I Blog, Therefore I'm Tagged

I don't usually do "tags", but since I was tagged by the Moody Minstrel who knows where I live and could easily run over my bicycle with his BLUE Toyota RAV 4, I will agree to do this one. My bad luck, it's a two parter. It is also kind of perverse, as you will see, in that it first asks you to imagine being marooned on an island and then to think about your favorite places to eat. Who came up with that combination, I wonder? Anyway..

Part One:

If I were to be marooned on an island, what five bloggers would I want to have there with me?

Lrong Lim - this university professor is fit enough to ride his bike 20 km to work, loves the ocean and is a good gardener and fisherman.

Bonnie - raised in Hawaii, sharp as a tack, knows how to grow food, sail, do kayak rolls and paddle through ice.

Snabulus - a voice of reason and logic (even if the voice uses 4 letter words at times). An outdoors guy and the kind of person I want in my corner in a pinch.

@Low@ - an adaptable, adventurous person who isn't afraid to pitch in when there's work to be done. Besides, I'd like to spend some time talking with him.

Hill Country Gal - any woman who spends an entire morning knocking 2 inches of ice off a dirt road with a claw hammer so her husband can get to work, I want on my team.

Somebody remember to bring Wilson.

On to Part 2:

1. Add a direct link to your post below the name of the person who tagged you.Include the state and country you’re in.

Nicole (Sydney, Australia)
velverse (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
LB (San Giovanni in Marignano, Italy)
Selba (Jakarta, Indonesia)
The Moody Minstrel (Namegata in Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan)
Pandabonium (Kashima City, Ibaraki, Japan)

2. List out your top 5 favorite places to eat at your location.

For me this should read "List 5 places you eaten". We hardly ever eat at a restaurant. I could cheat and say "home" but I don't think that is the intent, so I'll list restaurants.

Wordsworth - ワーズワース - on Route 124 next to "WonderGoo"

Our favorite restaurant, which we have gone to many times, is Wordsworth. (Also a favorite of Moody and his wife). I wrote about this restaurant in the post Wordsworth, Pasta, and Daffodils. Excellent seafood, pasta dishes, deserts, and wines at very reasonable prices. The theme of the place is Wordsworth's poem "Daffodils". Nice atmosphere, Italian decor, friendly staff, good music - jazz via satellite.

Two others we've been to more than once are right across the street from each other on the street leading to the main entrance to Kashima Jingu (Shinto Shrine). They both specialize in soba (buckwheat noodles served hot or cold), which I like with vegetable and prawn tempura.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
This is よしのや (Yoshino-ya)

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
This is つかさ (Tsukasa) - (and my personal transportation device which gets over 600 mpg).

The food is good at both places (K disagrees and much prefers Yoshinoya), the staff is little more friendly at Youshinoya (the woman who runs it is one of those typical exuberant, always smiling Japanese shop keeper types) but Tsukasa has a nicer interior.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
One nice thing about many Japanese restaurants, especially in tourist areas (the shrine draws bus-loads of tourists on holidays), is that they have plastic models of the food they serve with prices in the window, so you can see if they have what you want and if fits your budget before going in.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Jonathan's <-(link)

Jonathan's is a family style restaurant chain we've eaten at a few times. Not a lot on the menu for me as most of their items include meat of some kind, but I have always found something, such as soup and salad, or pasta, or fish.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Since it is a family restaurant, when they are busy it can be a bit noisy (but I find it fun to 'people watch' families sometimes). The food has always been good.

Little House

Even though it's a bit of a drive, we've been to "The Little House That Serves Homemade Dishes In The Woods" at "Pocket Garden DokiDoki" twice and love it. In fact I did two posts about it which you can find by simply entering the word "yummy" in the search box above. The restaurant is located at an organic farm, market and garden shop.

They treat you like family there and the food, which is all organically grown, is presented "Viking style" as they call it in Japan - self serve and all you can eat. Rather than a few big offerings, they have a wide selection in smaller amounts that is constantly kept fresh. Plenty to please vegetarians and carnivores alike. On certain nights they have live piano music.

So, there's my five. We've also had really excellent meals at the Kashima Central Hotel's Japanese restaurant, "Yamaguchiro", and the top floor continental style "Sky Restaurant Planete", but they are both too pricey for us to make regular visits (though very reasonable compared to Maui's hotel restaurants).

3. Tag 5 other people (preferably from other countries/states)[..and let them know they’ve been tagged]

I can see you all backing up and putting up your hands to say "no, not me". I feel your pain. Besides, I don't know five people who have time to do this sort of thing who haven't already been tagged. So any of you who want to do this, consider yourself tagged. And bon apetit.


ladybug said...

They all look like lovely places. I'm especially interested in the "Little House". Like how "Viking Style" (we say Buffet, they say Smorgasbord)

Kind of reminds me of the "Chez Panisse" restaurant in Berkley...

And yes of course, I'd visit Fidji in a minute (despite my jet lag comment); perhaps I can hitch a ride w/Old Broad, if she doesn't mind a partner in the "liberal travel scholarship" award!

Swinebread said...

I hope Jonathan's is better than Denny's!

velverse said...

Japan, here I come :D

How come yoshino-ya feels different here :(

Pandabonium said...

Ladybug - I say potato K says jagaimo. The Little House is wonderful. The drawback is that it is over 45 minutes drive and not near anything else. Still, I want to go there again.

Swinebread - Ack! no comparison. It's operated by Skylark, the same corporation that runs Bamiyan Chinese that Moody likes.

