Every six months or so, I’ve joined a few of my friends for these fabulous dinners held at a lady’ house. At her house she teaches them baking, but one of our friends also teaches the lot of them English from time to time as well. They show their appreciation by hosting these feasts ever so often and we by devouring them. On this occasion, it would be the last such opportunity for several of us in attendance.
By the time that I rocked up, the food was already being brought to the table, and it barely fit. This time around, it looked like we were going to be eating some pizza, cheesy asparagus, a fish dish, and also something with pork bacon. I was already salivating at the thought consuming all this.
The picture above only showed the first round of food, and by now we knew better than to assume that would be all. Of course, we could have have been satisfied with just that, they wanted us plumped up. The amount that came however was well beyond any of our expectations. There was fish salad, melon bread, tea & coffee, strawberry gelato, roll cake, watermelon and certainly another thing or two that I’ve forgotten. In all we feasted for nearly 2 and a half hours, which is just crazy.
The next part of the night was the cultural exchange portion. These dinners usually time out with a minor Japanese celebration and in this case it was Tanabata. This festival was imported from China in 755 but has undergone a couple of changes over the years. There is a whole back story about a princess and some guy who wanted to see each other, but I don’t really feel like copying and pasting from Wikipedia. In the modern iteration of the celebration, people write their wishes on a paper which is then tied to bamboo leaves. This happened at all of my schools as well. We did things just a bit more traditionally by writing our wished on the leaves of some shrub. Once we were done, we sang them The Star Spangled Banner which they followed with the traditional Tanabata song. They also sang us a song about frogs that we tried singing in rounds. It went rather poorly but I threw it on the video anyway.
Translated it means this:
The bamboo leaves rustle,
shaking away in the eaves.
The stars twinkle
on the gold and silver grains of sand.
The five-color paper strips
I have already written.
The stars twinkle,
they watch us from heaven.
By the end we were all very happy and very full. Things were getting late, so it was time to call in the otherwise unseen husband in to take the group photo. As I mentioned, this was the 4th, so I had my patriotism on display, in the most garish way possible. I don’t know why we all made a power fist, but it may have been Jon and I that led the charge. This was the last time that I will be able to eat their plentiful bounty, but it was definitely the best meal yet. I will so miss having these sorts of special events in my life. Even if I get myself up to some fun things at home, it just wont ever be the same as this.