Japanese-Style BBQ in Hachioji

My friend Toshi drove me, some Hosei kids, and two random Todai girls out to Hachioji for a riverside BBQ.

Toshi’s way-too-cool van. Leather seats, two DVD screens, and the distinct feeling you’re riding in a spaceship.
Pimp My Ride

Road Trip!

Riverbanks are a very popular site for BBQ’s, and even in Tokyo, you can find families and groups of friends hauling flimsy hibachi to the banks of some of the rivers there. The place we stopped had more organization than I expected; they rented BBQ’s out by the day, charged a use fee, and provided charcoal, bathrooms, and stuff. I’ve noticed that whether it’s snowboarding, hiking, or camping, Japan is set up so you rarely have to bring equipment with you when you go outdoors.
Japanese BBQ

Toshi Setting up the BBQ

Eight people, one big bucket of ice-cold beer.
Beeeeeeeerr

Japanese sweet potato (jagaimo) grilled to perfection. Even grilling in slices without any foil, the inside stayed plenty moist.
Jagaymo

Meat roasting over a fire stirs something primal in me.
Digging In

Meatside View

Just having English on a piece of clothing is cool; no one actually knows what it says. The back of this prepubescent girl’s shirt says “Excuses He Is Flirt,” and the back says “Really Not Guilty.”
Engrish 1

Engrish 2

You can read this one for yourself. I really wish I had asked him where he got it.
Engrish 3

On a man-venture, our female companion looking bemused as only british women can.

Adventures

Silly boys

Diving and jumping into water probably too shallow to be diving and jumping into.

Fake-out

Evaluating a Jump

Going for it

Husk of an insect shell. My camera can focus super-close but I have to shove the lens right into the subject. The glass was about half a centimeter away for this shot.

Husk

Otsukaresama! Ready to watch “Letters from Iwo Jima” on the way home.

Ready to Go Home 2

I had a pretty rocking Golden Week, and I’m really not looking forward to school starting back up. It’s not all bad, though- I’m going on an impromptu trip to Shimoda this weekend, then next weekend I’m presenting at Tokyo 2.0 with Ayako from Six Apart, and hitting BarCamp Saturday for some chaos-theory tech conferencing. Never been to a BarCamp before, but the theory sounds nifty:

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Are you still struggling to understand the concept of Barcamp? Maybe understanding Open Space Technology will help:

The four principles of Open Space Technology:

  1. Whoever comes is the right people: this alerts the participants that attendees of a session class as “right” simply because they care to attend
  2. Whatever happens is the only thing that could have: this tells the attendees to pay attention to events of the moment, instead of worrying about what could possibly happen
  3. Whenever it starts is the right time: clarifies the lack of any given schedule or structure and emphasizes creativity and innovation
  4. When it’s over, it’s over: encourages the participants not to waste time, but to move on to something else when the fruitful discussion ends

The one law:
If at any time during our time together you find yourself in any situation where you are neither learning nor contributing, use your two feet. Go to some other place where you may learn and contribute.

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I’m excited. Seats are filled up, and there’s already a waiting list, but if this goes off well, I would certainly imagine it will happen again, and maybe on a larger scale.

Passing thought: Internet in Shimoda is probably going to be spotty, so don’t count on reaching me online until Sunday night. If there’s something urgent and quick, keitai mail is ok.