The joy (and sorrow) of living in a big city like Tokyo (or any other major Japanese city) is that there is simply so much to take in and do. For instance, just looking out the window on my Toyoko-line route I see dozens of restaurants, bars, stores that call to me. But, who has time time or money to visit each one?
The issue is further compounded by the fact that Japan lives vertically. The cute little izakaya you see on the ground floor is only the start, there are bars on the higher floors, hidden stores only known by connaisseurs, little restaurants hidden in the rojiura (back streets), out of sight until you turn the corner.
It would take a lifetime to discover everything Tokyo has to offer. I find that both exciting and a little sad. Exciting because I will never run out of new discoveries. Sad because I want to know everything, and can't! (yay for Type A personalities?)
But, I am grateful to those who become my teachers and companions in exploring the city, showing me their favorite hideouts from the rush of the metropolis. For instance, last Sunday I met with Y-kun for drinks, then dinner at Kokoro-ya in Nakameguro. A native Osakian, Y-kun spent his university years in Kyoto, and so found this little piece of the old capitol in the new. Definitely a place I would recommend, with the delicate, mostly vegetable based cuisine I miss so much :) The yuba shashimi and Japanese turnip with white miso were particularly amazing!