Wednesday, 14 November 2012

School festivals, part 2: Kyoujo

Last night we were all finally paid the money we made from our little World Karaage adventure. It turned out to be a startling 4500 yen per person. Now, I am sure I spent at least 2000 enjoying the rest of the festival, put in about ten hours of labour extolling our product's virtues, and went to a 3000-yen nomikai with English Club, but still I have to say that with materials costing 1000 yen this turned out to be quite a high return on my investment.

As I mentioned, we sold out so many times that we elected not to even do the third day. This new opening in my schedule would have been well-spent enjoying the festival some more, but instead an English Club guy and myself decided to check out one from another school, which happened to be running concurrently with our own. The institution in question was Kyouto Joshi Daigaku, that is, Kyouto Girls' University, because how can you say no to that. We talked some big talk about going out to get ourselves some girlfriends, and it was only later that I realised I was the only one who was joking. He did score some e-mail addresses and, apparently, a date, so credit where it's due.
Entering felt like being let inside a secretive enclave, and our first few steps were furtive and tentative, as though we trod upon sacred ground (and in a way I would like to think that we did). Obviously this was my first visit to a joshidai, and I was able to sate my curiosity as to what one is like (answer: basically like any other university.) I had also been wondering where the male teachers and staff go when they need to piss; it turns out that there are roughly as many mens' bathrooms as womens', which I guess is nice, if spatially wasteful.

Some of the students did have me wishing I could attend the school myself, making me wonder, as I often do, if you were a lesbian, wouldn't a joshidai (or joshikou) be fucking paradise? This, in turn, raises the question of just how many lesbians and bisexuals are present on campus? Did they choose the university because of the array of possible partners, or for other reasons? If they did come here looking for love, how easily are they able to find it? Is the dormitory a continuous sapphic orgy? Do they steal a sideways glance every now and then in the changerooms, and would the straight girls around them mind if they knew?
 There was a haunted house for some reason, which struck me as just slightly out of season. This sign warns that the club putting it on will not be held responsible for any relationship troubles that may arise (what?).
 No touching the girls!
 They're voting on a new mascot. I like 21 and I think it makes thematic sense, but 19 is also cool. What do you guys think?
 You get a couple of one-yen coins and have to drop them into one of those shot glasses. (If you're not aware, one-yen coins are incredibly light, so this is much more challenging than it would be to drop in, say, a penny.) You're supposed to turn the coin sideways or put both of them together so that their combined weight will allow you to make a straight shot, but I instead let mine manically swing back and forth before striking the inside of the target and settling. Did it in one try, too. Just saying.
 Kyoujo has an English Club, too! My buddy spent some time making nice with them. I think he was 10% trying to forge ties between the clubs, 90% trying to pick up one of the girls.
 Traditional dance type thing. Pretty cool that they can set up a little grandstand like this, eh?
 Visual Kei bands played inside Kyoujo Hall all day long. You can't see, but the drummer, Mao-chan, is pretty cute. Really missed an opportunity there.

 Like I say, things gets pretty lively! Gender lines were pretty even except for the occasional sea of girls, and me the only foreigner in sight.
 There's anko baked inside. I also had some deep-fried ice cream.
 Yeah, they put an awful lot of effort into beautification.
The Shoudou Club room was unattended but had some stuff laid out so everybody could do some collaborative artwork type stuff. Let's Try indeed.
 "I want a Kyoujo girlfriend." "Me too!"

 "Hatsukoi," first love. I signed my work after; considered leaving my e-mail address and a solicitation as well, but thought better of it.
 "Kyoujo girls are all so cute."
 While dicking around in the Shoudou room we met a couple of girls with whom we then spent the rest of the day. They were traditional dancers of some description, hence the footwear.

One stall was selling pork buns, and if you bought one you got to take a picture with literally about twenty hot Kyoujo girls decked out in full cosplay brocade, from standard nurses and maids to more animeish stuff. I tried to demur but somehow got dragged into the chaos...I can only imagine what they must have thought of the pathetic skinny white boy in their midst, this lucky loser enjoying a once-in-a-lifetime chance. Which is why I tried to demur.

 Receive a ticket every time you buy something. Collect five and you get to pull for a prize. I ended up with a lot more than five. No surprises there.
 I won two of the same thing: A couple 2-litres of cold coffee. I'm not too sure how to react to that.
 Sadly, the day had to end at some point. The school is serviced by the "Kyoujo Princess Bus Line." It...yeah.