Although I am a big fan of practicing my Japanese in some real life scenarios, sometimes it’s just easier to find someone who speaks a little English to help you out. This is what happened to me on the weekend. After spending a good half hour rummaging through my Japanese-English dictionary trying to figure out how to explain what was wrong with my bicycle, I nervously headed up the road to speak to the guy at the bike shop.
Upon arrival at the bike shop I was so flustered that all I could manage to mumble was a few Japanese words for ‘grinding’, ‘broken’ and possibly ‘mother’ and the odd random ‘no’, ‘ni’, ‘wa’ and ‘ga’s’ put in to make it sound like I was at least souping up a sentence (albeit probably ultimately derogatory). To my surprise the gentleman by the counter responded to me in superb English and had the graciousness to keep a straight face at my failed attempts at Japanese.
Talking to Yuji Maeda from My Ring bike shop was a pleasure. Yuji’s modern looking shop holds a surprising 80 year history of bicycle sales and repairs in Numazu, that all began with his grandfather.
After a long career in electrical engineering, which took him all over the world, Yuji decided on a sea change and a return to his home town and a little less stress. It was in fact, Yuji’s previous career that helped him on his was to learning English. Yuji spent considerable time in the USA and Australia refining his English. He even learnt a little German from his time working in Germany.
Now with My Ring, the new evolution of this family business, Yuji is bringing quality cycling products and services to Numazu Hon-Cho area. The My Ring range stretches from starter adult and children’s bicycles (around 24,000yen for an adult Japanese standard ‘granny’ bike) to top range European mountain bike and racer brands. My Ring also offers affordable repairs service.
One of the extra services that came in handy for me when my family came from Australia to visit was My Ring’s small fleet of standard rental bikes. As of this date, bikes can be rented at 300yen per hour of 1,500 for the whole day. Very reasonable.
The quality of care and friendly English speaking service that Yujis’ My Ring offers will keep me a loyal customer during my time here in Numazu.