Friday, November 1, 2013

My First Trip to Japan for JENESYS 2.0 Part 1.5: Food Edition!

Tabemono mo Kawaii! (Even the food is cute!)

That was my initial reaction after I got served my very first meal in Japan.

Coming to the country, I already had expectations of what I was about to see. After all, I’ve been a fan for yearrrrs. Still, I could’t help but feel really amazed whenever I see how “kawaii” for the Japanese is not just an adjective, but a way of life. It’s an industry on its own. It’s everywhere, and I meant that in the most literal sense.

Seeing food arranged in a very “kawaii” manner made me want to eat more, even if they’re vegetables. Hehe. The very reason why Japanese mamas arrange their children’s bento that way is to increase their appetite. That’s so cunning of them. Haha!

But in the end I still didn’t  touch any of the veggies during my stay. Gomen! 

I’ve been a very picky eater ever since I was a kid. It’s something I never really outgrew. I know I’ve been a bother to some people because of this, especially whenever I had to attend parties or do sleepovers. 

Part of the pre-departure procedures was to fill out a questionnaire regarding the participants’ food restrictions. We were asked if we had food allergies or if there’s any food we can’t eat for religious reasons and things like that. Because I thought it would be weird to indicate that I don’t like veggies (since it’s more of a personal preference than an actual restriction), I just said I can eat anything. And I’d lie if I say I didn’t regret that decision later on. Haha.

I only took photos of the Japanese meals, since we'd usually just have western buffet. I didn’t get to take shots of every single meal I had, so here are just a few of them:

I’d consider the very first meal to be the one served during our flight to Tokyo. Airplane meals generally have bad reputation, but JAL’s were actually nice. The chicken pasta was soooo delicious! If only the portion was bigger. lol.

This one is from the very first Japanese restaurant we visited in Tokyo. It was my first time to see an authentic traditional Japanese restaurant, and it looked just like what I usually see in dramas/movies. Haha. The place was really nice, though it was a bit hot inside. The food was okay, too. My issue was on the serving, though. I mean, why do Japanese meals have such teeny-tiny servings? Is that part of being “kawaii,” too? Haha! I know they're all for being efficient, but even with food?  No wonder the girls are slim.

We mostly had Japanese food when we transferred to Fukuoka. For 4 days, that’s all we ever ate aside from the occasional western buffet for breakfast.

Here's an okonomiyaki on its pre-mixing, pre-frying stage. I thought it was bibimbap at first. Haha!

That was my first authentic okonomiyaki. It was delicious, but I couldn’t finish one serving. It was too huge!

And this one was definitely the best meal of them all. Meat overload!

This one was in a restaurant inside Hawks Town Mall in Fukuoka. I’ve been craving for meat for days, and with this, my prayers finally got answered.

And this one, I’d have to say, was my least favorite meal. For someone who’s love for fish and vegetables is close to zero, this one was quite the torture. Luckily, I was really starving that night, so I had no problems eating the fish. I still passed on the veggies, though.
And no worries. They didn’t go to waste. I gave them to my dinner table buddies. 

Thankfully, we went to visit Akihabara that same night, and I had a taste of some street sweets. The crepe made up for the not-so-enjoyable dinner. I had the choco-banana-vanilla-something flavor – same as Hayato’s favourite. Haha!

And this was the last Japanese meal we had in Fukuoka. This was on the day we were preparing for our final presentation. Again, not a favorite. I need more meat! I like the food setting, though. 
Please excuse my tired, pale face. This was near the end of the program, and all the fatigue started showing up on my face. Couldn’t help it.

Of course, the last meal was JAL food. The first one was waaaaay better, but this wasn’t that bad either. Yup. I’m that biased with meat.

In the end, my love affair with Japanese food remains the same – there are some things I like and some things I hate. Still, if you love someone something, you have to accept everything, even those parts you don’t like, right?

What the heck am I talking about? Oh, yeah. Food. lol.

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