This July I was fortunate enough to spend a few days with Jean, Mats and baby Oliver in their new home, Tokyo. Here are some select photos from my trip:

Oliver and I in front of the Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum:


Playing Baby’s Mama

The inside of the ramen museum was not as I’d expected. First off, upon entering, I was greeted and then handed a Thai information packet. I love playing the “guess where I’m from” game, especially in Asia, but never have I been misread as Thai. Perhaps my Gobi Desert tan prompted the mistaken Thaidentity?

Anyhoo, the first floor of the ‘museum’, formally known as the Exhibition Hall, reminded me of the Home Shopping Channel with the various faux ramen displays. They showcased [in dioramas]everything from history to chinese influence to change in noodle consistency over time, just not in a manner I’d expected a typical ‘museum’ to do so. There was also a full wall display of instant ramen packets. Cool beans [noodles?] I guess Japanese museums are different and perhaps more creatively perplexing than American ones? The Ghibli Museum, as I will go into further detail later in this post, was also atypically set up. Oh the ways Japan stimulates my curiosities–all the more reason to love the country [and not just its food!]

The basement levels were even stranger. Take a peek:


Jean and I looked through my Thai pamphlet, which included a map highlighting the various ramen shops [and the specialty ramen broths] in the ghost-town-themed labyrinth. We opted for this:


“Eki”–Hokkaido style ramen with pork, chicken, scallion and garlic in a miso broth. So rich and delicious–oishii!!! Oh, and this was the mini-size fyi. I’d originally planned on ramen-hopping from shop to shop but this hit the spot and stayed.

It’s no wonder the museum offers monthly passes. It is not uncommon for locals to stop in after work and grab a bowl…or three.

[more to come…stay tuned…]

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