Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Writer's Life is Boring

We saw two more Noh plays yesterday, a shorter piece that was mostly dance, and a longer piece that was quite lovely, and kept putting me to sleep. This happens sometimes with Noh, and I've learned not to fight it too much. It's impossible to sleep through the flute, regardless, and sometimes it feels more like meditation than napping.
The sun was out a little so I managed a walk in the morning, down the street past what I'm told is the local Zen temple and more or less "around the block" and back to the hotel. With a stop at the 100 yen store - again. This time I found something I've wanted since my last trip - big clips, like giant clothespins for holding comforters to a railing to be aired out.
The neighborhoods here, the streets off of and behind the main streets, are small alleyways, but very active, full of houses, of course, but also schools, small grocery stores and other little businesses. It feels, at least to me, like the real life of people going on.
The theater we attended yesterday was in Shibuya, an amazingly busy crowded part of the city. Sort of like Times Square on the busiest day you can imagine, with more shopping. The trip required us to go through two of the busiest train stations in Tokyo (the guidebook tells me Shinjuku station is the second busiest in the world).
I left the group early and made my way back to the hotel by myself. For me, this is always a step toward being comfortable when I travel - knowing I'm OK with the public transportation. Tokyo is actually pretty easy since the signs and most of the announcements are in English.
Now comes the boring part. At 5 p.m. I went back to my hotel room, slept a few hours and wrote for the rest of the night. I'm told there is karaoke in the plans for this evening, so I can make up for the one boring night.
Two more Noh plays today, at the National Noh Theatre.

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