On my first day out and about I happened across what will undoubtedly be one of my favorite coffee experiences here in Tokyo. Just behind a small neighborhood park that sits next to the massive Yoyogi park, is the aptly named, Little Nap Coffee Stand in a building that looks like it’s going to run out of itself.
The name is appropriate with only a couple seats for those while waiting, 2 staff work steadily and with dedication. The owner was out today but the young woman who prepared my latte trained in Vancouver and spoke excellent English. She commented on something I had been thinking about for a while and that is the relatively slow update of craft coffee in Japan, especially in comparison to other Asian neighbors. For those in Phnom Penh, we have good solid coffee, but there are only a couple places in the Penh I know trying to do full craft, one of which just opened a month ago.
Oh, so how was the coffee? Smooth as cream but I think I’ll try the espresso next time to give it the full appreciation.
One of the thing I miss the most about Japan is its convenient stores. I know that sounds funny if you’ve never been here, but if you have, you completely understand.
Not only do they have a surprising selection of fully edible, even healthy, meals that get heated up in super powered-microwaves that only the staff can use (but do so happily) but they also carry a good selection of high end stationary, a full supply of masks whether it be for health, pollution or privacy and this is a new one, they even have Cold Stone Creamer ice cream. Wash it all down with a bottle of Sake or something harder (whiskey vodka).
Answers to a few questions you are about to ask:
Yes. that non-alcoholic Suntory beer may be better designed than any beer can, anywhere.
Yes, cigarettes still come in so many flavors and there is no shame. Prices average about US$3.75-4.5 (American Spirits are 4.5).
No, I did not buy any cigarettes.
Yes, those are Edamame-flavored potato chips which means you are basically flavoring a beer snack with another beer snack.
Seven Eleven is actually Japanese. Really, look it up. Although many shops here are under the parent brand, “Seven & i”.
So out good friend Sunny left Phnom Penh a few months back and my wife jumped at the chance to buy her bike that I had a crush on. I’ve always insisted that most of the bikes in Cambodia come from Japan (most have registration stickers on them). I’m not sure of they are stolen or impounded when people leave them on the street or at train stations but I’d say 80% of the bikes I see in Cambodia can be traced back to Japan.
Sunny bought her bike at Orussey Market a couple years ago and it’s currently being loaned out to our friend Ms. Lee who is also in love with it and looking for her own (we are not selling!).
Anyway, I was walking near Yoyogi Koen here in Tokyo yesterday and happened across the exact same bike. No brand unfortunately but the same bike none the less.
The point is, well, there is not much of a point but maybe, “If you bought a used bike in Cambodia, someone in Japan is crying every time you ride it.”
I’m gonna take a short break from Doctor Who gifs and Harry Potter quotes, and also, I’m gonna ask for your attention, as I have to tell you a little story, it’ll only take a couple of minutes and I’ll try to make it as short as possible.