Saturday, October 30, 2010

Pillow Talk. And Chicken.

We had a cloudy Saturday today. Got flu shots for the boys (sorry--no pics. Left the data card in the computer. Again).

Afterwards, we walked downtown to look for some real pillows. As in, big, fluffy American pillows. Not small, flat, wimpy pillows that make your arm fall asleep. After two months, we have decided there are some things we just can't go native on. So, after flu shots, we walked down to Daimaru department store. They had lots of pillows, engineered with small round particles that were made out of kevlar. Or maybe gold nuggets. The cost--about $200 per pillow. I am NOT kidding. I only wish I had taken a picture of the price tag.

We left. And I found lovely, fluffy, happy, American pillows at the Laura Ashley store for only 3000 yen. We will pick up the second one on Wednesday. Darrin and I will have to share the one they had in stock today. Laura Ashley--who knew?

So then we walked back up Karasuma and picked this place for dinner. It's a typical yakitori place--all chicken, all the time. Most of it grilled on sticks. The kitchen:

We ordered a bunch of yakitori. (chicken and vegetables grilled on skewers). We also ordered some nabe--a kind of communal soup pot with chicken that you cook at the table. Here's what it looked like on the poster. It's a very cozy autumn meal.
I talked for a while with the waiter about how much nabe we should order.
He said, the standard order (1380 yen) is for 2 people. I'm not sure that's enough for 5 people.

I say, well, with all the yakitori we ordered, I think that one order is enough.

He says, Well, how about you order one order of nabe, and then if you can eat two orders, let me know and we'll give you more.

I say, that sounds great.

At least, that's how I thought the conversation went.

As it turns out, here's what really happened:

He said the standard order (1380 yen) is for 2 people. I'm not sure you're going to need any nabe, with all the yakitori you ordered.

And I say, well, with all the yakitori we ordered, I think that one order is enough.

He says, Well, how about you don't order any nabe, and if you think you can eat more food after all that yakitori you pigs ordered, let me know.

I say, that sounds great.

This more accurate translation became apparent after we had, indeed, finished our yakitori. We were feeling rather full, and were sort of wondering if we needed any more food, and maybe we hadn't needed to order the nabe after all. That's when the waiter brought the boys a free bowl of ice cream, and the waiter and the cook came out of the kitchen and were standing around waiting for us to pay them.

I ask you: would this EVER happen in the USA, portion king of the world?

Anyway, here are some of the yummy foods we enjoyed. Small grilled eggs. Quail, I think.

Mushrooms and onions:

Cheese balls. Another translation problem. These are not cheese balls. These are chicken meat balls covered BY cheese. But, they were still good.

Chicken meatballs, and a piece of chicken heart off to the right there:

Here's Alek eating some regular yakitori (Right hand, leg meat. Left hand, breast meat).

Flied Potato. A classic.

While we were waiting for the food, the boys practiced their hiragana skills. Alek's hand says, "Alek loves Mommy."

Hugo drew this guy:

True to form, Hugo cleared quite a few skewers...

All and all, another fun-filled food adventure for the gang!

1 comment:

  1. Sounds to me like your Japanese is getting pretty good! Even with the mis-communication, it's really impressive. How about other members of the adventure squad?

    Your recent blogs are making me hungry.

    It's great that your blog output stays high, interesting, and really fun.

    It's been a while since I made a comment.
    sumimasenga! But I've been reading them
    and as far as I know I'm up to date.

    Just keep 'em coming!

    Happy Halloween everbody!