April 16 - 2007

Japan, demo tour

 Japan, demo tour

I’m in Japan for a North Demo tour.
Hard to wake up at 8 am (1 am in France), Japanese breakfast , miso soup, various things that I do not know, with crazy taste taste sometimes difficult to make pass at the breakfast.

Small turn at the North distributor office to take flags, boards, kites, barbeccues…
Then we hit the road for Enoshima, approximately an hour and half of Tokyo.

Enoshima it is almost an island, dedicated to the love… all in top of the island, there is a temple where we can leave messages for people that we love (see photo).
I escaped during 2 hours with my camera, I benefited from the sun to test my new toy. Then we prepared the festival for tomorrow, the weather announces wind!!
Program tomorrow, demo, barbecue and party… hope to manage the jet lag.

The wind was shy yesterday, 10 knots maximum, some kite in 16 meters, some did stand up paddle, for others surfing, windsurfing, boating, fishing…

The Japanese people do sports, the sea is full, not place for chilling.
I took some picture, spoken kite, trips, tricks… and I even gave courses of kite on the beach.

It’s good to see all the people that i met last year.
As its practice, Bingo is set up (last year I won rather quickly but I did not have the right to win the North prize), I cheating a bit (with as excuses that I have a little problem to understand the numbers), whereas my neighbors are concentrated on the following number.

Prize are board bags, a board, a harness… I did not dare to say Bingo to my humble opinion the 3/4 of the numbers were not out yet.

I woke up, large sun, no wind, and 3000 people on the water.
Gradually the wind raised, a little more extremely than yesterday, I went kiting in 20 meters.
Slalom between the windsurfers, the surfers, the boats, the fishermen we would need limit of the red lights.

Then I took again my camera, worked a little the blurs, some played the models, and was quickly caught with the play while crossing 50 times the road…
Signing session, small restaurant with everyone and it is already the hour of “goodbye”.
Tomorrow,we set out again to Tokyo. The programm is, visits shops and especially spare time to visit all alone Tokyo before leaving Thursday for the Lake Biwa.
Hashi the North distributor entrusted to me to Machado one of these North riders Japan for the three days to come. Machado does not speak too much English, one communicates with the gestures, and some Japanese and English words.

I learned all the day some basic word in Japanese, which will help me for the weeks to come, of very from way I do not have the choice and it is so much better like that.

We began the day by visiting a shop which distributes North, coffee, discussion, signing…

We visit Kamakura, capital of Japan between 1185 and 1333, we find there 65 temples Buddhist, and 14 sanctuaries shintoïsts (two principal Japanese religions). We visited two temples, whose most outstanding “Daibutsu”, that temple is overhung by a statue of the Buddha Amida (divinity of the salvation) for 14 meters in height.

In April it’s the period of the “Sakuras”(cherry blossoms) and this is quite simply splendid (cf picture).
O sewa ni narimashita Machado!!!
Back in Tokyo, I slept in a gigantic hotel (I lose myself every 10 minutes) with a nice view on Yokohama, it is splendid.

The breakfast reflect the place, a large dresser, composed of a multitude of thing, most of them that i don’t know. It is initially a pleasure for the eyes, the forms, the colors, the presentation all is done in harmony, with small quantities, the fine mouthfuls… a treat, even if in final it is rather difficult to swallow for my European stomach.

I can’t wait to kite… please wind!! Machado came to pick me up, a small hour of road, ( 20 new words to learn), and we arrived at the spot, small 10 nds on Shore.

The restaurant before riding is essential (still full from the breakfast), we will eat with a couple of Japanese, Sao and her husband, Nobody speaks English at the table, I learned 3000 words in 1 hours (finally..i retain of it a 15)..the wind start to pick up, the first kites are in the air and of my chair I can see them moving in the bay.

12 meters Vegas, wetsuit (hard), and directly in the water, nice sun, and lot of friends, the essential ingredients to pass good after midday.

Everyone is going for the best, jumping in all directions, the camera panic… I went out of the water with a big smile and a seagrass of miso soup on the head.

Restaurant (again) they bring me in a Japanese traditional place. On the table there is a hotplate, and we prepare our own food. Quite simply delicious, that quickly heats the cold day in the water.

I have the feeling to be at Disneyland here, the children are full of toy, always spirit to laugh, like small mangas, well dressed (especially the small girls, they shout and laugh with a rather acute voice). The adults are not remains about it, I went in an enormous store of electronics (not that one of Tokyo, I go there tomorrow) to buy a tripod for the camera, there is so much gadget that I will pass days here: accéssories for ipod, cameras, computer… the adults have all small thing hang on their mobile phone, hearts, lucky stuff, manga… Tokyo as any city which is respected is more speed, but the remainder of the country for the little which I saw look very “Zen”.

Small stress this morning when i wake up, I was looking for my credit cards, impossible to find it..Hashi (thanks) will find them at the objects found at the airport..that makes nevertheless a week, all is inside, even bills… that does like that to Japan, when we went kiteboarding everyone leaves all open, even the open large trunk with all the stuff inside, at the restaurant the Japanese women to reserve their place leave their bag at a table, will order then return, leaving the bag without monitoring…

Machado (North rider) take me to the complete tour of Tokyo, while starting with Shibuya, small visit photo on the famous crossroads, it takes full the eyes of them, of the vidéos on the lathes balance musical clips, I have like the impression to be in the film minority report.

Then Tokyo Tower, (Japanese Eiffel Tower) 333meters, we went on top of it, it was splendid.

Then we went to electronic city. Without credit card it’s better i think, if not I think that I will have to crack for some lenses, some gadgets, a small Plasma screen of 6 meters, a massing seat which make me sleep in 8 minutes…

A friend joined us, her and Machado offered me stickers with my Japanese name to me above, and the drawing of the famous wave with the Fuji mount in bottom, that touched me a lot.

After I had the bad idea to want to buy a pair of shoes, I found the model immediately, but for the size… in fact I make of the 44, that is to say of the 28 Japanese, the biggest size proposed in the stores it is of the 28, in short I never found. On the other hand I bought socks or the toes all are separated, like a glove. I had a little evil to put it, but it is super comfortable.

Each day in Japan I eat something different, the Japanese kitchen is so vast that the sushi is a very small aspect. I regaled myself still well, of pastes, fish, meats, tofu, vegetables, some UFOS (impossible to know what it is…), of seagrass, soup, and sake.

To look at people in the street it is a spectacle with whole share, costume tie, with the most eccentric things, we finds everything. The Japanese women are very pretty, often out of short skirt, with socks on top of the knee, and of the high shoes.

Tomorrow departure for Kyoto, then Biwa for the demonstration of the week end, I make my list of thing to do, like going to Gion, famous for Geishas (the famous book “Geisha” tells the history of the one of it in Gion)…

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Japan, demo tour

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