October 14, 2008

A Weekend in Yokohama ~ Friday

Last weekend was a bank holiday weekend in Japan with Monday being "Sports Day". I headed down to Yokohama for a few nights intent on catching a couple of gigs, eating some good food and generally enjoying myself. I succeeded on all three counts and probably now need to do some extra exercise in order to burn off all the weekend excess.

Having checked into a hotel late in the afternoon I soon headed down to the port area. The idea was to get something to eat before heading to the Nicola Conte Jazz Combo gig at Motion Blue, and I originally thought of going to one of the eateries in the Aka Renga Soko (Red Brick Warehouse). However, it turned out that in the space next to the warehouse, there was a huge tent set up for the annual Yokohama Oktoberfest. I'm not sure how long this has been happening, but it seems that they have a Bavarian-style beer festival every autumn, complete with overpriced beer, more sausages and pretzels than you would normally imagine in Japan and an authentic lederhosen-clad German oom-pah band.

I stayed long enough for a couple of pints and a plate full of food enjoying the overall atmosphere and trying avoid being drafted into the ever-growing drunken conga stumbling around the tent. Lots of fun and plenty of very pink-faced and tipsy customers, though I'm not sure what made a couple of Japanese guys think that wearing WWII German military uniforms would be a good costume for the evening.

A bit after 8 o'clock I dragged myself away from the mayhem and wandered the short distance to the Aka Renga Soko and up to a completely different atmosphere in Motion Blue for a superb gig by Nicola Conte (review here ).

Minato Mirai viewed from the Aka Renga Soko.

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