It was a rainy Monday here in Tokyo, but I still did a little shopping before our workout. I went to Shinjuku. It was kind of similar to Ginza, where I went shopping yesterday.
To tell you the truth, a lot of the shopping around here looks the same to me. It seems like they have a lot of the same stores around the city. There’s a lot of American stores. There’s a lot of American stuff around here. But it was cool to walk around and see more stuff. There was a Ralph Lauren, and everything like that.
I did buy some Japanese souvenirs as gifts for people back home. I only bought Japanese stuff that you can’t buy back in the States. I got stuff for my family members.
Tonight, we’ll go out and eat some sushi and just check out some more sights with some of the guys. It’s our last night of eating dinner here and just being able to hang out.
We’ll just get ready for the game tomorrow. We’ll go to sleep, probably around midnight and get ready to do the daily grind of the 2008 season -? same routine.
I’m looking forward to the sushi. It’s very good here, it’s very fresh and really good. It comes right off the docks here. It’s great sushi. You’ve got to get as much as you can because you can’t find this kind of sushi in the States.
Just watching the Japanese people interact, they are very respectful when they speak to each other. When they speak to their elders, they bow a lot to them. That’s something that is sometimes lost in America but is a ritual here.
I also learned from Jeff Yamaguchi -? Oki’s translator -? about the 45-degree bow. That’s the most respect. I’ve gotten a lot of those. It seems like you get them all the time here. Jeff is older than me, so he says, “Give me the 45.” I don’t understand it all, but that’s what he said. The lower the bow, the more the respect.
We get back into game mode on Tuesday. I treat every game with a similar mindset. We’ll go out there knowing it’s a regular-season game and we have to win and it counts on our record. We have to come out, be focused, not worry and just play our game. If we play our game fundamentally sound, we’ll give ourselves the best chance to win every day. That’s all we’ve got to do. Play the way we usually do.
The exhibition games were good here because it got us used to the time change and got us acclimated. We’re used to having a crazy schedule. We get in late a lot of the time and it’s rough during the regular season. We’re very good at overcoming all obstacles. This is a little bit of an obstacle, but we’ll go out and play hard and not worry about the obstacles. We’ll worry about just playing a ballgame out of the 162.
OF course, the big story out here is going to be Dice-K pitching the opener in front of the Japanese fans. That will be wild and exciting. The fans here in Tokyo will be really excited to see him pitch and hopefully he can control his emotions. He’ll probably have his adrenaline going. If he can do that, he’ll be fine I think.
As far as the time change, I feel like I’m on Tokyo time right now. It’s kind of tough when you play in the Dome though because the sun doesn’t come in. It gets you a little off. But I think I’m acclimated. It’s getting back that they said is tough, but hopefully I’ll be able to get back in the swing soon after we get to Los Angeles. But I feel good now.