Now I see a man slung over the shoulders of two women, barely able to walk. The women are practically carrying him. And here is the winner! A young man has unzipped his pants and pulled out his penis and begins to pee right in the middle of Ginza, the district wide awake and full of bars, clubs, the late night shops and all. He is quite oblivious of the people skirting around him. No one noticing him as if it were the most natural thing to do, like a stray cow letting a long string of a stream out on a street of Bombay.

We cut through all of that and arrive at what looks like an office building. We take a smallish elevator up to the seventh floor and enter what looks like a cocktail lounge, which it is. But there is a difference. A different kind of a private club, it’s a hostess bar. The place is filled with business men, most dressed in their dark suits and ties. And there are a stable of young hostesses, who sit next to and entertain men, pouring drinks, dancing with them and converse as if the customers were their long lost friends.

The atmosphere is relaxed, even though the hostesses hop from table to table or run to the new arrivals to greet them and to bid bowing goodbyes to the ones departing. But their attention to details and to each individual is incredible. They don’t push, but make sure that everyone’s glass is full, like any attentive host would. It’s not like damen unterhaltung’s places in Germany or the rip off joints of Rush Street in Chicago. The girls are employed by the place and receive a fix monthly salary. The price of drinks include the company of the ladies on the premises.

The girls don’t try to dry hustle you or make you buy them expensive drinks. Their clients are big corporations, who maintain an account with the establishment. Every girl seems to know every customer who comes in. They refer to them as their “friends”, and it shows in their congenial hospitable behavior.

The place is called London Carrot, its ambience is definitely English, with the colors and the lighting somber and sophisticated. I am their regular friends’ guest and being bestowed extra attention. The first two hostesses that snuggle up to me on the couch, try to converse with me in less than rudimentary English, depart after a short spell, replaced by the third one, who stays with me through rest of the evening.

Nana is her name and her English is better than the others, which is not saying much, but she seems to have infinite amount of patience and the curiosity and genuine interest in what I have to say. As difficult as it must have been, she is still interested in hearing about my impressions of her country and the people. To make sure she understands what I say and that I understand what she does, she repeats every single word I say, like my five year old daughter Anjuli does at home. She is barely twenty one, a bit on the plump side with the rounded baby fat on her frame. She asks me to dance with her, and we dance a couple of slow songs while the editors gently pull at my coat sleeves.

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