I Think I'm Turning Japanese
Yesterday I saw Dan off at the airport. We were in a bit of a hurry to catch the 2:40 limousine bus to the airport. We still wanted to grab some noodles and hit an ATM before we got on the bus, which gave us exactly 22 minutes. I hate cutting it too close at the airport, so if we waited till the 3:00 bus, it would have been way too close for comfort. But Dan wanted noodles, and my stomach was starting to rumble too. What could we do? Grab a dehydrated Cup Noodle at the combini while Dan grabbed some money? Sit through an hour ride on the bus while I only got hungrier (and therefore crankier) and wait to eat at the airport?

Then suddenly it was as though the clouds parted and the gods smiled down on us. As we emerged from the short tunnel connecting us from the bus stop to the road where 7-11 (and the ATM) was, I saw the katakana for "Ramen." Being an odd hour of the day, I wondered if the ramen shop was open, but then I saw steam emerging from the part between the red curtains, and I saw the legs of a couple customers peeking out from beneath the banner. It was a standing ramen shop! One of the few eating experiences I had yet to enjoy. Here is where a hungry person on the go could grab a delicious bowl of noodley goodness without even bothering to remove their coat or sit down. You didn't have to waste precious moments flagging down a waiter, or ponder an indescipherable menu. Instead, you can slurp your noodles and literally walk away within minutes.

We walked up to the counter and were immediately handed two glasses of cold tea, and I hesitantly said "Buta no ramen?" Which roughly translates to "pig's ramen?" The lovely woman said "Chashumen?" And, because I didn't know what the proper word was, I just said "Hai! Futatsu de!" And less than 2 minutes later we were presented with two steaming bowls of lovely ramen with a generous portion of sliced pork on top with onions for garnish. I took a little sip of the broth threatening to spill over the lip of the bowl. Mmmm! Oishii deshita yo! Dan and I basically slurped and chewed in silence. Before half the bowl was gone, I was already getting full. I had to give some extra pork to Dan because I could hardly finish my serving. This was not your freshman year ramen staple! This was the real thing!

We managed to order and eat within 10 minutes, affording us enough time to stop by 7-11 for money and water, buy bus tickets, and board the bus with a couple minutes to spare. Now I know where I need to go when I need a quick bite. For cheaper than a crappy McDonald's set-o (and much faster to boot), I suggest hunting down a standing ramen shop for a delicious bowl of noodle heaven!
Dan slurping and probably making a mess...
Next up: Rafute!
4/28/2011 05:04:22 pm

Thumbs up for the Ramen Stand...did it twice. I noticed, though, that there are no women/ladies but me!!! The first time - Erica & me, the second time, just me! Is it because the Japanese female should not be in such a place? I wonder...


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