“Do you mind if I drink with you while I wait for my friends? I really hate drinking alone.”
I look at her and then look around the empty bar, think about something for a moment, then I reply.
“Yeah sure, I’m outta here in twenty but feel free to pull up a stool.”
She lets out a sigh of relief and then slides off the stool, actually getting shorter as she reaches the floor; can’t be taller than one hundred and fifty centimeters max with shoulder length dyed light brown hair and a very tight top showing off her cleavage, which unless I am losing touch with things, is enhanced. Then she picks up the bag the bar provides, full of her stuff and comes over to the big round table I’m standing at in the corner under the ceiling mounted flat screen showing Rugby highlights.
She might be half Japanese, half Philippina or Latina. She might also be a prostitute.
“Well, I’m Umi, you know…like the sea.” She says and holds out a tiny hand and I shake it.
“Gaijinass. Nice to meet you Umi. Cheers.” I say and we both pick up our respective drinks, me a double gin tonic with two wedges of lime and her’s, I think, a rum and coke. The glasses lightly clink together.
“So, yeah I hate drinking alone. I guess I’ve been spending too much time outside of Japan. I just can’t sit in a bar alone and drink, even if I’m waiting to meet someone. Feel like a loser, you know?”
She lights a cigarette after I offer her a Cohiba club which she turns down, and I notice some tattoos on her right wrist. I nod at them and ask her. “What’s the deal with those?”
“What do you mean?”
“No. I mean what does it say?”
“Fuerza De Voluntad.” She pulls up the sleeve to her white top and holds up her wrist for me to see. Then, realizes something. “Do you speak Spanish?”
“No. What’s it mean?”
“It means willpower. I got it in rehab. I was in rehab. I used to have a major problem with some serious drugs, like serious ones and well, yeah anyway I got it in rehab and this one…” She pulls her sleeve up more and shows me another tattoo that appears to be a chain of beads running around her arm.
“…and this one is of Japanese beads, like, from Shinto or something?”
I pull up my sleeve and show her the beads I’m wearing. And I ask her what she is up to tonight.
“Yeah, I’m supposed to meet my friend, a girl, and I wanted to get her to meet me here but she’s in Ginza with a client, and she’s a prostitute, not that there is anything wrong with that you know, I’m just saying…”
“Sure, yeah, no problem.”
“…but I think I’m going to meet a client of mine at seven-thirty and then meet her later. Maybe around mid night. What about you? What are you doing? You’re meeting someone right?”
I tell her that I’m meeting up with two friends here and then we are going to FACE club in Kabukichou to see another friend’s Professional Wrestling debut.
“FACE club? Yeah I know that. See actually, I do Muay Thai kickboxing and I’ve seen some friends from my gym fight there. It’s really near by.”
I tell her that’s cool and that I kickbox and I have trained people who have fought at FACE before. She tells me about some of the fighters she knows, none of whom I recognize, and then I mention my gym and some of the people I know and she doesn’t know them either. Then I ask her if she has ever fought.
“Me? No. I do the training fighting, with all the protective stuff on. What’s that called?”
“Yeah, sprawling, I do that. I just do it for exercise. I mean, I will do whatever comes down the pipe: Pilates, Yoga, Muay Thai Kickboxing, Jogging or whatever. I just like to stay fit and keep my figure which is, really, not too hard for me because of my implants. So, I just have to worry about my stomach. It’s way easier.”
I nod knowingly.
Then I bring up what to me seems to be the only possible next question.
“Well, is that safe? What with your implants and all?”
She then cups her hands underneath her breasts and lifts up and together slightly.
“Yeah it’s totally safe.”
“Really? What if you get kicked hard in one? Is that not a problem? I would just assume…”
“No it’s totally fine. The way they are, it’s like a watermelon I guess. If you crack it, nothing comes out. They aren’t like…”
“Exactly! They aren’t like that. It’s all basically foam. So it’s really safe.”
“So, the technology is there these days?”
“Totally there. Actually I got implants a few years ago, then got a reduction because they were too big and killing my back.”
Just then Kenji and Casey show up and I introduce them. They each go to the bar to get drinks and Umi excuses herself and goes to the toilet.
I put another Cohiba club between my lips and light it. The smoke is copious and a Japanese guy in a bright red T-shirt, who had been sitting behind the girl earlier, gives me a dirty look. I just stare at him blankly for a moment and he goes back to his smart phone.
Umi comes out of the toilet and the boys come back to the table with their drinks and a refresher for me. Then Umi, looking uncomfortable, extends her little hand to me again.
“OK guys well, I better get going to meet my friends. It was cool to meet you. Hope you have fun at the wrestling.” I shake her hand lightly. It’s ice-cold and trembling a little.
Kenji looks at her and at me and asks, “What? You’re not going?”
I explain that I just met Umi there at the bar and she doesn’t know LionKing or me for that matter. Casey then looks at her, and then at me and raises an eyebrow.
“Yeah I really have to get going. I mean, I totally would love to go, really, but I have to go.” She says as she reaches into the bag and grabs her coat.
I tell her it’s all good and the tickets are all reserved anyway.
“Yeah but I think I could get in if I wanted.” And she pulls on her coat and shoulders her bag.
A brief yet potently awkward moment passes between the four of us and I finally say, “Well, take it easy Umi. Have a good night. See you around.”
And she waves, smiles bizarrely and leaves the bar through the rear exit.
I turn and Casey and Kenji are both looking at me and I shrug.
Later at the wrestling event I spill a rum and coke zero all over some important documents in my bag but get home at a decent hour despite it all.
It isn’t all mystery hookers and off the top rope:
|Interview with a Dominatrix||Groper Train||7 English loan words that are totally dirty||White woman, Japan sex||Japan’s Nuclear Weapons|