Number One Yum

“What do you mean you have never had sushi?!”

“I mean I have never had sushi. That’s what I said, idiot.”

The three of us, clad in North Face rain gear, baseball caps and backpacks looked pathetic as we bumped into the heeled, pristinely made-up Asian goddesses and pushed through the bustling crowds at the grand Shibuya Station desperately seeking any sign of an exit. Finally, we burst through to the fresh Tokyo air and were immediately bombarded by the fluorescent lights from billboards and skyscrapers and the non-stop pace of the people moving by. Scampering forward to the crazy cross-walk, we made our way to the staple, Starbucks, before our search for the perfect virgin-stealing sushi spot began.

We couldn’t help our awestruck tourist faces as we skipped like schoolgirls through the streets of Shibuya looking and pointing at the wonderful things we saw. Check out that four-story McDonald’s! Look at those sick Nike’s! Did you see that girl’s cell phone?

After over an hour of wandering, we settled on a restaurant located on a small side street. We scurried in with linked arms, eager for our sushi experience to begin. Our giggly demeanors caught the attention of the majority of the diners in the rectangular seating arrangement. Perhaps this was not as exciting for them as it was for us?

We were seated in the back corner, so as not to scare the locals, and given large glasses of tea. I sat mesmerized by the conveyer belt of goodies that continued to eject new sushi samplings right at my finger tips. I reached out and grabbed something pink over rice. Tuna? Salmon? Who knows. I doused the sushi in soy sauce before putting that neat-looking green goo all over it. Wasa- what? Wasabi, oh. I plopped the whole bite in my mouth and let my cheeks fill up chipmunk style while the flavors and textures soaked in slowly. My friends looked at me with gaping jaws to see my first reactions… Someone should have really warned me about that wasabi. I was red in the face from a mixture of hot tastes, excitement and laughter and had the most difficult time swallowing that first big bite.

The three of us spent the afternoon sampling the Japanese cuisine, coupled with plenty of soy sauce, infinite laughs and a limited amount of wasabi.

– Patty Meegan

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