Friday, November 7, 2008

Eating Burgers and Hanging with Tommy the Painter

I don`t always write about my adventures with Tommy. I have written about hanging with Tommy a few times in the past but most of my adventures with him I usually keep to myself. I decided that maybe I should write about running around with Tommy more often. He is after all the first friend I made in Tokyo. Actually, he was one of the first people to even talk to me. In Tokyo I have found that it is rare for people to talk to someone they do not know. Tommy is different. He is friendly and always enjoys meeting new people. Although, this Thursday I had a dual motivation for heading into central Tokyo.

So, this Thursday I venture out into central Tokyo looking to get into something. I decided to try out this new shop in Omotesando which only sells the McDonald`s Quarter Pounder with cheese. I found out about it from Neil at I must give him credit and a big thanks for both finding and sharing this place with the rest of the world. It was a real trip for sure. It is set up to look more like a night club than a fast food place. Painted in all black the place is not as welcoming as a regular McDonald`s. The menu is very simple and straight forward. You get too options to choose from; Double Quarter Pounder with cheese set for 600 yen or Quarter Pounder with cheese set for 500 yen. Well, I just went with the Quarter Pounder with cheese set because McDonald`s really is bad to be eating in the first place. I have to say it was damn good! I have not had a Quarter Pounder since I left the states almost eight months ago. It was as good as I remember. So, if you want to try an odd place for lunch give this one a try for sure.

After getting myself all bloated off of a big nasty burger I needed to walk around a little. It is so easy to go on a little walkabout in Tokyo. There seems to be an endless amount of sides streets and back alleys to explore. I headed into the back section of Harajuku. I do not often go that deep into Harajuku but from time to time I like to see what is going on around there. It is usually not all that crowed in the back section of Harajuku. Most people stick to Takashita street, the bridge at Yoyogi park, or the main side streets across from Takashita. The far end of Harajuku offers some really nice coffee shops along with some mid-scale fashion shops to explore.

The only thing out of the way I saw on my little walkabout was this odd little man pacing up and down the street with a compass and a writing pad. He kept walking and staring at his compass. Ever so often he would stop to write something on his writing pad. I have no idea what the hell he was doing but he seemed to be enjoying himself. He was going at it hardcore. I was wondering when a sparse car would come by and crash right into him? I also wondered if he even cared if a car hit him? Maybe he was trying to map out something. In my twisted thought process I stood around watching him making up little explanations for his strange actions. The craziest one I came up with was that he was trying to decode a special message giving to him by aliens so he could join them in space. After about 10 minutes or so the entertainment factor of watching the compass guy wore off and I made my way to the bridge at Yoyogi to see if Tommy was hanging around.

Sure enough as soon as I stepped foot on the bridge there was Tommy with a smile and a big hug. Now Tommy is a keen type of guy so he started talking at the speed of light about what has been going on since the last time me met. He usually does this until I start talking at the speed of light eventually leading to both running out of things to report on. He always has some interesting news to report about Yoyogi and Harajuku. The weekend festivals and the cops are two of his favorite topics. He is the expert when it comes to knowing the movements and behavior of the fuzz in Yoyogi park and Harajuku. I enjoy listening to him talk about what the cops have been up to as of late.

After helping him store this paintings in a locker in the subway we walked over to Shibuya for a little while. Tommy was hungry so we stopped at one of the many great curry shops he knows about. I think he might know about every good curry shop in Tokyo. Every place he has taken me to or suggested offered damn good curry at a great price. If you want to eat good curry in Tokyo just ask Tommy. Anyway, we went into this place and he ordered a chicken soup curry. I did not order anything but he was nice enough to order an extra side of rice and share some of his curry with me. It was really tasty curry!

After eating he wanted to show me a `better place` to buy that odd little, and 100% legal, herb we enjoy called spice. The usual head shop to buy the stuff is really expensive so Tommy found another head shop with much lower prices. He got a big packet of the stuff for only 3,000 yen; the other place charges over 7,000 yen for the same amount. After buying it we went back to Yoyogi park to hang out. Along the way he bought some beers. There is nothing like hanging out in Yoyogi park after dark drinking.

We went to an area in Yoyogi park over looking the pond. It was a nice view even though it was pitch dark. So, we sat there drinking some beer, smoking spice, and listening to some music from Vietnam provided by a little tape player. We talked a lot about life in Tokyo. We are both in agreement that a person cannot be normal and live in Tokyo. People who try to live normal in Tokyo end up going half crazy. I think this is very true in many ways. I believe that most people in Tokyo do stuff that they do not tell most people about. Just go to Shinjuku for proof.

It was a good evening but I could not hang out with Tommy all night. I had to go home and attend to my gal. She has been feeling a little under the weather as of late and needs me to make her feel better. Good thing I actually enjoy being at home attending to her or it would drive me nuts!

As always I look forward to hanging out with Tommy again soon. I never know exactly what we are gonna get into.


Neil Duckett said...

Glad you liked the burger man.

billywest said...

Gotta get to Quarter Pounder this weekend; I've been good and avoided junk food all week, so I deserve it.

TheGhost said...

Go for it Billy! It is well worth it.

john turningpin said...

I must say, I'm curious about this "spice" stuff!

TheGhost said...

Maybe you should try it with me sometime. I am always looking to make a good friend.

Anti-douche-bags said...

"I do not often go that need into Harajuku but from time to time I like to see what is going on around there."

Me often need either douche bag!

TheGhost said...

Your having fun making fun of me. I can tell. Enjoy yourself.