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My escape to Little Tokyo

So, I did exactly what I said I was going to do yesterday and took a half day down in Little Tokyo and pretended I was in Japan and out on the town treating myself. I simply love my escape days!

I drove into downtown LA and found my way to Little Tokyo. I decided to skip the metered parking as I planned on taking my time there so I opted to pay the $4 and parked in the big lot. I had my market bag with me, the one that's made of string and rolls up into a ball as I had some shopping to do.

I had an appetite and a craving for Ramen, the sun was shining, the day was mine and I felt that sense of joy I always feel when I pull into Little Tokyo.

And so I begin…

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I walked up first street to my favorite Ramen place Daikokuya, plunked myself down at the counter, whipped out my journal, and prepared to eat and write. They all recognize me there now as I have become a bit of a regular. I am a creature of habit.

I immediately ordered the house Ramen which comes in this huge bowl big enough to wade in and is a delicious mix of pork so tender it melts in my mouth, pickled egg, egg noodles, scallions and this broth that makes my toes curl it's so damn good. That and a diet coke with a plate of fresh lemons to squeeze in and I am good to go. My meal with tip was all of $12.
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Have I mentioned that I love my public solitude? When I sit at that counter a tremendous peace comes over me. I especially love that Daikokuya is always packed with Japanese people. It is the mark of a restaurant that caters to its own. As it should be...


Once I was sated from my meal and ready to roll, I made my way out onto the street, crossed over and wandered through the Japanese Village to see if there were any bowls I wanted to nab. I wasn’t quite ready to schlep the bowls around with me yet so I walked over to the big Japanese market Marukai in the new mall attached to the Otani Hotel and loaded up on my green teas ($1.28 each!), and some fruit. I whipped out my string bag and happily filled it with my market booty.

I was ready for something sweet by now so opted to go to Mikawaya, my favorite place for gelato in Little Tokyo (Gelato is the rage in Little Tokyo now!), and decided to have some traditional Mochi ice cream instead. I tried the red bean and the green tea (75 cents each) and sat outside in a free chair and savored them like mad. The green tea was a bit funky but the red bean was nothing less than heavenly. I was a happy little tutu eating my Mochi as the tourists walked by...
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I then popped back into the little shop where I usually buy my bowls and cat food dishes and after much deliberating I went for two little porcelain dishes for my girls and I bought myself a small bowl for my yogurt and granola. All of their dishes are made in Japan and all three dishes were a mere $6.00! Again, this all fit into my string bag. I try to avoid using plastic bags whenever I can and I almost always have my own market bags on me now. If you don’t recycle, I have nothing to say to you.
It’s our planet people!
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By now the sun had fairly well cooked me and I was ready to see where the rest of the day would take me.

We can always find ways to get away, even in the place we live. I highly recommend being a tourist in your own city or town...

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Comments (4)

Maria:

What a great day you had! It sounds like so much fun :-) Your description of the ramen made me want some.

Here here on the being a tourist in your own town. We become jaded about what all is offered and can't see the beauty and wonder that others do in our city. But if we just open our eyes and pretend it's not ours ... amazing and wondrous things happen!

Thank you for sharing your city with me :-)

Kathy:

Maria,

A true adventurer always seeks out new adventures, as you well know. I am excited to travel within my own city. I love seeing the city through a new lens. It gives me a fresh perspective on things!

Kathy:

Sandi,

You got that right!!

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