Thursday, April 29, 2010

Japanese restaurants

Today was the first day in a string of public holidays here and I spent most of it in the garden. By 5:30pm my back was dying and I realised there was absolutely nothing in the house that I could whip up for tea in a short time (we had already had pasta for lunch...) so we decided to go out for tea as a special treat for me more than anyone. I have a love-hate relationship with Japanese restaurants. I love the fact that they are usually very child-friendly, but hate the way that the majority of Japanese children behave in restaurants. I love the speed at which most food comes after it is ordered, but hate the way that you don't feel like you can sit and chat for a couple of hours over your meal. I love picture menus and plastic food outside restaurants - it makes ordering so much easier when you can't read the menus. But, the one thing I hate the most about Japanese restaurants (apart from the smoking.... I won't even start on that!) is that the majority of the smaller restaurants have a television set that they have turned on very loud and in a position where every table in the restaurant can see it. We don't watch TV very much in our house (well not while the kids are awake) and it is ALWAYS turned off at mealtimes as that is one of the few times we all sit down and actually have time to talk together as a family. For me going out for a meal is another chance to all talk together, but in Japan the loud TV turns it into a very different experience. Tonight we continued to shock the locals by firstly turning the TV down and then shocked them even further by turning it off completely..... fortunately there were no other customers in the restaurant at the time to complain. I'm sure the locals will soon see us coming and hide the remote before we arrive!
Yesterday after I wrote the blog entry about the wild boars my husband informed me that he had actually taken a photo of them with his mobile phone. So, just to prove that there were actually wild boars in the trap here is a photo!


  1. Hi there. Hope you and your lot a well - any plans for Golden Week?

    Cigarettes in NZ went up 10% in price yesterday morning! All good. Mum's hoping it will make Sarah, Nor and Dad stop!

    Talk to you soon.

  2. Most of the places we eat don't have a TV, but we went to a noodle place with Baachan last week with a TV and proceeded to watch them stare at it for the whole time we were there! It felt awful, I hope we never go there again!

  3. The smoking gets me too at restaurants. And the division between smoking and nonsmoking is often a teeny tiny plastic divider. I once went to an Italian restaurant. The divider was about a 5cm plastic thin divider (didn't even cover our heads). They sat us on the nonsmoking side and then someone sat next to us with the thin short divider up and continued to puff away for the entire meal. He had about 5 cigarrettes, when we got home we all smelled of strong smoke! Now I won't let them sit us even remotely near the smoking section.

    Most places we eat don't have TV's, but now that you mentioned it, I'll keep my eye out. Good on you to turn it down or turn it off. And ha ha ha, I wonder too if they'll hide the remote next time. ; )