Life is full of strange surprises. One thing I would not expect to happen is to meet up with a whole group of Polish and Slovakian guys in Japan, especially not in a small city like Hamamatsu. Well, there we were, about 7 of us (apparently there’s some more, but they were off sleeping or something…). When you get any number of Slavik people together there’s one thing you can be certain will happen: copious amounts of alcohol will be consumed. I met a few of them playing frisbee while I was out taking photos last weekend, and they invited me to this Australian bar I had never yet been to , despite receiving like 20 previous invitations from random people. So off I went and had a few (ok, many) beers. Then we went to meet with some more people near Shizuoka University, which is as best I can tell about a 40 minute walk (during which we bought yet more beer at the convenience) from the city center. At least there’s no turns so it’s fairly easy to find for reasonably drunk people.
Near the university we all hung out at an Izakaya and drank even more beer, as well as ate some food. if you want to picture something strange, imagine an Izakaya with a room full of caucasian guys all speaking Polish and Slovakian. We stayed at the Izakaya until (after) closing, the employees had a hard time getting rid of us and I believe at many times actually looked frightened. If you want to picture something else strange, imagine an Izakaya full of Polish and Slovakian guys speaking (or attempting to speak) Japanese.
Myself and two of my friends went our separate way while everyone else rode (or drunkenly attempted to) home on their bicycles. My friends walked me back to where I could simply walk down the road back to the city, and on the way decided it would be a good idea to get me some more beer! So I managed to find my way back home by about 4am and promptly fell asleep. I had to evade some incredibly insistent prostitutes who refused to leave me alone despite my attempts to get rid of them by saying I have no money, sheesh.. some people.
When I first met these guys and they told me they studied at the university here I assumed they were all student like me. However, last night I discovered that all of them are PhD students in wild topics like plasma physics and photonics.
So yeah, drinking with a bunch of Slavik PhD students at an Izakaya in Japan. Not what you’d expect.