Last night, we went to Ingrid's.
Em and I went for something safe to sing:
Ingrid's is located in Sakae-machi, which is one of the most atmospheric and alive places in Tokushima city. It's a series of narrow alleys off Akita-machi, and along with that street houses the majority of the drinking establishments in town. When the sun sets, these streets begin to come to life. They fill with students and other young people going for drinks with their friends, with salary-men and other professionals having after work drinks and "nijikais" ("second parties" after official work functions), with hosts and hostesses soliciting on street corners, yakuza types going about their secret business, and the occasional drunk vomiting or urinating up against a building. Tis truly a magical place.
Walking down Sakae-machi late at night you see this dance playing out all the time. You see snack bar girls come outside as a customer is leaving, lamenting his early departure and ensuring his return in the not-too-distant future. The customer, who may have a wife at home, says goodbye, fawning over the lady and not caring about the 10,000 yen un-itemised bill he just paid that has taken advantage of his inability to remember how much he actually drank. Some say this kind of thing is the result of a lack of communication between spouses and friends, and fills that particular void in the Japanese lifestyle. I find it fascinating, but also a little frightening.
While we're on the subject of the seedy, there's this: