Saturday, December 19, 2009

Konnichiwa!

Question: Is the title politically incorrect? Answer: Perhaps. While I do hope for more responses to my last post, I decided to reward you sweet readers with a photo-filled entry nonetheless! Enjoy.

So we started the drive to San Francisco around noon. The drive to the city was pretty smooth, but once we arrived... Well, let's just say that after a couple of wrong turns we finally found Japantown around one fifteen in the afternoon. Guess what? Even on a Wednesday, there was absolutely no parking. NONE. So we drove around for forty-five minutes before giving up and going to the hotel. We secured the very last parking space in their teensy tiny garage. Luckily, we were able to check in early and we were golden!

We reserved two rooms at the Hotel Tomo in Japantown. It's a Best Western but it's been recently remodeled to employ some hallmarks of Japanese pop culture - like anime art, which lends a lot of visual appeal to the otherwise sleek lines of the hotel. Affordable and stylish? Count us in!

Here is the lobby - decorated for the holiday season!
The ceiling was super cute.
Anna, Ethan and Chris posing for their Christmas card on this blue blob we found in the lobby.
So we rode up to the sixth floor, where we would be staying. We found this mural on the wall of the boys' room. We don't know what it means, really.
The rooms each had a balcony.
With a fun view: right into Japantown!
The view up the street.
After we settled in, we are EXCITED! Let the photoshoot begin.
The only vaguely attractive photo taken of E and me on this trip. :PModels. Obviously.
Chris and Anna: the couple that isn't.
Chris and Ethan: the couple that is.
I look weird. BUT, I included this because Ethan is looking at me so sweetly!
Chris in the kimono-shaped bathrobe provided by the hotel. Okay, the political incorrectness of this post is overwhelming me right now. Sorry guys.
Don't they look absolutely adorable? Afterward, I looked at the photo and asked "Ethan, why the heck is my pink umbrella in the shot?" and he replied "Sorry, I thought it would be cute." Okay, E!
Another abstract mural. This one was in the girls' room. Please observe my messy bed.

We left the room and went out exploring Japantown for a couple of hours before we came back to get spruced up for dinner. I was actually super excited to get my hands on some Japanese food. Do you remember my first time trying non-sushi Japanese? Haven't I come a long way? So, we made dinner reservations at Osaka. Ethan called it in and put it under the name "The Fantastic Four." Seriously. The lady taking the reservation was pleased.

The gyoza came out piping hot. So. Good.
If this shot of the miso soup doesn't give you a miso soup craving, I'm betting you don't like miso soup. This is miso soup at it's best.
My DELICIOUS bento box dinner: salad with miso dressing, vegetables with miso sauce, shrimp and vegetable tempura (zucchini is my favorite), some pickled something or others, and teriyaki chicken.
We shared some avocado, cucumber and prawn sushi.
This, my friends, is tempura green tea ice cream: the ice cream is enclosed by slices of pound cake. The ball is dipped in tempura batter and flash fried. And then enjoyed by four curious kids.

As much as I'd like to tell you we had a rip-roaring crazy night after dinner... We didn't. We went back to the hotel and watched some shows on the internet. Ethan passed out for about an hour and then dismissed himself to go to his room for bed. I started snoozing and when I woke up Chris was leaving to go to bed as well. I thought the night had come to an end. AU CONTRAIRE. Anna and I girl-talked it up for a couple of hours, discussing life in the dark before falling asleep.

Fast forward eight hours. Anna and I are up and ready waiting for the boys. We reunite and lug our stuff to the car and go out exploring again.

We wanted to do crepes for breakfast before we left the city. Unfortunately, our venue of choice did not open until 11:00. I KNOW. So, we sat and waited.
Some of us more patiently than others.
My crepe: bananas, whipped cream, chocolate sauce, and vanilla gelato. Why is that so wrong? Ethan actually asked me to crop his hands out of this photo, lest anyone think he actually devoured this behemoth snack. For breakfast... No really, why is that so wrong? :P
And then, we checked out. We we, clearly, so sad to leave.

So then we made the drive home. It was so nice to spend time with friends - and to just get away for a day or two. Overall, we all had an awesome time together!

2 comments:

Justice Pirate said...

that girl room is beautiful!! I love the mural! I love love miso soup!! ahhh I want sushi and miso soup now. Thanks a lot ;)

Anna said...

wow this sounds like such a fun trip! i love all the murals and paintings in the rooms..oh and that crepe yum! xox