Samurai In Japan Essay

1480 Words6 Pages
One of the most belligerent and successful samurai warlords, Takeda Shingen, grew up and reigned over the prefecture where I met my wife 400 years later. The Sengoku “Warring State,” 1467 to 1603, was not, as aficionados assume, a world of lasting honor. Loyalties exchanged like yen coins. Ambitious warlords allowed family members to be kidnapped, and murdering young innocents was commonplace. An entire ruling clan, the Taira, was dispatched when rival children, spared rather than extinguished, grew and enacted revenge, finishing off Taira youths. My entry into Japan was accident. I rolled dice on a job teaching English in a Japanese village of 900 in the mountains that hiccuped west of Tokyo. I met my future partner, Yumiko, and Japan…show more content…
Yumiko had waist-length, thick dark hair, olive skin, chocolate eyes, and the lithe body of a gymnast. She spoke English and French, had lived in three countries, and studied philosophy. When I saw her, I wanted nothing but her, became alive in that way only animals know. She had four other suitors that night, one of them a woman. Friends are shocked when I recall the plans I went through to ruin the competition. “Cock-blocking,” it’s called, a parrying of penises. I had never done anything like this before, but I performed out-wooing maneuvers with uncanny success. I stirred one a too-strong drink; watched him cough it back up. I loudly interrupted one’s conversation as he was trying to ask Yumiko for her phone number. I persuaded one away on an extraneous errand. I monopolized Yumiko’s time, danced with her, took shots together. I was aggressive, assertive, territorial. Yumiko was skeptical — me in my tie-dyed shirt with a frayed hole over one nipple and long hair — who was this hippie? It wouldn’t have taken much to persuade her away. Unknown to me was that Yumiko was three years out of a violent relationship with a controlling Frenchman she’d met at an airport. He, among other things, had raped his own sister when they were younger. She’d grown depressed, suicidal, swore off men for three years, and had only decided, weeks before the party, to begin meeting potential partners. She was

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