Posted by: leospurr | April 18, 2009

Moving into Spring

Even the shrimp is raw...

Even the shrimp is raw...

Most of you have heard my complaint of Japanese sushi.  It’s beautifully presented, and always fresh, but dang, it sure is boring.  A friend from college was in town a few weeks ago.  This having been her first time to Japan, and also being a sushi lover, she wanted to actually eat sushi IN JAPAN.  Well, I think she realizes now that she is an American sushi lover.  We found a recommended shop near where she was staying, and after ordering WAY too much food, we made our way through the admittedly yummy tuna, but struggled with the rest.  Finally succumbing to egregiously rude behavior, I asked the waiter to take our raw shrimp to the kitchen and cook it.  It would have gone to waste had we not done so.  I did find one spot in Azabujuban that has a fusion style sushi restaurant  It was pretty good, but I’m still looking forward to sushi back in the states!

Chef David prepping the duck

Chef David prepping Easter duckie

The cherry blossoms have dropped, to be replaced by lovely spring green leaves everywhere.  The past several mornings as Chris and I make the commute to his school, we pass by several people out in front of their homes and shops sweeping up the fallen flower blossoms.  It’s been such a nice transition to the warmer weather, and it’s been nice saying, “good morning” to our neighbors whom we haven’t seen for several months.  One gentleman in particular makes a special effort to see us in the mornings.  He always greets us in the most grandfatherly sweet way.  I hope to learn his name someday before we leave.

Life has been productively busy.  I’ve been making headway on my thesis – about 1/2 done.  No more papers or presentations for awhile, so I can theoretically focus.  We’ve got a great routine with the nanny and the boys’ various schooling.  We had friends over for Easter dinner, which consisted of the only meats available at the commissary the Friday before Easter – London Broil and Duck!  It was a hit, and there were no leftovers.  We even mangaged an easter egg hunt in our tiny back yard for nine kids.  One of my favorite senseis from DLI was passing through Tokyo with his family, so some of us were able to get together for breakfast.  That same day, about 40 members from the Australian Defence College came to visit my department.  We had great discussions during a joint symposium, and then even better interational diplomacy talks over great food and A LOT of sake for dinner.  At least I’ve got folks to visit when I head to Australia in June.  

banana and strawberry sandwich - who knew?

banana and strawberry sandwich - who knew?

Per our normal routine, our weekends usually include some type of outing via train.  David is the driving force behind these outings, and per his orders, they usually include several train transfers.  If he had his way, we would spend the entire day just travelling around on the train system.  Tonight’s adventure was to the Mitsukoshi Department store near Ginza  YOWZA!!  I’m not much of a shopper, usually because the kiddos are with me, and I prefer to save my money.  But, DANG!!  I could really go crazy here – well without the kiddos in tow, and with a wealthy husband’s credit card!  Hermes, Cartier, Tiffany, Louis Vitton – all in one place!  I had forgotten how fun department stores in Asia can be.  Fully stocked grocery stores are in the basement level, another basement level includes all kind of packaged food from sweets to wine, and the rooftop has a place where the kids can run around and get inexpensive food and snacks.  In the summer, some of these rooftops even have amusement parks.

Amidst all this great culture, I’m acknowledging our eventual move back to the states.  I almost put an offer in on a house in Annandale.  It was a great deal, but after some serious thought – it was too big, on too much land, in too nice of a neighborhood.  I’m looking for something a bit more proletarian (ok, had to look that up to make sure I wasn’t mixing it up with bourgeois or bohemian)  That’s it for another couple of weeks, I’m sure.  I mentioned to a friend that I’ve grown too accustom to things Japanese already.  I’m taking things for granted, but want to keep a fresh eye, so that I don’t miss anything!

Ja mata!



  1. Wow, you’ve been busy – no wonder we never see you! I love the pic of David in the kitchen. So … is he available for hire on the nights I don’t feel like cooking? – M

  2. You got it sista! I’ll send him over whenever you’re ready. He’s got most of the prep work covered – you may actually have to do the cooking, though. He gets bored after about 20 minutes! Hope to see you guys soon! Have fun with your mom…

  3. I too love David’s chef hat as he prepares the food – too cute! There’s a new sushi place here (near the fairgrounds) definitely a maki zushi place, HUGE rolls – interesting flavors – you would like it I think… O’Sushi

  4. Oh I forgot – the strawberry & banana sandwich – I hope it’s not filled with the fave-Japanese condiment of mayo – IYA! No perhaps yummy tart-like custard? 😀

  5. I actually blogged about O!Sushi in “Light My Fire”!! I tried it out when I was there over Christmas – loved it – especially how you can get “my hashi” if you are a regular customer. Glad to hear it’s still kicking!

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