Actually, there was one glitch. I saw them walking by and waved, but they were not looking my way and went past, so I concluded that it was not them.
When I was just beginning to think that they had not come on the flight, Machiko came up behind me.
I took them by taxi to my house. They both went to sleep in the cab. I paid $30 for the taxi.
On the way to the subway station here in Brooklyn, they were absolutely shaking with fright. They kept asking me why there were only black people on the street and no Whites at all (except for me).
I told them that it is a safe neighborhood (which it is) and not to worry because these black people are from Haiti, Jamaica and Trinidad and such people are not dangerous. It is the American black people who are dangerous!
They were very excited and thrilled to be in Times Square, which was jam-packed with people on a Saturday night. They spent about $200 buying tourist items. Machiko bought a baby size baseball bat for her four-year-old son.
Finally, they wanted to eat, so I took them to a street known as "Restaurant Row" which is 46th Street between 8th and 9th Avenues. Coincidentally, the Manhattan Chess Club is also located in that block.
They found a restaurant where they were allowed to smoke. This was of vital importance to them, because they are both chain smokers.
In the restaurant, the conversation seemed to get interesting. Machiko wanted to know how many children I have. I told her the truth (7). They seemed to think this was great. "Every man in Japan will envy you," Monoko said.
The conversation even turned a bit ribald. They asked me if I wanted more children. I said "Okay". Machiko said (pointing), "You can have a child with Monoko."
Monoko said, "I am too old. You can have a child with Machiko."
Machiko said, "I already have two sons. You can have a child with Monoko."
They went back and forth on this for a while. When the restaurant bill came, they apparently expected me to pay it, even though I had not ordered anything and it had been their idea to go to a restaurant.
I had to tell them that I was out of money. (I had already spend about $100 on them, including buying bedding and even ashtrays for them, plus a taxi to and from the airport.)
They paid the bill, which was only $31.
They said that they wanted to go to a Broadway musical. We were just one block from the most famous Broadway theaters. I told them that it would be expensive (I wonder they were expecting me to pay for this. I have never been to one, but my impression is that the tickets run to about $75 each.)
We went home. We did not arrive home until at about 1:00 A.M.
It was then that Monoko revealed to me that she is a lesbian. (At least that is how I interpret her remarks). We had the following dialogue:
Sam (commenting on the New York sweatshirt she was wearing, which she had just purchased on Times Square): You look cute in that (which she did).
Monoko: In Japan, no man would say that. No man would want an old woman like me. (She is 41).
Sam: You mean to say that you can't get a man in Japan.
Monoko: I don't like man. Machiko likes man. I like woman.
Sam: Are you joking?
Monoko: No. I am serious.
I feel confident that she was telling me that she is a lesbian. Earlier, at the restaurant, she had said that she had never been married. She had said that, 16 years ago, she had wanted to marry, but her parents had refused.
After Monoko made the statement indicating that she is a lesbian, I went to sleep. I was very tired and it was already 2:30 AM. I made no effort to try to sleep with Machiko, figuring that they were scheduled to spend six nights at my house anyway.
The next morning, I saw that they had slept together. They had only used the new blanket and mattress padding which I had just purchased, which was still in its original containers. They had not used any of the other blankets. Therefore, they must have been cold at night.
I apologized. Monoko said that it was okay, but then she started calling hotels asking for a room.
Two Japanese girls they had met on the subway on the way home the previous night had suggested the New York Pennsylvania Hotel. I told them that I had never heard of it. Monoko asked me to find the number. It turned out to be the new name for the old Waldorf Astoria Hotel. The Waldorf Astoria changed its name around 15 years ago to the New York Penta Hotel and had, I believe, several other name changes until it arrived at its present name of the Pennsylvania Hotel.
Monoko called and found out that it costs $150 per night to stay there. They then told me that they do not have money and asked me to loan them $300 (three hundred dollars) so they could stay there for two nights.
As I am sure you can imagine, I was all to happy to loan $300 to two ladies so that they could sleep at the Waldorf instead of at my house!
When I said no, they asked, in that case, how much could I loan them. I never answered that question.
They also called other hotels, but they were all sold out (as New York City hotels normally are.)
They asked me if I knew a cheaper hotel. I told them the truth, which is that I was surprised that the Waldorf only costs $150 per night (for two) and that anything cheaper than that would be a homeless shelter, which it would be.
I am not up to date on the latest figures, but I know that the City of New York rents hotel rooms to house homeless people. These so-called welfare hotels charge $70 or $80 per night and are always full, as there is always more demand for these rooms than there are rooms available.
Machiko asked me to return all the pictures of herself she had mailed me, plus even the picture of her two sons which you had mailed me. I did so, except that I secretly kept back one photo of her.
At their request, I took them by subway to the Waldorf. It is really run down, compared to what it used to be. The carpet is dirty and shabby and appeared to be at least ten years old.
They again asked me to loan them money so that they could stay there. When I said that I could not, they started making phone calls to Japan asking for a loan.
Monoko ordered a beer in the bar at the Waldorf (they drink too) and then asked me to leave because they wanted to go sightseeing by themselves.
I gave them a key to the house (which I had just made for them) and came home. I left them at the hotel at 3:00 PM.
At 7:00 PM, they arrived here with a car service waiting down the block so that I could not see it, took their suitcases and left.
But little do they realize that I talk Jap. In addition, I have this photogenic memory for telephone numbers. Monoko called someone and gave in Japanese the telephone number of the hotel where they were going. I memorized the number and called it after they left. It was (212) 268-2900.
I found out that they went to the Walcott Hotel at 4 West 35th Street. When I called, an Indian man answered. He said that the cheapest room they have is $125 per night.
The Walcott Hotel is not listed in the telephone book.
I hope they don't mind creepy, crawly things coming into their bed while they are sleeping at night, because any hotel in New York City, especially in Midtown Manhattan, that only charges $125 per night is a real flea bag.
I am not mad about this. The entire episode cost me a bit over $100, not counting all the telephone calls I made to Japland.
Indeed, if you know any more Japbroads like that, please send them my way. Perhaps I will eventually get lucky and one of them will give it up.
PS My house still smells smoky from all the smoking they did while they were here. I hope the building maintenance man does not notice. Of course, they asked me if they could smoke and I readily agreed, in the hope of some reciprocity, of course.
PPS Besides which, now I have one photograph left, so I can post Machiko's picture on the World Wide Web!