Well, after being up for twenty-four hours straight, traveling halfway across the world, suffering two sleepless nights and two early wake-ups, and experiencing the most splendiferous sugar-high, I came crashing down last night halfway between the Pierre Herme pistachio macaroni and the Margherita pizza.
But I get ahead of myself.
I’m not much of a drinker, preferring to focus on the food, but I did have a couple of glasses of wine with dinner at Le Bourguignon followed by a couple of drinks at Star Bar the night before last. The result? Lots of tossing and turning and a seven a.m. wake-up. I had a hell of a blog update to work on and so, rather than hit Tsukiji for breakfast, I uploaded photos and had breakfast in my hotel room:
I had so much to cover from Day #2 that I didn’t have time to upload my blog that morning. We had to be in Daikanyama for our 10:00 a.m. head spa appointment. Yes, you heard correctly. Akemi booked us a head spa appointment, assuring me I’d love it and that she was sure they got plenty of male gaijin customers. So, we hopped on the metro (I can’t believe I took all those cabs the first couple of times I came to Tokyo) and headed west of the city.
Akemi turned out to be right. While I’m not exactly sure they get a lot of gaijin male customers, the head masseuse (masseur for Akemi) at ZACC Copain (ZACC copain(ザック コパン) 美容室ZACCの代官山店) provided exceptional service. And a damn fine head massage. Akemi and I were in separate rooms and only later was I informed that spa etiquette requires the customer to relax and sleep through the session – instead of yammering away like she could hear me doing. I would later come to regret my missed opportunity at sleep but, at the time, I enjoyed a great hour chatting with my masseuse, Ikegami Yuka who spoke fluent English after spending a year and a half in what (Carl hates it when) some refer to it as “the O.C.”. Anyway, she was wonderful company – and incredibly strong. I had to request a lighter touch on massage as I come from a line of notoriously weak-skullled men.
Following the massage, we enjoyed some tea while one of the salon’s top stylists touched up Akemi’s hair, then headed off to explore the Daikanyama neighborhood. It’s a really quaint little area, obviously popular with the young people – and their dogs! For lunch, we ended up hitting some place called Aloha Table where we
enjoyed ate some Hawaiian(?)-themed dishes: a hamburg on rice with sauce for Akemi (she took two bites and left the rest) and the crispy fried chicken for me in habanero spice.
We checked out an enormous bookstore, then headed back to Ginza where Akemi could shop while I finished updating my blog.
Later that afternoon, we met up for a stroll through the Mitsukoshi department store basement/food section where I made a mental note to pick up and sample about two dozen food items before my departure. My buddy Ivon will be pleased to hear that the white strawberries are apparently in season!
From there, it was off to Omotesando for some more walking around . It was at this point that I began to (as your hardcore gym rats like Carl like to say) “feel the burn”. I got a pistachio macaron from Pierre Herme, figuring that would give me the energy to get through the rest of the night but, surprisingly, even that exquisite little treat wasn’t enough to stop my downward descent.
We ended up meeting our friend Keiko at an Italian restaurant called Napule. I was ready for bed before our menus had even hit the table. Still, I persevered. After all, food WAS involved. We ordered two pizzas and two pastas.
At this point, I was ready for bed. My fellow diners kept noting my increasingly narrowed eyes. I was ready for bed. Unfortunately, it took them about an hour to serve us our pasta from the time when we ordered them. And, when they arrived, they weren’t even very good. I’m betting people don’t go to Napule for the pasta. After the pastas arrived – and after Akemi and Keiko had enjoyed their coffees – we headed back the hotel.
Finally, back at the hotel, I turned in for the night. At a little after 9:30 p.m. But not before having a quick snack –
Well, I’m feeling much better following ten hours of sleep. And, with this blog entry behind me, I’m now getting ready to meet my friend, Moro-san, for a play-it-by-ear lunch, perhaps a return visit to the Salon du Chocolat on its final day, maybe a trip to the Kiddyland toy store in Omotesando, a little Akihabara, and then we cap things off with sushi dinner at Harutaka. Will have the full report for you in the morning!