The restaurant is closed on Thursdays so we had it all o ourselves. And even though I'd spent a lot of time there, I'd never been in the kitchen!
We had free reign and michael made himself right at home, playing with cash register and teaching Ruji some magic tricks. I helped a little while Mitsumi made a huge meal: Brazilian pizza from Ruji's friends restaurant, sushi, soba, and tons of spare ribs in a yummy marinade! We were stuffed.
One thing Michael finds different, interesting and most enjoyable is that Japanese meals usually do not center around a big main course. There are typically LOTS of things to eat, lots of little plates and dishes. Also, they may serve raw veggies or a salad or sweets that we think of as a dessert, with breakfast.
At dinner, both of Mitsumi's daughters, Mika and Yuka, joined us. They were young girls, maybe 6 and 8 when I lived here. They are young women now! They joined David and I for dinner 4 years ago and did again this time. I am honored that they would take the time to see me again! They are both so sweet and funny!
After dinner, even though we were dead tired, we. Went to a huge mall to get in some shopping. Ruji and Michael wen to a huge arcade while mitsumi and I shopped. Then the boys hit the guitar store where michael picked out several guitar picks. We got back to Setsuko's house around 11 where we dropped into our futons and fell asleep immediately! (Until 5 am at least!)
This is michael blogging now so hopefully it will be better.
I woke up to my mom yelling,"MICHAEL GET UP ITS SO LATE OMG," (and of course it was 8:30 in the morning) "We are going to walk the kids to school. I took a shower in record time for me and we went to Mai's school and we went and looked around the very interesting school. We noticed we were attracting a constantly growing crowd of little Japanese kids. We were almost leaving when a little kid came up to me with a pen and paper and said,"sign please!" In a short time there were something around 35 kids surrounding me and my mom going "SIGN PLEASE!" This was a very interesting experience and when it was over I said why doesn't this happen to me in America? Oh well.
Later we were picked up at 11 by Sachiko and her husband. First we visited Iga Ueno Castle. That was very cool. We went to lunch at a very small restaurant with only two tables. I ordered soba that came with a delicious rice bowl but it had seaweed on top and if your in my family you know how much I hate seaweed. Later we went to a float museum where I was the guinea pig to the parents. They dressed me up like a ninja.
This was a different experience. We visited the ninja house which was the highlight of my day. Lets just say it was so awesome that I have decided to pursue the occupation of a ninja. We then drove to both locations of Hirata juku, where Ashley rejoiced with many of her friends and her old boss, Hirata. We had a great dinner at Setsuko's house and after I played for an extensive time with Akemi's three daughters. I've never got a better work out in my life. I was sweating and ready for bed after.