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Dr John Hawkins

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Posted on 2006/12/22 17:36:35 (December 2006).

[Thursday 14th December]
Tonight was the night for my soubestsukai - the "official" leaving party with the people I (used to) work with. This was held at a very Japanese style restaurant by the station nearest to the office. It had been a long running theme that on these work nights out we'd go somewhere very Japanese which had no real concept of vegetarian food, and I was strangely reassured that tonight was not an exception. In fairness they did seem to get their act together about half way through the meal, perhaps the chefs changed shifts or something, and the food went from the "no large identifiable chunks of flesh" school of vegetarian cookery, to something I would actually be prepared to eat with a fairly clear conscience.

Naturally there was the usual giving of presents etc, and I was also asked to make a speech, which I realised I was totally unprepared for. Given that I'd basically not had all that great a time working at that office, it was somewhat hard to come up with a spontaneous monologue like this, but I think I more or less struggled through.

The soubetsukai finished fairly early - around 8:30, after which most of my colleagues went home. However a few did stay on for a bit longer. Initially we went to a café/bar called "Buns", in which fellow Englishman Tim became quite animated about the fact that their default beer was Budweiser, which we didn't realise until we'd ordered it. He actually confiscated the glasses from us, and wouldn't let us drink any.

Then we rounded off the evening with one last bout of karaoke - "for old time's sake". I found Gloria Gaynor's "I Will Survive" to be highly apt for the situation, especially the line "I should have changed that stupid lock", which I rather skilfully (or so I thought) rendered as:

I'm glad I changed my !%$£^ job.

Probably I was the only person present who really appreciated this improvised piece of lryical inspiration though.

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