Sunday, October 7, 2007

Lesson Four: Standard Equipment

I got my bike fixed up and ready to go about 6 this eve. It was about dark, Anne had to leave the house for a few hours and I wanted to go for a ride. Anne told me where a park was, the old Olympic park of 1964, told me there was a 2k path around the park and said it would be safe. Good enough for me. On the way there I met a woman feeding cats. She spoke English enough to tell me that she was feeding and trying to spay and nueter 50 cats and had had a garage sale all weekend to raise money. I was able to pet a few catties and then of course gave a minor donation and was on my way. Got to the park and it was crowded. Japanese crowded. People everywhere, going every which way. The first thing I do is run into somebody`s dog who had walked out in front of me. (No worries mates, no damage done.) I was grateful for the language barrier. Not 3 minutes down the path someone else pulls out in front of me on a bike. Alright I think, I`ll start saying something. I clear my throat. They don`t notice. I say " on your left"( oh yeah they understood that). I say "hi". Well that means yes in Japanese, so that doesn`t work. None of it was working very well. Then I noticed they were all using bells. "Chit", I thought, I should have bought one of those. So I start saying "ding ding". People are everywhere remember. I am quite often saying " ding ding". This works but people are looking at me funny. (I don`t have a bell alright? No bell.) A half hour of "ding ding" goes by and I think " I am definitely getting one of those bells". I had seen a Hello Kitty bell at the shop earlier and I thought about getting that one " ding ding ". I thought about when I would have time "ding ding" to go back to the shop. One more purchase and I would be ready "ding ding " for the road. As I was thinking all this, I started to relax on my bike "ding ding" and explore it`s gears and gadgets. It was dark and I was fumbling around. I found a reflector and decided it should be on the back of my bike, I found the shifter cable and thought maybe I should adjust it for easier shifting, then I found this little black ball with a lever. I hit the lever...."ding". Oh. Ding ding:standard equipment.


Deb B. said...

hey Tracy --- Did you ever read that book Eat, Pray, Love which is true story about woman who took a year off to travel? That woman was on Oprah Friday. Your blogs are so great, maybe you should consider writing a book too.

Anonymous said...


Wow, I just read your entire blog! Thats the most reading I've done in a year! You should be a writer! Sounds like you are having a blast! Keep up the stories! It's better than TV.

The Towanda's miss you!


Anonymous said...

Hey trace! Need a photo of toilet. Can't picture it. Air if we can order one of those.

I am still laughing at ding ding how funny your stories ding are ding. Bow, thank you, bow.

You are in the land of Haiku now. We will try to compose an appropriate one. Have to stop laughing long enough though...


cindylist said...

Tracy in Japan
tall blond up-ends bikes and more
they won't forget you

You are tooooooo funny, my friend! It's SO good to hear from you - I'm glad you found a friendly computer! How are your Japanese-speaking skills coming along? It figures you would find the caretaker of the local F'd-up Catty Farm.

bells are ring-dinging
Tracy's bike basket is full
of cats to bring home

Anonymous said...

Hi Tracy, listening to you reminds me of how big the world really is...we are settling with Winton home from deployment in la la land of Coronado. So excited to read your experiences...its amazing that even a toilet moment or one 2k ride in a park can be so eventful...just think, how many more months of experiences are ahead of you! Great to hear fromyou!
miss you very much, love Kara

Anonymous said...

Found myself lol at your commentary..."ding ding".
Thanks for that. - Judy