My son constantly surprises. Some days he will eat only bread, the next he wants only meat. When we were in Japan, he changed his mind every hour it seemed.
We happened upon a little okinomiyaki place at the end of our walk down the Philosopher’s Path. Little did I know that this was the same restaurant a friend had recommended to us. It was located just down the street from the Westin Miyako hotel on Sanjo-dori in East Kyoto.
The menu looked great. It was in our price range. Better yet, it was open and we were starving.
The restaurants had a small bar around the kitchen, similar to a sushi bar. A few tables with chairs were along the right side of the restaurant, while 4 low tables with cushions were in the back on a platform. The back section was empty, so the staff sat us there. They made certain we understood that the table was mostly a hot plate for the food to go on. Dek had been around these types of tables before, so we figured it would be OK. We slipped off our shoes and took a seat while Dek checked out the other tables.
Let me tell you, the tables were the most exciting thing for a 2 year old. So many bottles and canisters to check out. There was sweet sauce, seaweed flakes, fish flakes and more.
We ordered a variety of food to share, not really knowing what Dek would eat. I just had to hope he would find something he liked. If not, I could always dig into my bag for our emergency supply of raisin rolls and fruit squeeze packs.
The meal was a success. Dek tried a little of everything. He found the yakisoba the most entertaining since it is a mass of spaghetti like noodles he could slurp up.
We only had one minor incident while eating. I had continually reminded Dek that he was not allowed to touch our table. It was hot. He knew the oven at home was hot and he wasn’t allowed near it. A table that we were sitting at was a whole other story for him. After our meal, we shut off the table-top hot plate. I turned my attention for all of two seconds. That was just enough time for Dek to sneak his little finger in and check out this hot table mommy would not let him touch. Instantly his wails filled the restaurant. I grabbed his hand and threw it in my glass of water. A member of the staff rushed over with a huge bowl of ice water and a wash cloth.
After a quick inventory of his hand, I found just a tiny red spot on one finger. No blister, no missing skin. He was more surprised that it was hot than he was hurt. Thank goodness. Nothing makes my heart pound more than hearing my son cry out in distress. With a few hugs and kisses he was off exploring and schmoozing the other patrons. But he made a wide path around our table for the rest of our stay.