Yesterday was a pretty damn fine birthday. The plan had been to meet with people and go to Suma beach at 12:30, then come back to Osaka, have a rest, go to yakiniku around 9:30 for cheap beers and meeting more people, then off to Round One for batting cages and other amusement.

What actually happened was that no one got in touch with me about anything, so it ended up being just me, Steve and Rob going to Suma beach (this turned out for the best.) And, we didn't get there til about 3:30. The beach was deserted and dirty and we felt like we were going to mutate after being in the water. But a nice bit of relaxing.

After the beach, the three of us stopped off in Chinatown in Kobe before coming home, where we had snacks and Rob and Steve bought me a slightly disconcerting (though finally amazing) birthday present.

We played cards all the time on the train and by the time we got back to Osaka there was no way we could make the 9:30 yakiniku start. We scrubbed away the nasty, then met up with Benny (aka Walrus), Jake and Stacey at the station, headed into Namba where we met up with Nadja, and went to yakiniku where we were joined by Des, Luke, Adam, Hannah, Bird and Saori. Good times, laughs and beer. Then just before leaving, my birthday present from the boys came out: Magical sexy lizard booze. There is an actual lizard in the bottle and it is supposedly an aphrodisiac (with one 3-some credit just within our group of friends.) Most of us took a shot, then headed out to Round One.

The group for Round One was cut down to me, Nadja, Steve, Rob, Walrus, Jake, Saori and Des. I spent a bunch of time in the batting cages. Naj and Des did a lot of karaoke. Jake, Saori, Ben and Rob played some bowling. There were also random bouts of pool and ping-pong. A damn fine time all around. The last group standing was down to me, Steve, Walrus, Jake and Saori. We got on the train for home at around 6AM. And Walrus, who is a real soldier, had to work at 10:50.

Not a bad time at all.