Wednesday, March 22, 2006

shunbun no hi

Yesterday was a National holiday, Shunbun no hi (Vernal Equinox Day) or the First day of Spring. It was also higan, the day when people visit their family graves to pray for their ancestors and departed loved ones.

Satoshi had the day off, so we went to have breakfast at our favorite cafe. Then for the next 4 hours he was in front of the television watching the World Baseball Classic championship game between Japan & Cuba. Japan won the game 10-6, but Cuba gave it their all to keep the game close.

While Satoshi watched the game, I went to have my hair done. On a previous post I wrote about the troubles of getting my hair cut. Well, getting it colored is much easier! Mainly because all you have to say is, "same like the last time!" :) After getting it done, I went back home and the game was still in progress.

Finally, after a total of 4 hours, the game was over. Usually during the week I am cooped up at home, so I wanted to go out somewhere. We went to Takarazuka. It is about 20 minutes from our station. Our first stop was a cafe called Afternoon Tea. I had some scones with Earl Grey tea and Satoshi had a huge salad! This is one of the only places I know that you can order a entree sized salad. Near the Takarazuka station, they also have a housing park. A housing park is a park which has model homes built so that you can walk inside and choose what type of house you want/fixtures, etc. We didn't go into any of these houses (for fear of temptation of REALLY wanting to buy one), but we did ooh and aah from the outside.

After walking around a bit, we decided to have dinner at the Takarazuka Washington Hotel. I had the "Australian" beef with Kyoto veggies and tofu (soy bead curd). With the on going problem of BSE (mad cow disease), Japan is always emphasizing where their meats come from. (Although there was an incident about 2 years ago, where the Japan markets were switching labels in order to get reimbursements from the governments...sigh...) The food was really tasty and I really liked all the vegetables on top of the steak!

The weather is definitely warming up. Hopefully I'll be able to see some cherry blossoms.

Have a great week!


Rowena said...

I love the lotus root used in that dish. Not something I ever really used much, except for nishime but I saw a bag of them in the frozen section at the market today.

Speaking of beef, I hope to be able to find kobe beef somewhere here...maybe not Kauai but for sure Oahu!

K and S said...

Hi Rowena,

Try Kobe Steak House in Waikiki. They (I hope they are still in business) should have the marbled beef that you are looking for.

I really like the fried lotus root really crispy and tasty.

Take care.


Anonymous said...

That is too funny---I too went to get my hair done yesterday!! I got my usual straight perm and a long-overdue haircut. I keep forgetting to ask you where in Hawaii are you from? I've been several times to Hawaii, but we always go to Waikiki, bc DH likes "lively" places, lol.

Anonymous said...

Oops, I forgot to add that I love having scones and tea at Afternoon Tea, and that that entree-size salad is pretty good too--those are the things I always order when I go there.

K and S said...

Hi TM,

I'm from Oahu, but away from Waikiki. I try to stay FAR away from Waikiki as much as possible. ;)

I usually don't like going to "chain" (franchise) type places for tea/coffee or to eat, but I do go to Starbucks and Afternoon Tea mainly because they don't allow smoking,the food is pretty good at both places but can be a bit pricey!

Take care.


Anonymous said...

I know what you mean about trying to stay far away from Waikiki, lol, but since we are only there for a few days or week, it's convenient since we can take a taxi to most places. You are very lucky you are from Hawaii, and Oahu, because I LOVE Hawaii!! I hope to see other parts of Hawaii and Oahu someday!! :D

I know what you mean about not going to chains also, but I do like going to them occasionally just because you can depend on what you're going to get, kwim? Especially Starbucks in Japan, yumm!