On the first train, i spent about two hours sitting next to an adorable Japanese business man, who struck up a conversation about a half hour into the ride. He was very nice! and spoke primarily in decent but halting English, while I spoke primarily in terrible but enthusiastic Japanese.
salaryman: "Ah, Kanazawa! What was your...impression...of Osaka?"
Me: "Daisuki! It was...dammit i always forget the word for beautiful...KIRAKIRA!"
(tabs, later: you couldn't remember "KIREI DA?!" Me: STFU Osaka was totally sparkly!)
Me: Niichan wa Italy no tabibito, soshite atashi wa Nihon ni...Okaasan to Tousan wa...dokidoki?
salaryman: Ah! Yes, parents are worried!
me: Hai, hai! Okaasan wa...come on, uh...happy janai.
I got across that we were in Kanazawa for a concert, although he didn't seem to know w-inds., and also that I was a teacher from Pennsylvania. I also asked, in completely competent japanese i want to point out, if that was the ocean outside the window and said that it was so blue! In return, I learned that the ocean is too rough to swim in because of the wind there, that his sister went to the University of Pennsylvania to be a sociology major, and also that he used to be a sports reporter and covered Matsui when he was in high school playing for his home prefecture.
he reported that Matsui was "very modest, very smart! He was....diligent!" God bless Japan.
ETA: and Hal, i thought of you! He told me that he played baseball in high school, so i asked his position! and he was first base and third in the batting order! and because I now actually know something about baseball, I said, "ah, sugoi! Clean-up batter! ano...girigiri..." and he seemed pleased by that. ^^VV