Tokyo Topics

In this post Helmut and I take a Tokyo tour bus, explore the psyche of the Japanese married male and end up on a mini-fishing expedition..

Dear readers, occasionally I am quizzed as to why I don’t post on Hewdge more consistently. Well, the answer to that question is of course: Bombay Sapphire. Yes, it’s devilishly addictive and I DO hope you are keeping yours in the freezer. Remember: that glorious nectar of the gods can NEVER be too cold!! As far as advice goes, dear readers, this must surely be the most sensible, except perhaps, the tedious admonishment to wear sunscreen. Naturally, our freezers are FULL of Bombay Sapphire or, as Helmut gaily quips when referring to the brand, we are always full of BS! 

Tokyo Tour

One of our first outings in Tokyo is a bus tour around the city, culminating in a visit to the delightful Kyu Shiba Rikyu Gardens. Our loquacious tour guide, Yuki, is embarrassed when her mic fails, strangely enough, just as we are passing Tokyo’s Panasonic Centre

Luckily, Yuki is a professional and has a back-up plan – an informative flip chart, with diagrams depicting modern Japanese family life. Yes, dear readers, Helmut and I learn more about Japanese society on that bus tour than all our Pokemon card-swaps and Sake binges put together!

Japanese Family Life:

According to Yuki’s chart, while Japanese husbands are happy to come home for food, Japanese wives have to bear the sole responsibility for running the household and rearing the children

According to Yuki’s chart, men rarely spend time with their wives and children, and are constantly out drinking and socializing after work 

Another of Yuki’s diagrams shows women doing all the housework, while their husbands lounge lazily around the house, reading newspapers. Oh dear! Could Yuki be a teensy-weensy bit irate at the Japanese married male? 

As soon as our Cultural Awareness Bus Tour is over, we head for the nearest pubs and sushi bars to observe as many hungry, drinking, dallying, and domesticity-dodging husbands as we can find. Look! We spot a group already…

Interesting Japanese Dishes

An obvious food choice for the undomesticated Japanese male, is Shirako or Fish Sperm, a dish of tempting looking sacks containing seminal fluid. Helmut playfully suggests that most tourists would go “nuts” over this food…What a wag!

Shirouo no Odorigui

Shirouo no Odorigui, or ‘dancing’ ice fish, are very small transparent fish (shirouo), which are eaten alive and dance in one’s mouth before being swallowed. The dish is traditionally served with a quail egg and vinegar. First, the egg is cracked open, mixed with vinegar and then the shirouo are added to the egg/vinegar mix. The little fellows are then caught with chopsticks and brought to one’s mouth where they wriggle and squirm around, to the delight of the diner

After the meal, Helmut feels something burrowing under his dentures and nibbling away at his adhesive. Could it be the ice fish that got away? Yes! Only a rod made of a toothpick and dental floss can capture the mini-Moby in his mouth. That, and a rinse around with Bombay Sapphire Mouthwash, helps bring the fishing expedition to an end…

Banashi

Banashi is raw horsemeat, but it is Basashi Ice Cream, which boasts that same exquisite raw horsemeat flavour, that is clearly a winner in the dessert stakes. What better to follow ice fish than ice-cream!

After a mouth-watering day…

Later, we call in at a popular karaoke bar in Shibuya, where Helmut displays his unique talent for emptying a room

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