Daniel in Japaniel

Just Melt

with 2 comments

It’s hard not to brag when it comes to Tokyo, the “wet dream of Americans”, as “What White People Like” describe it as.

Suffice it to say, I am relieved to relax in the hands of my friends and get paraded around the sites as a visitor, not obscurely guessing at what may be fun.

Truly I have gotten the royal treatment in this taste of Tokyo. A friend of mine, Momo-chan, that I met over the W&M CCC program this past summer, has been kind enough to host me at his house. Sitting on the roof top terrace of a 28 story building, this family has a terrific view of Tokyo University and the surrounding city skyline. His father, a Japanese George Clooney in terms of looks, runs every day (training for a marathon) in the odd hours not lecturing at Todai or practicing at the Maternity Ward of the same hospital; while his mother, an anesthesiologist, works on her upcoming Herbology book and practices plastic surgery in her family business clinic.

I was just treated to a dinner of Shabu Shabu (the sound effect of stirring). Shabu Shabu is a crock-pot family meal invented during the Meiji Period, as Japanese chefs reconciled the influx of livestock into their cooking. Pretty much, plate after plate of rare pork and beef are brought to the table as they are flash boiled in salt or soy-milk broth and dipped in a daikon radish or ground goma (sesame) base and enjoyed over rice, as you enjoy glass after glass of Asahi beer or Whiskey-sours.

Before that though, my friends Yuki and Marie (below), have been linked in arms with me as they’ve taken me through Ginza (Tokyo’s 5th avenue), Shibuya (the grundgy Tokyo, described as Bucha-Bucha the sound of chaos in Japanese), Shinjuku (Central Park feel), Harajuku (T’s Soho), Reppongi (T’s Greenich Village) and Asakusa (T’s Kyoto) in all less than two days.

Truly time is hyper-realized in Tokyo. Compared to the 5 AM- 12 AM days of Kyoto, Tokyo seems like 1 minute a day, yet somehow my waist size doubles with each second.

Meanwhile, this “taste” has only excited me for the more time to come in this city as December falls upon Japan, and the year of the OX materializes.

There is of course plenty more to be done. So far, as I said, I have been pointed in the right direction. Starting tomorrow however, with the return of Julian from Thailand, we shall really see if I have the feet to manage.

So far I have been averaging 8 hours of walking in Tokyo, but as Thanksgiving in Tokyo, a day of day care, and some modern art museum hopping approach, I think time on my feet will outlast any sleep I ever hope to have.

Tokyo will exhaust me for the rest of my life.


Written by Daniel

November 24, 2008 at 1:30 pm

Posted in shopping, wandering

2 Responses

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  1. How did you come across that OX? Were you looking for it or did you just notice it? Perhaps you have OX on the brain with the new year coming up. I know I do since it will be the second coming of the zodiac in my lifetime (excepting the year I was born).

    I’m glad you have time to post while you’re in Tokyo. Please keep it up.

    I got promoted at Schlafly. I am charged with spearheading the “new tour program” and I got a raise. Most of all, I dropped my third job. Hooray! and Kristin says Hi.



    November 25, 2008 at 1:38 am

  2. i haven’t been looking for the ox, he just appeared!
    it sounds like it is going to be the year of the ox for you stewart! that is great you got a raise, and let go of the irritating job. not to mention, you are helping my japanese (though you may not know it) now when i talk about you, i can say you have 二つアルバイト versus 三つ isn’t that a relief?

    hello kristin!


    November 25, 2008 at 1:46 am

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