Too Kind

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Didn’t get a whole lot done during the day, but had another going away party in the evening. This time it was thrown by the Board of Ed. staff in the main city office. After having the award ceremony for us and the meet and greet with the mayor, council chair and vice-chair it seems very kind.

We met at Plaza Doushin (プラザ洞津), a meeting hall near my home. Recently I found out why so many school functions are held here: it is owned by the teachers’ union. We ate in the first floor restaurant. Usually seating arrangements are very precise at B of E functions, so we were surprised when they told us we could sit anywhere. Later the pieces started to fall into place, when we realized some of us were allowed to sit anywhere (on this side of the table) and others, anywhere (on that side). Those of us being honored sat on the first side and other teachers sat on the other side.

With our meals we had nomihoudai (飲み放題), which should best be translated as “all you can drink”. I am surprised at how many places provide this service. I was thinking that most places in America have laws against this to reduce overconsumption, but maybe bars don’t do it because overconsumption would eat their profits. A number of beers were ordered, so we got to see an amazing machine in operation.

The beer pouring machine has a cradle that holds a mug at an angle to reduce foaming. Just that wouldn’t be so fascinating, but as the beer nears the top the cradle smoothly swings down. Finally, I think the machine increases the gas charge to create a creamy head. When the server disappeared some of the bolder teachers decided to use it themselves. I was tempted, but I was more interested in chatting with the soon-to-be former boss.

After dinner we headed for the karaoke box closest to my home and sang up a storm. Amusingly, most of the songs were in Japanese. Even the teachers who can’t speak much Japanese have learned a song or two. What a wonderful send-off; it gives me confidence that nobody is harboring ill will over my resignation.

One thing perplexed me about the guest list. There are about 60 assistant language teachers in the city. There were about five teachers other than the guests of honor. Granted, a lot of ALTs don’t want to go to official functions and some of them were taking summer leave; however, most of them wouldn’t pass up a free meal, let alone an all-you-can-drink bar. So, where were they? My guess is only certain teachers got invited, begging the next question, “How do they make the invite list?”

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One Response to “Too Kind”

  1. PLAZA DOHSHIN (HOTEL) Says:

    Dear sir.
    Thank you for use the beer party of this hall and a restaurant lately
    I wait for next use from the bottom of my heart.
    Yours in haste Serious I am sorry in a postscript and the guidance which is a summer festival before.

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