Two quiet “at home” days, relaxing, rewinding and helping Faye with the mammoth task of packing. Have fallen by the wayside with my step count (no long walks or climbing steps) and I am expecting a dire warning from the fitbit any day now. Also snacking habit seems to have upped its game. Had a quick trip to the local supermarket (out alone again!) and managed to buy everything we needed and get through the paying process without mishap.
Supermarket is very local, within easy walking distance, and has a fantastic selection to choose from, especially the fruit and veg section. Lots of things I don’t recognise but also lots of things I do. Everything seems to be supersized compared to at home. The apples are enormous and very sweet, easily enough for two people to share and cost about £2.25 each. With Valentine’s Day approaching absolutely everywhere in Tokyo is crammed full of potential Valentine’s Day gifts, mostly chocolate based, with two options. Honmei choco is “true feeling” chocolate and is for husbands, boyfriends and prospective boyfriends and is more expensive and usually of a higher quality than giri choco (obligation chocolate) which is for male work colleagues and other men the woman has no attachment to. Note that Valentine’s Day chocolate is only given to men from women though the women get their turn next month on March 14th which is known as White Day and men can reciprocate and buy candy and gifts for women.
Wednesday evening and we headed for Roppongi to meet up with a friend of Faye’s for dinner. I hadn’t seen HyunSook since she was in Skye last summer for Faye and Tom’s wedding so it was so lovely to see her again and catch up. Again a very typical Japanese restaurant, Jomon, and a great experience.
Once again, shoes off at the door and into the shoe cupboard and off on to the lovely floor cushions with the underfloor space for legs. HyunSook had booked the table for us so when we arrived there was a wee handwritten welcome card on the table addressed to HyunSook, which I thought was a lovely touch.
Food was great, more yakatori but with a different selection from our last time and as usual a lovely salad. We also had a hot pancake made with yamaimo (mountain yam) and bonito flakes as a starter. which I enjoyed but apparently the yamaimo can be quite “slippery” when eaten cold. I also had plum wine with soda which I loved. Delicious and very refreshing with, I suspect, quite a high alcohol content, so I was glad to have the added soda. Not many food photos this time as we were so busy catching up that we forgot.
As we were collecting our shoes ready to leave we were offered a sweetie each from a tray and heat pads to put in our pockets on the way home to keep our hands warm. As the weather had turned very cold these past few days this was very welcome and such and lovely thoughtful thing to do.
Out into the cold again (but with lovely warm hands) and off to Roppongi Hills centre with its enormous spider statue, lovely gardens (complete with heart light for Valentine’s Day), it’s beautifully lit, treelined avenues (and some very different sculptures along the way) and the night view of the Tokyo tower.
Coffee at Starbucks (everywhere else seemed to close at 9 p.m.) and more chat and then quick goodbyes all round and back on the train back to the apartment.