11:30am in Tokyo. As I type this from the counter of a small shop selling katsu breaded fried chicken, the sights and sounds of daily life are all around me. Rice from the kitchen’s rice cooker is steaming, and Japanese pop music is plodding along in the background. Strangely enough, the ‘Friends’ theme tune just came on, providing a rather surreal backdrop to my breakfast-slash-brunch-slash-lunch. The door to the shop is open, begging a cool breeze to come in and give us (ie. me and the two staff) a respite from the smoke spewed out by the oily fryers.
If I look right, bicycles and prams are slowly being wheeled past the shop; all of this interspersed with the random chatter you are destined to find the world over. “It’s hot today isn’t it,” one lady says to another. “I know, it’s going to rain later,” she replies. Weather chat. The world’s favourite small-talk subject. Indeed, the sky tells us all that it’s to rain in a few hours, sending most people indoors, or at the very least to the covered shopping arcade that runs through the area I’m in.
I will most likely finish up my chicken, grab a coffee and head home. On this particular Sunday I am quite content to be an un-explorer; to just chill and recover from a busy week past, and prepare for another one to come. Lately, it has felt like my life is moving at 100mph, and the city just as hectic. But on mornings like these I am happy to just listen to the sound of food frying and watch the two dogs sitting in a pram outside the door beside me.