So, remember the post I wrote earlier about our first authentic Japanese meal? Scratch that. We experienced it today, in the town of Uruma-shi.
We found this little spot after we accepted our housing offer, mildly depressed and famished. There was not a hint of English anywhere – not on the signage, the menus, and surely not spoken by the staff. I wish I could tell you the name of it, if only I read kanji. We removed our shoes and sat Indian-style on the bamboo mats, and the waitress brought us a strange beverage that I can only describe as really, really watered down coffee. Parched, I remembered I had downloaded my Babel Fish translator to my iPhone, and I hastily typed out a request for water. I also used it to ask for a meal recommendation, since we were hopeless in understanding the menu, and there were no pictures to guide us (as we had seen in other restaurants in the more Americanized areas of the island.)
The meal and the experience did not disappoint, though I had no idea what to do with the raw egg included on my tray. I REALLY need to learn some Japanese. I hate being that fool American. But seriously, thank goodness for smartphone technology!