Friday, June 26, 2009

A week in Japan

We had the opportunity to travel to Japan last week. Saurabh had a conference there and Kabir and I joined him to make it a vacation. Although it was short and somewhat hectic, the trip was good and we had a nice time.
The biggest challenge of the trip was finding vegetarian food for us. Thankfully, we had already forseen the problem and had practically carried our kitchen with us. I took a little electric hot plate to cook food on, a pressure cooker, a hand blender and some raw material to make kabu's khichdi, oatmeal etc. We found a local supermarket from where I could get fruits and vegetables to make Kabu's food. I didn't have so much patience when it came to our own meals, so we usually just heated the frozen parathas that we had carried with us. On a couple of occasions we found a vegetarian or Indian restaurant and treated ourselves to a full meal!
So all in all, we were able to cope with the food issue well, though not without any glitches. On this trip, Kabu became overly fond of popcorn (or bubkun, as he calls it) and asked for it constantly when we were out sightseeing. Since I hadn't anticipated his sudden love for bubkun, we ran out of all that we had pretty quickly. So I had no choice but to look for popcorn in a Japanese store. We found it, but we couldn't read the label on the pack. Since Kabir is allergic to dairy (and egg and nuts), I was afraid that the popcorn would contain butter. In any case, we tried it and decided that it didn't have any buttery taste and so Kabu was back to enjoying his bubkun. On our last day there, we met with some friends who could read Japanese. I asked them to read the label, just to reassure myself that there was no dairy in the popcorn. It turned out that we were right - there was no dairy in it afterall. But oh, there were prawns and octopus in the oil and the flavoring! Can you believe that?! Who would want octopus in their popcorn??! My friends joke that atleast we now know that Kabir is not allergic to octopus...oh well.
I've already posted all the pictures on Picasa and Facebook, so in this blog I'm only posting some of my favorite pics of Kabir from the trip. You are welcome to see more on Picasa.

Playing in the hotel lobby

Golden Pavilion

Getting dressed to go out

On the rooftop of Kyoto Station Building


Japanese ladies loved him - they would give him gifts and candies and photographed him

Outside a Buddhist temple

A sunburnt Kabu

City bus ride

Tokyo City - playing on Odakyu building rooftop


Smita said...

Good that you joined Saurabh on his trip. It takes a lot of planning to prepare for the trip otherwise. Conference in Tokyo must have been big impetus to get ready.

asha said...

awesome pics Pooja! just saw them. Kabir looks very greek in long hair :). very cute!