Since March 11 2011, when Japan was hit by a heavy earthquake that was followed by a tsunami which devastated a large area, I realised how little I know about Japan, a country that is part of our lives every day. Think of all the electronic devices you have. All of them are either completely made in Japan or at least contain Japanese products. Here in Germany, one of the kids' channels shows animes all the time (not necessarily the good ones). When I was in my early teenage years, some of my favourite shows were animes. I still like watching Sailor Moon, although I now see how cheesy it is. But as a teenage girl, I loved all the romance in it and the idea of having a soulmate that you've loved throughout different lives and worlds.
One of my favourite shows even today is Detective Conan. I love detective stories (I'm a huge fan of Monk and Psych, too!) and Detective Conan is very losely connected to Sherlock Holmes, one of my all time favourite book heroes. Unfortunately only the first 300something episodes were translated into German. Some fans sat down and translated the other 400-500 episodes with subtitles on youtube, so I listen to the Japanese conversations while reading the subtitles.
Anyway, since the catastrophy I also made it a major topic in my Geography classes and got more and more caught up by the fascination with that country. I bought several books on Japan and when we visited this year's book fair, Japan and Japanese culture was one of the big topics. I bought several mangas there and found several series that I like reading.
I even got myself some self-learning Japanese language books, but as with crafting, I am just lacking time to sit down and learn the two alphabets.
The whole cosplay idea is still a little strange to me, especially when boys dress up as female characters. Some kids, however, put a lot of time and money into their costumes and I wouldn't mind wearing one during carneval, too. But I guess with being almost 29 I am too old for walking around in a costume at the book fair. *sigh* ;)
I've always loved Asian food, too, and I have now several favourite Asian restaurants we go to on a regular basis. One of them we discovered during "Japan week", an event in cooperation between Frankfurt and Japan that has taken place several times in the past few years. For me, it was the first time I've been there. We discovered it accidentally on our way to the museum to visit an Egyptian exhibition. They had several places throughout the city with Japanese events all week. As we didn't know about it we didn't get any tickets for the tea ceremony or the theatre, but we still visited the open air stage to see the performances there. Around the stage you found a mixture of Japanese and German food booths. Of course, during Japan week I am not going to eat German Bratwurst, you just have to try the Japanese food. And what a good decision that was! Our new favourite restaurant MoschMosch had a booth there and immediately won us over with their Red Curry, a wonderfully mildly spicy chicken and vegetable dish on noodles and curry sauce.
They also had a booth there from Osaka that sold octopus balls. We had never eaten them before and the queue was so long, so it had to be good. The first time we waited in line for about 40minutes and my lovely husband almost started a fight. There was this guy trying to cut in line and my husband told him off. The group of people waiting right behind us jumped right onto that discussion because they were also annoyed by people constantly sneaking in somewhere before us. That moment I wished I didn't know my husband! Luckily, the guy was smart enough to leave. I am pretty sure the guys behind us would have beaten the crap out of him if he hadn't.
Now, y0u wonder, were these octopus balls really that good that someone would risk a fight for them? Yes, they were! They were deliiiicious! Their booth even had to close a day early because they ran out of ingredients so fast!
Now, why am I telling you all about my new obsession? Because my wonderful husband took me to Frankfurt today. We shopped at the Asian store (I bought a microwave rice cooker, which means I can make sushi rice to take in a lunch box! - and I bought 3 super big Japanese manga books that were on sale for only 3 Euros each), looked around the Manga department at the book store, and then we had dinner at MoschMosch. We got Edamame and, of course, Red Curry! Mmmmmm! It was a perfect afternoon after a rough week at work.
And tomorrow I will make sushi!