Monday, March 25, 2013

Raw Egg and Off Day Exploring

Monday was an off day for Brandon. No practice, no baseball, no obligations! We had decided we were going to go out and do some exploring together. I have made several trips over to the Sannomiya area but they have always been solo. Yesterday we headed out together to see what we could find.
Let me back up a quick minute. Saturday I went to the game with one of the other wives. After the game the five of us went to find a huge dollar store just a few train stops from home. Dollar stores here are amazing! We bought all kinds of kitchen gadgets for a buck. After we shopped for a bit Brandon and I decided to stay and eat. His teammate, wife, and daughter headed back early. They just didn't think their active 18 month old was going to make it through a sit down dinner.
We sat down and started looking at the menu. There was zero English. Brandon has been able to figure out what certain symbols mean and with the help of his phone he can look up some things too. He knew what he wanted and had seen it in the food showcase outside. I had no idea. I said just order me some plain noodles. We are both on our phones looking up the equivalent to plain noodles. We did, sorda, and this was my meal.
All of a sudden I am kicking myself for this bright idea to try something new.
Raw eggs? No not for me. I don't even like my eggs a tiny bit runny. Blah. Suck it up Lauren! This isn't real life. How am I going to choke down this entire bowl?  
Major mental pep talk going on inside my head. Brandon proceeds to tell me to stir it up to eat it and that I wouldn't ever know and before I knew what was going on his chopsticks had punctured the yolk and he was vigorously mixing the egg into my entire meal. Ok, I thought maybe I could just scoop the egg out and eat the noodles but that surely wasn't happening now. I had a frothy bowl of noodles and egg. I did what I promised him I would do. I tried it. I couldn't do the slippery texture and I'm not a huge fan of Udon noodles. As I felt Brandon looking at me with a smidge of disappointment, I said ooooh yummy these are so delicious and tried taking several more bites. A fair shot I would say at trying the meal. As we were walking home, he told me that he was glad I continued to try it even though I didn't like it. Luckily we had a frozen pizza snack in the freezer and I had that for dinner. Moral of the story, I don't like raw eggs. Period. The following night this was our dinner. I had to have a little taste of home and it sure hit the spot.
So back to exploring. It was chilly and windy but that wasn't stopping us.
We were in the same area to where I had been going before but we walked passed and all around what I had already discovered. There is a huge department store, Daimaru, and we checked out all nine floors. There was everything and it was all very expensive and upscale. Men's fashion here is very different than in the US. It is often hard to tell if you are in the men's or women's section they all blend together. So we just kept finding more stores and continued walking and walking. We started to get hungry so we turn around and started to walk back. Through the side streets we kept seeing lots of people and so we cut over and checked it out. Hello Chinatown, in Japan!

Lined down both sides of the street were vendors selling hot food. Here we go again with the food and it's uncertainty.


I told Brandon to try whatever he wanted. It all smelled really good but I couldn't help but wonder what it was that we were going to be trying. We got to the last vendor without any food but decided to get an order of Gyoza to hold us over until we found a place to eat. There was five in an order so we split 3/2 and I was SO bummed we didn't each get our own order. I can't wait to go back. Truthfully, can't believe I'm admitting it, we should go back and try some of the other stuff too. Of course don't tell me what it is before I eat it but maybe trying it first won't be so bad. Best gyoza ever!
At this point we were back to most of the stores I had already seen and so we found a place to eat. Obviously I am a bit skeptical about ordering food and not being exactly sure what I'm getting. I mentioned before that most restaurants have displays of their dishes outside of the restaurant. Once we picked a place, we both decided to take pictures of what we wanted and would just show our waiter or waitress. I know this seems REALLY bizarre and possibly rude but what other option did we have? When it was time to order, our waitress started to tell us to go out to the case so we could show her what we wanted. Wow that's funny we took pictures so we showed her, she took our order, and wam-bam-thank-you-ma'am our food is what we picked out. It was good too. I really needed a meal that was going to boost my confidence in the food department after the raw egg dish from two days ago.
food photos  are from the case // us with actual food
Then guess what we did? More walking and shopping. When I say shopping we barely bought anything ALL day. I grabbed a coffee so I would quit complaining about being cold and then we found another building that had floors of shops. We discovered some pretty amazing camouflage shoes yesterday and I had one extremely happy guy ready to do some buying. Except we both have big American feet and most the shoes here are too small for us. We never found a men's  shoe size over 11, maybe came across a 12. I can find some shoes but most of them are for ladies sizes 8 and below. There were some cute little artsy shops with stationary and that type of thing. There were furniture stores and housewares shops, you name it, they had it.
It was a good day. Our wallets thanked us for barely buying anything. Brandon's loot included a camouflage umbrella and a camouflage pair of socks. I picked up a pair of work out pants and a tank from the trusty Gap. We picked up milk and chocolate chips on our way home. I made another batch of cookies to send with Brandon on his long road trip and we called it a night. We got plenty of exercise, had decent food, and spent lots of quality time together. I'd say it was an off day well spent.

1 comment:

  1. Those Gyoza look like the BOMB! Glad you had a fun day exploring.