Warning: Long Post Commencing – Settle In
I know I know, it’s taken almost two weeks for me to report on my New Year’s Eve celebrating, but I’ve been uber sick with what I thought was a nasty cold but the cough lingered and did not improve so I gave in and went to the doctor. Bronchitis. Excellent! So, now I’m through the week of antibiotics and while I still have a bit of a cough and runny nose I can now function.
New Year’s Eve was eventful! The husband and I jumped on a train in the early evening to get us up to the Ebisu area (near Shibuya- in Tokyo) around 8:30 pm. We were meeting up with a few people we had met through the pub crawl and British in Tokyo meetup groups. Steph is a funny, pretty lady with a great British accent who teaches English in Tokyo and runs her own Etsy shop selling antique Japanese textiles. Cool right? John is a coworker of Steph and the drummer in the band who was playing to ring in the new year at the pub we would end up at. Gavin is an Aussie with a larger than life personality and doesn’t hold back.
We met up with them at The Hub in Ebisu which is a chain pub, many throughout Japan. Had a couple of drinks then headed down the street to the pub we would party in to 2014. This pub was PACKED! Lots of people, fairly small but we managed well. The opening band was a woman singer/guitar player who sounded quite good or I had enough to drink that she didn’t offend my ears, not sure which.
There was this one older chap leaning against the wall at the end of the bar that was …eccentric, to say the least. Not sure what his story was but I had to get a photo. He stayed there most of the evening, until our friend’s band started up around 11:00 pm. When we all started moving to hover in front of the band – who was really freaking good by the way – Steph and I grabbed Gavin and said, get a photo of us with that guy!
The band played some retro 80’s/90’s rock music and a couple of their own songs, sounded really great. People were dancing and shoving and making general asses of themselves then all of a sudden we had the countdown, did the cheers and kisses and sang the New Year’s song. It was a great time. The husband had messages from some of his department guys who were in Shibuya and for some reason he bailed to go get them and bring them to the pub at this point. Whatever. About half hour later he showed up alone, they had all headed back to Yokosuka. haha… We had a last drink and said our farewells. Time to get ourselves back home. It would be a long train ride, little did we know how long it would be indeed.
Here’s some Youtube of the band, shameless plug for a friend’s band.
Backing up, we considered getting a hotel in Ebisu for this night but we were assured the trains always run all night on New Year’s Eve. Always. Ok, we’ll just head home when we are ready then. No problem right? Here’s how that went:
We got on the train heading for Shinagawa where we would transfer to head South to Yokosuka, this was our normal route. Oddly enough in the train station my friend Izumi was walking towards me saying Happy New Year! What were the chances of running into her! Cool! So we were chatting and she said: Oh, you know you can’t get the train all the way back to Yokosuka right?….. what??!! No! She then said, we have to take the train to Zushi then get a taxi to Yokosuka. This would have been good to know before hand! I’m so glad we ran into her! She was going that way too so we just grouped with her and the two other girls with her. One of her friends (who I had met previously but don’t really know) was COMPLETELY trashed. Apparently, she had drank so much so fast that she puked in the club they were in and her friends carried her out. We’ve all been there at one point or another eh.
So, we kinda nursed her on to the train heading to Yokohama where we would transfer to a train to Zushi. Seemed easy enough. Oh but wait, we also weren’t told before that we would be on a local train. What’s that mean? There are three trains that usually run from Shinagawa to Yokosuka, one is the Rapid Express which only hits main stops, Express which hits a few more and the Local which stops at ALL of the stops. So, instead of the 1 hour or so ride we normally would have, we were looking at a much longer trip. It was about 1:30 am at this point. Oh and did I mention my feet were KILLING me? Yeh, I decided to wear my fancy boots because they are pretty comfortable. Well turns out they aren’t as comfy as I thought. Thankfully, we managed to get our drunk friend in a seat and I found one as well. Ok…settle in. A while later we finally got to Yokohama where we had to transfer and to her credit our drunk friend didn’t get sick once and managed to get to her feet and walk (with help) to the platform.
On the train for Yokohama, found seats again, thankfully. Settled in for another long ride. Izumi said when we get to Zushi we need to run to the taxi because the line will form quickly and if we don’t run we’ll be waiting a long time for a cab. Run??? Seriously? We have a drunk person who can barely stand and me with incredibly sore feet. This should be interesting.
The husband caught a quick snooze on the train and Izumi and I had a few giggles at each other across the train. She’s fun. I woke the husband up as we got closer, cuz you know, we had to run for it. haha
The doors opened and Izumi was off running, us keeping up behind her. We got a pretty good spot and the taxi’s were rotating through pretty quickly, this shouldn’t be too long. I was truly amazed that my feet didn’t become an issue while running, adrenaline I suppose.
We got to the front and said goodbye’s to Izumi and friends as they got into their taxi. She was a life saver!
Our taxi pulled up, we got in and finally sighed with relief and wondering how long of a cab ride this would be. Izumi said it should be about 4,000 yen. I think it came in at about 3,800 or so, not bad really. That’s about $40. The next leg of our race to get home was the real problem.
The taxi had to drop us at the base gate, so we walked on base and to the on base taxi stand, being told by someone there that they are still running. Waiting in the cold and with very sore feet was not fun. Finally, we decided to walk it back to our tower. Worst 20 minute walk of my life. I was cold, my alcohol buzz was gone so my feet were throbbing and I could feel blisters already formed. We walked into our apartment at about 5:00 am. The husband went straight to bed but I couldn’t. I had throbbing legs and feet that had to calm down before I could consider sleep. Took about an hour before I could crash. I was also hungry when we got home and knew my blood sugar was really low. I had been dizzy and a little faint during the walk.
I slept till about noon, not nearly long enough but turned in early that night.
So that was our first New Year’s Eve in Japan! Hope 2014 is exciting, fun and full of adventures, happiness and love.