For the first time in the almost four years that I have lived here I went bowling. It is a weird accomplishment. I am not such a huge bowling person that I would seek out an alley and go play by myself, but bowling was a pretty regular part of my social life when I was in high school. I don’t think I bowled even once in college and it is not something I miss if I’m not doing it. However, when I found out that all the other ALTs in my city had gone bowling together a few days ago, I will admit, I felt left out. It’s important to note that I was not purposefully excluded.
Every week, most of the ALTs in my city attend an English conversation night in Nobeoka, the next city to the north. As it’s on the same night as taiko practice, I have only been able to attend three times, times when taiko practice was cancelled for some reason or when I couldn’t go to practice because I was on crutches. Everyone had spontaneously decided to go bowling after English night. However, I found out about this later and when Chris realized how frustrated I was that things like this keep happening, he kindly decided to organize another bowling trip, this time with more people included.
As it was my first time, I did not know what to expect. For the most part, bowling in Japan is just like bowling in America, with a few changes.
- You don’t put your name into the scoreboard yourself. They do that for you at the front desk.
- No cute animations when you get a strike or spare. Also, no music videos or anything playing on the tvs in between the scoreboards.
- Most importantly of all: shoe vending machines
The sizes are written on the machines and then you just push the dispense button. Bam! Bowling shoes.
After bowling three games we went to dinner at our favorite Indian restaurant. It was a nice change of pace from my regularly scheduled Sunday programming.