I started this year by flying, as I have so often, here to Japan where I met up with Susan, Kuma-san (with wife and little one in tow!), Riko, Tiffany & Michelle for various meals before meeting up with Nancy, freshly back from Germany, in Saitama. Enjoyed my first karaoke (well, I didn’t peel the paint off the walls, or scar her, at least) and sweets viking, and then indulged in our first Granrodeo show of the year, at the Saitama Super Arena. We got to scream our lungs out when they called for foreign fans (even if it was someone in a bikini who got the nod on the DVD later) and generally have a good time.
The rest of January into February was a blur, a whole lot of nail-biting waiting for the funding to come in so Edanz could extend a job offer. But finally, a little less than a week before I headed back to Japan for part two of the big Granrodeo shows, the offer came. I went from rock bottom to over the moon in a matter of hours, and haven’t looked back since….
That second trip, to Nagoya and Osaka, with a last day in Tokyo, turned out to be more wintry than I prefer. I managed to come in between two big rounds of snow, and the weather largely curtailed my sight-seeing. I ended up spending one snowy/rainy day in Nagoya in the Aeon mall and main train station (indulging in a Valentine’s chocolate fair), and on another cold one, visiting a chocolate exhibit with Nancy and her friend Linda (where we ran into talento Lola, who was there with a film crew). Met up with Shaina in Osaka for a quick run through Namba (the Animate and Namco Granrodeo displays) and the memorable Granrodeo show at Osaka-jo Hall. In Tokyo I met up with Riko for tea, though Harrods, darn them, was closed because of the previous week’s snow. (It took until September to get that particular tea.)
Back in the U.S., my energy turned towards coming to Fukuoka, which mainly meant prying my fingers from my possessions….
Next: March madness and April travels~