Try in Japan

My Grandson’s First Visit to Japan!

At the farm: Try, Yukie and Junzo

At the farm: Try, Yukie and Junzo

Being a grandmother, I have a right to brag so I just wanted to share with you my grandson’s first visit to Japan. His name is Try (in Japanese, Torai). He is just two years old but he looks more mature. When he arrived, he was only speaking words, but after 3 weeks, he was managing whole sentences! I can’t explain that unless it’s because of all the attention he got from Grandma and Grandpa.

Try (2 years-old)

Try (2 years-old)

Papa caught some fish!

Papa caught some fish!

We spent the first three days at the farm and Junzo went fishing with HIroo. At night, we grilled the fish and had a barbecue outdoors. It was lots of fun! Try was most absorbed in catching the little crabs that live in the rain gutter behind the house! After awhile, he’d let them go,only to catch some other little guys.Unfortunately Papa had to leave after only a few days to get back to LA where he runs a popular sushi restaurant, Honda Restaurant in Torrance!

At Yasuura Farm

At Yasuura Farm

Try got to go out on a boat ride, too! The weather was lovely. The next day we visited the old town of Takehara, famous for its sake breweries, especially Taketsuru which was established 380 years ago and is a designated national treasure. On the way home we stopped at the home of the Kido family for coffee and Kanae’s famous chiffon cake.

Freshly-ground coffee!

Freshly-ground coffee!

Cake and coffee at the Kido farm, Akitsu

Cake and coffee at the Kido farm, Akitsu

Here we are around the table. We enjoyed visiting their 100 some odd year-old farm. I heard that Kido Papa was in charge of selling cotton candy at the next day’s festival, using this antique robot cotton candy machine! He keeps it in good running order and takes it to the festival every year. This year, junior high students will be in charge of the concession and he will be showing them how to operate this robot!!

Yukie'svisit 168

Hiroshima Specialty: Okonomiyaki at Horikawa in Takehara town

Hiroshima Specialty: Okonomiyaki at Horikawa in Takehara town

Yukie and Try with Shima-chan!

Yukie and Try with Shima-chan!

We took Try to visit Shima-chan and had fun talking with her and her husband!

The next day, we went to the Sagotani Dairy where there is a wide field to run and play in. He loved petting the little rabbits. We ate our lunch of rice balls on the grass. Try had played hard so he had quite an appetite! It was such a beautiful day.

"Takai! Takai!" at Sagotani Dairy

“Takai! Takai!” at Sagotani Dairy

A Big Appetite!

A Big Appetite!

Try loves to play with cars and he loves sliding boards! He bonded with Grandpa and they enjoyed picking cherry tomatoes in the yard, reading storybooks and playing together!

Reading a story

Reading a story

We went shopping at the mall and had lunch at Suishin. He had his first “okosama-lunch”, a cute, child’s plate that comes with your choice of a small toy!

Okosama Lunch

Okosama Lunch

The time went by too fast and we had to say goodbye. It is sad to think that the next time wesee him, he may be all  grown up!

Last of all, I have to tell you about the “foot bath” at Yu-no-Yama hot springs in Yuki-cho. The water is cold because there are live fish in it which eat the dead skin off your feet! It’s free. It really tickles as you can surmise from Yukie’s expression! You definitely should try this when you visit Japan!

TRy2 089

TRy2 091

This is a shot of the original Horikawa okonomiyaki shop in Takehara, at the time it was called Hoboro! Natchan told me that in Hiroshima dialect this word means when a daughter-in-law runs away back to her parents’ home, whether permanently or for a brief respite, I do not know! Hoboro is a basket that holds vegetables so when we say the daughter has “hoboro o uru” , selling vegetables, it indicates she no longer is doing housework but “gone out to sell vegetables” and returned to her parents.

Okonomiyaki shop in old Takehara

Okonomiyaki shop in old Takehara

By the way, this shop was excellent. The  noodles in the okonomiyaki were very thin and delicate. We ordered the house special that contains sake kasu ( pulp left after fermented rice is squeezed in the sake making process. It gave the dish a mild and wonderful flavor!!

We miss Try already! Have to start saving up for the next trip! Maybe they will come next year for the annual sake festival in October!!

TRy2 009

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