Archive for May 27th, 2010

Slurping

Today I experienced something that still has me a little stunned.  After returning from the Sony Building, Nick, Radin and I went to eat and a vending machine restaurant.  This was my first time eating there during a heavy traffic time.  Normally I am there late in the evening when many of the Japanese locals are not.  While sitting there enjoying my meal of pork and rice I was startled by the sounds around me.  As I looked up I noticed that I was surrounded my natives, slurping away at their Ramen.  There we were sitting quietly eating our meals, and ten or so Japanese businessmen were slurping down their food noisily.  I then remembered that while eating Ramen it is not seen as being rude, but rather as a compliment to the chef.  I am still confused by this Japanese custom of eating, but alas, I myself am not Japanese.  I was taught  my whole life to eat a certain way and I am not sure I will ever really be comfortable any other way.

Sony Tower

Today was our first day outside the regular study abroad schedule.  Most of the other students are on their way back to Detroit as I am typing this.  Nick, Radin and I made our way to Sony Tower in Ginza.  This building is packed with the latest and greatest products Sony has to offer.  I am surprised that it was not on our study abroad itinerary.  Upon reaching the building, I knew it would be a truly Japanese experience.  The technology showed off is years ahead of what the United States has to offer.  The raw technology behind everything was astonishing.  Cameras, cellphones and televisions surrounded us.  The best part about this was the fact that it is all hands on.  Most everything there could be handled and tested.  Radin had a blast testing out the best Sony cameras and lenses.  It was bizarre being allowed to handle cameras and camcorders that cost more than our entire trip to Japan.  The Japanese are extremely trusting of the customer and tourists just visiting.  Sadly, like few other attractions in Japan, no photos were allowed inside.

Smaller Portions in Japan

The food here is insane!  We have nearly been here two weeks and I am just now taking into consideration all that I have eaten.  I remember the first few days stuffing my face with several helpings of food.  The smaller portions were very noticeable at first, but after being here a while, they have become less and less of an issue.  I just finished a meal that completely filled me up.  After eating and looking back at I have eaten I was surprised.  This meal would have never satisfied me before.  I am not sure if it is the fact that I am trying to save money, or my body really is adjusting to the smaller meal sizes.  I barely finished a meal that I would have considered an appetizer back home.  The squid, tuna and eel may not look like much, but I can’t imagine eating more than given to me on this very small plate.