O-cha, kudasai?

October 8 2003

Lunch in Gotunda.... a little strange.
The lunch spot we were in reminded me of the Billy Goat Tavern in Chicago.  "No Pepsi, Coke"  In this case, despite the presence of menus, only two things were on lunch offer -- one kind of donburi and one kind of soba.  We're still not sure what exactly was in with the soba, it looked like it was just tofu to me.  The limited menu continued -- my colleague Brendan Crotty asked for a Coke -- not available, either.
But the icing on the cake was when I wanted some green tea at the completion of the meal.  "O-cha, kudasai" I asked, using one of the small handful of Japanese phrases in my repertoire.  This sent the waitress into a tizzy of some kind, one which of course I didn't understand.  My host eventually explained that the restaurant did not serve hot tea.  Hello, am I in Japan?  Instead, the waitress excitedly brought us over a different hot drink .... it was the water that the pasta was boiled in.  Ewww!  I don't even know what to call this -- and none of us at the table could understand why anyone would drink it.

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