We eat all day. I start with a big breakfast as I know we’ll be driving about, and I travel better on full stomach. After visits to various people, suddenly it’s time for lunch–a large bowl of noodles and vegetables in broth prepared at home by Mikio and Akemi. Absolutely yummy and so filling. In Low German the saying goes: My teeth are swimming.
Then off again and before too long it’s home again for dinner. A feast of shabu shabu. Satiated, I think my poor stomach (and my pants) cannot stretch any further. Aching with fullness, all that is left for me—or so I think—is to return to my hotel and collapse into overfed stupor.
Then Mikio announces that Saki has traveled from Toyokawa to Love Sweets Antique bakeshop in Nagoya to buy a special local treat for dessert: toronama donuts. These are unbaked melt-in-your-mouth confections in brilliant colours that shine with glaze. (The Aichi-based Heart-Bread bakery chain also boasts a store in Ginza.)
Saki has waited in line for ages to procure the frozen delicacies which regularly sell out well before closing time. There is no way I can beg off and say I am simply too full. Ringing in my brain is Dylan Thomas’s line from A Child’s Christmas in Wales, “…the ice cake loomed in the center of the table like a marble grave.”
This might be the death of me, I think. If so, I die in Japan and I die bursting with delights. Come sweet death.