Ragged Clown

It's just a shadow you're seeing that he's chasing…


This side of Nagasaki (day 3)

[story is a little out of sequence due to international dateline]

Woke up this morning feeling only slightly fragile and, with my three dinners of the night before fully digested, I was ready to make an attempt on the World Breakfast Record. I had miso, nearly raw egg – just the yolk – in a cup of soy sauce, mandarin slices in yoghurt, bacon, sausages, penne w/ white sauce, smoked salmon, pieces of fruit, coffee and my special patented hangover-repelling blend of orange and tomato juice. All while being watched over by Mount Fuji.

JeffAfter breakfast, we headed off to the Developer Summit for the main feature of the week – my presentation on Continuous Integration.

The room was packed – hundreds of people – and I broke the rule about not making jokes to international audiences. I told them how the presentation was s’posed to be given by Jeff (see picture) and that he always gives the presentation dressed in his super-hero costume. I had asked to borrow his costume but he wouldn’t let me have so I had to wear ordinary clothes. He let me give his presentation but he wouldn’t let me wear his super-hero costume. It’s not fair.

It’s a good way to figure out how many people in the audience speak English. After I told the joke about 10 people laughed and then the rest laughed after the translation. Helped me relax a bit anyway.

Something that didn’t help me relax was the official photographer who was totally in my face with her camera while I was speaking. Close up of my nose and ears. Both sides. Up high. Down low. I just hope I can find a copy to show Tom that I am not making all this up and I really did go to Japan.

The translator was excellent. I enjoyed listening to her more than I enjoyed speaking. I wanted to ask her what the Japanese word for bubbling was but she disappeared before I got a chance. It sounded something like bibbety-bobbety-boo.

It’s kinda nice speaking with a translator actually. You get a handy pause while she translates, to think a little bit about what you are going to say next, instead just rambling inanely like I usually do.sushi

You know without me telling you that we ate well in the evening. Tempura, at a tiny place with room for about 10 people sitting at the bar while Master, as Mirek called him, cooked up the tempura one piece at a time.

tempuraYou could make a fantastic food movie just by following Jeff and Mirek around for a week. Subtle, traditional decor and lots of significant moments and motions like carefully presenting the cooked tempura just so or applying just the right amount of sauce.

tempuraMaster looked like an international man of mystery. If James Bond had come and sat down next to us – and he wouldn’t have been out of place – Master would have known how to make his Martini shaken not stirred, and would have saved 007 from a ninja attack using skills he picked up in World War II.

The hostess too – Master’s wife – was straight from central casting. No English. Beautiful kimono. Exquisitely polite.

Early night after the tempura and no hangover the next day! Hooray!