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Mike's Japan

You enter through a side door and are relieved to discover that the lighting is
dimmed and there is no reception desk. A mechanical voice greets you and a flashing
machine asks for your credit card. The prices are a bit steep and you wonder if you
can get a loan from your father. You could say you need it to buy books. At any rate,
you are not going to bail out now. You are with the hottest chick in town and there’s no
turning back.
Your companion points to a picture of a 1950s car. The price is mid-range and you
hastily prod the picture before her fancy turns to something more expensive. The
picture fades and a message appears saying you have successfully comp leted the
transaction. Your credit card is returned. Lights flash on the floor and illuminated
arrows guide you to your room.
A shining automobile stands on a thick shag carpet. You take a step forward and
the air is filled with the sound of Elvis. You take another and the vehicle opens up .
The roof lifts back and the seats unfold to form a double bed.
Condoms hang in packets from the windscreen. Your companion reaches towards
them. They come in different sizes and she wants to know which to pick. You are
tempted to say Jumbo but have been warned about the perils of a loose fit. Slim is the
manufacturer's way of saying Small. There’s no way you are going to say Slim. That
leaves Standard. Then she asks about flavour. That’s something you hadn’t thought
of and you are struggling for a reply when she chooses Peppermint.
Buttons on the dashboard have to be set before you begin. There’s a selection of
1950s records. You choose Rock Around the Clock and go on to the next step . It’s
worse than downloading a file from the internet. There’s always something else to be
done. You set the humidity control, adjust lighting and choose a suitable gear. The
overhead camera has to be positioned and you're fiddling with it when you feel a cheek
on your thigh and smell peppermint.
PS: An Australian friend claims to use love hotels because they are cheaper. He
reckons the down-market, no-frills joints have a better bed price than normal hotels .
That’s because they don’t make money from beds but from the “massage” services
they provide. As he says, there’s no obligation to use these services. If there was, the
hotels would be classed as brothels and the licensing fees would be far higher. He
does admit that, on one occasion, he was turfed out of bed in the middle of the night by
some heavily tattooed guys who said his time was up and he had to go.
PS: The charming couple in the pic at the top are tanukis. They belong to the
raccoon family and are famous for their love life. They are a Japanese version of the
Easter Bunny but not as cuddly.
13. Yakuza