I haven't gone in a Denny's in over 15 years and don't care to - there is one in Kashima if you'd like to do your own comparison test. ^_- Jonathan's has a far healthier and more appetizing menu.

Velverse - thanks for visiting from Kuala Lumpur. Come up to Japan and bring your appetite. :P

L B said...

Nice nice, very nice, but such a long tag!! *grin* Thanks for dropping at my place. I still want to come to Japan too...

Pandabonium said...

Hello LB. Thanks. Buon Appetito, Selamat menjamu selera!

Nicole Tan said...

I went to Japan 2 years back and men talk about getting fat there!!! and OMG I so need to visit where you are staying!! look so nice!!!!! next next next stop will be Japan again!! woo hoo

nice post and men your dog is so cute!!!!!!! :D

Pandabonium said...

Nicole - thanks for stopping by. Or should I say G'day. Hope you have a wonderful trip in Japan. Too bad you can't bring your cute doggy to play with Momo. :-p

The Moody Minstrel said...

I didn't even think about those shops by Kashima Shrine, but then again I know some other really good soba/udon shops in the area, too.

Neither of us mentioned the new Big Boy restaurant in Kamisu! Went there once...loved the grilled herb chicken and the salad bar, but everything else was steak. The kids loved it, but my "no red meat" diet restriction killed my choices. Oh, well.

I still intend to make a trip out to Little House one of these days. Maybe if Nicole does come to visit we should all go together!

Pandabonium said...

Moody - you probably know much better soba shops. These are mainly convenient at times, being close to the shrine.

I've never been to Big Boy in Kamisu (I'd probably have an even tougher time than you with the menu). Seeing it brings back memories though of the two Big Boy restaurants I had been to as a kid in southern Calif. Back then it was "Bob's Big Boy", long since it was bought out by the Marriott corporation.

If Nicole or any other of our blogger friends ever visit, lets do all go the "Little House" together.

QUASAR9 said...

Hi Pandabonium,
I would have thought rice, fish and vegetasbles were the staple

In fact is it not often said that Japan's diet was possibly healthier before they introduced american style big macs in a bun?

Pandabonium said...

Quasar9 - at home that is still the staple diet - at least in the homes I've eaten in. That is one reason we don't eat out but perhaps once a month or longer.

As more Western foods have come into the Japanese diet, it has had an effect. Initially, because of addition protein from meat, the population got taller (but no healthier). Now, there is too much meat, sugar, refined grains, etc. and Japan, like all developed, countries is seeing ill health effects from that - particularly diabetes.

On average, though, Japanese still have a healthier diet than Americans.

Don Snabulus said...

Boy, throw out a little sailor talk and a person is marked for life ;).

I will bet you didn't know I am an Eagle Scout (so is Moody), so either of us can build a mean lean-to or wickiup in a pinch. Moody would have been a better fire builder (I never could get a handle on that for some reason), but I have the advantage of cheating and bringing Ladybug with me (giving you 6 island cohorts). So there we are.

PS - Your RSS feed isn't updating my Bloglines for some reason. I will need to fix that because I am way behind on my Pandabonium reading now.

Pandabonium said...

Snabulus - I did know that Moody was a Eagle Scout, but didn't know that about you. Cool. I wasn't a scout, but one of my dad's sidelines was manufacturing survival kits for pilots - which I tried out when camping. I always carry a small kit with me on the bike, or when hiking, kayaking, etc. Starting a fire can be a bitchkitty without matches.

Ladybug is a welcome addition to the crew.

I don't know about RSS feeds, other than I have a feedburner account here: http://feeds.feedburner.com/PacificIslander

Whatever that is.

bonnie said...

I'm flattered! Gotta add the caveat that so far I haven't grown any actual edible food, just vines & seedlings. I have been looking at the squash blossoms & thinking they might be good stuffed with ricotta, dipped in the lightest of batters & fried. But as far as actual foodstuff, so far the main return has been entertainment!

I recall going to a Bob's Big Boy when I was small - can't remember if that was during a couple of years in California, or if maybe that goes all the way back to South Carolina (my actual birthplace, of which I have only the vaguest recollections).

Pandabonium said...

Bonnie - Well, at least you can grow a vine! That's more than a lot of folks.

I've been trying to comment on your blog, but get a message that I need to enable cookies. But I have cookies enabled so I don't know what the problem is.

bonnie said...

Glad to see the cookie thing got fixed, I was hoping it would be one of those weird glitchy things that eventually just goes away.

@ロウ 。LOW@ said...

Haha! Not sure why you wanted to bring me along but yeah, I think I can do better than Wilson (talking!) :)

Jonathan's is the first restaurant chain I visit in Japan. Reminds me of friends I had dine with.

I wonder when I'll meet them again, as much as when we will lost in some island somewhere and have all the time in the world!

Pandabonium said...

@low@ - I chose you for all the reasons I stated. Maybe there will be a Jonathan's on the island...

bonnie said...

OK, slight delay on the pickup here, but what do they sell at "WonderGoo"?

Do tell!

Pandabonium said...

Bonnie - Thanks - I thought no one would ever ask!

WonderGoo is a chain of second hand stores. Books, DVDs, games,jewelry, clothing, photo equipment, stereos, etc. Only been in it once and wasn't impressed. They also have an online store. Great name though.

Right now on their website they are advertising a new (not used) cosmetic(?) called "Buddha Nose Girl Balm" - I have NO idea!