on friday night when yoshi got home, he asked me if i wanted to go to tenjin. he got some tickets to see some displays of flowers from work and wanted to go. i said, sure! why not?

yoshi looked on the internet for the cheapest parking and found a place in tenjin. it only took us about an hour to drive there (well, a little more than an hour since hiroyuki seriously soiled his diaper on the way and we stopped at a bowling alley to change him...) the parking was convenient and it was easy for us to walk around--for only 900 yen! pretty good for the city.

yoshi hadn't eaten breakfast and i only had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, so we went to the IMS building for lunch. we went to a japanese place that has a lot of different kinds of rice; we ordered the cheapest lunch set that included all you can eat rice, dessert and coffee. i brought some udon for hiro, along with applesauce. he ate all the udon and refused the apples and kept screaming for more! yoshi prepared some rice with tea, i added veggies and meat from my lunch, and hiro ate it all. i swear, we must be starving that kid!

in the IMS building there's a place where you can donate (plasma?) for the Japanese Red Cross. yoshi likes to donate there and during the hour he's helping others, i go window shopping. usually in a bookstore. i'm still on the lookout for a kanji book i used in shimane, but i don't think i'm ever going to find it...

after yoshi finished we went to the ikebana exhibit. it turns out that two of his co-workers' projects were on display. all of the flowers were gorgeous, and most of the projects were great, though there were a few weird ones. after looking at all the flowers, i went out. yoshi wanted one more quick peek, so i went over to some folding chairs and sat down. hiro had fallen asleep in the stroller, so i just relaxed. in front of the chairs were some tables; obviously they were doing exhibits of some sort. it just so happened that the next one was an interactive one where anyone could try their and at ikebana. one lady came up to me and asked me if i wanted to do it. then another came up and tried to encourage me. see, i was pretty much the only foreigner who had come to the exhibition and they thought it would be nice to get some pictures of me (!) trying ikebana. they told me that i could take whatever i made home. and i could do whatever i liked (especially american style flower arranging.) hmmmm, well, i said yes but as the time came, more and more people arrived and i started to get nervous. but i really didn't need to worry, the teacher (the first lady who approached me) did most of the work! here is our effort:

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not bad...

then we went home. on our way back to the parking garage we were walking through the make-up kiosks on the first floor. i paused to look at some jewelry and one of the young ladies behind the counter started freaking out about how cute hiro was (he had awakened just as the ikebana finished and i was carrying him.) it was kind of embarassing. yoshi said that hiro was popular among the girls...hahaha.