It’s cherry blossom time, the beginning of spring, but the chill in the air still tugs at winter’s coat-tails. It rained last night, and now a breeze troubles the branches. The ground is carpeted with pale petals that are soft underneath my feet, and I feel like a king. Yesterday, we sat on blue tarpaulin under the cotton candy canopy; we drank beer and ate fried soba to welcome in the new season. The cherry blossoms are always the start of something new.
A fading trail of petals leads me down into the subway station where I wave my pass at the ticket gate. The gate waves me through without pause, and as I go, it gently reminds me I have seven hundred yen remaining. I love this technology; but you can’t go far on seven hundred yen.
There’s no blossom in the subway station. It’s not allowed.
A train is approaching as I descend to the platform. The tunneled air has nowhere else to go and rushes up the stairs: I fight against the draught. A woman in front of me holds on to her skirt and her handbag and her umbrella, barely. Her feet are too close together; her knees almost touch as she walks; she’s as awkward as a pondless duck. Her umbrella slips and clatters on the steps. I swoop and grab it and tuck it under her wing, and she smiles, but I can see she’s embarrassed.
I take the train to Dupont Circle, then follow the cherry blossom petals to the edge of the Tidal Basin, where Senator Randiman meets me. The floor of his limousine is carpeted with pale petals. We drink champagne and drop a hit of acid while his driver looks away discretely.
The Mayflower Hotel beckons, waving us up to the room that has been rented for an hour. I swipe his credit card. I love this technology; $2000 plus tip is added to my account, to be converted to yen at a favorable exchange rate.
The Cherry Blossom Pink condom slips from his awkward grasp and I grab it. If he thinks he's getting anything without using it, he's sadly mistaken.
Opening: anon?.....Continuation: mignon