One of the bad things about travelling via cruise ship is that all the food you eat is delicious and fancy and on the ship, which means you rarely get to experience any local food. In the past, my parents would squeeze as much sightseeing and education as possible into our trips, which meant food was not a priority.
This time, however, in a sudden stroke of spontaneity, my parent decided to let us have lunch in Okinawa! Very exciting.
While we were walking on the street, we passed by a ramen shop. “It smells so good!” I hinted sneakily. “Do you want to go in?” my parents asked. I almost didn’t believe them; I was so excited.
The restaurant we went to was so Japanese it didn’t even have an English name, so to this day I still have no idea what it was called! When we entered, we were greeted by a loud, colourful menu and a vending machine. We chose our dishes, then had to put money in the machine and press the appropriate buttons. It was very cool and different! Once the machine had collected our money, it spit out tickets (one for each order) which we then gave to the chef/waiter (I think he was literally the only person working there).
The restaurant was full, so we were told to sit at the last table available – one of those very short tables where you have to kneel or sit on your bum! We took off our shoes and I sat cross-legged on a cushion on the floor.
The food arrived shortly and it was super yummy! My parents and I each got a big bowl of ramen, plus gyoza (fried dumplings) to share! My father also marvelled at the ingenuity of the spoons; there’s a groove in the handle so that the spoon doesn’t fall into the soup!
I quite enjoyed my authentic Japanese ramen! Even if the restaurant was terrible by Japanese standards or is part of some random ramen restaurant chain (for some reason, I suspect this is the case!), I still loved eating somewhere real Japanese people eat! It made my trip to Okinawa so much more rewarding. And my parents probably liked it too because I wasn’t complaining about being hungry.
Well, that is that for my Asian adventures! Here are all of the other things I did during my trip.