrible decision was taken that the phone had to be recovered as soon as possible, and that meant taxi, and that meant lots of monies. It took about an hour to reach our place, entering through the backdoor not to let the guard catch my not-so-sober friend, and the fucker woke up thinking everything was awesome because he had found his phone in his bedroom. I had to ruin his day early in the morning by telling about his debt of 5,700 yen that the taxi driver had charged us.

All you can drink, or nomihoudai, seems to be a word that every foreigner knows around here (kimono, samurai, sake, …), but unless we keep getting invited to certain events, I believe it might be time to face the truth and admit that we cannot afford any more of this. This next weekend is hanami (flower viewing festival, enjoying the cherry blossoms of the sakura trees), so we will be at Yoyogi Park, which is the place where at least another million Tokyoites will gather.

Asahi and Suntory are the low-cost beer brands, and the ones inhabiting my fridge.

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