As we wake up on Day 2, it’s become painfully obvious that we need a new ranking scale for Tokyo – the Mel Anxiety Scale (MAS). Based on a scale of 1 to 100, where 50 is “Get me Atavan now!” and 100 is a a full-fledged coma, the MAS strives to capture the anxiety of being in Tokyo. Today, I am at about 48.
My top fears today are:
1. Fear of losing Brendan. Between the language barrier, the fact that all the streets look the same and I have absolutely no idea where I am, this is causing me serious anxiety. At least I think I’ve fooled Brendan into believing my death-grip in the train stations is really just a declaration of love.
2. The food. Those of you who know me know that I am a fussy eater and that my food issues are often a source of contention in my marriage. I have issues with textures. Issues with eating cute things (pigs excluded because of the joys of bacon). Issues with not knowing what I’m eating. So needless to say, I’m totally screwed in Japan.
I’m pretty sure I ate raccoon today. Even my go-to food (chicken) is a risk here – it could be chicken heart, chicken skin, chicken toenails, you never really know. Chicken breast is served rare (or medium rare if you are well, chicken). And then there’s the issue of eating implements – no forks in sight here, so I’ve had a crash course in eating with chopsticks. I get cramps in my hands. It takes me forever to eat. And I nearly hit someone with a flying tskune last night (random ball of meat).
I realize that most people love the food here and the Japanese take their food very seriously - but it sure as heck isn’t Benihanas or teriyaki rice bowls at the food court.
3. The rules. Not sure if it’s leftover Catholic guilt or not, but the fact that I am constantly unknowingly breaking all the rules is causing me stress. I really don’t want to offend all these nice people. “Happy Happy”. I’m trying folks, seriously.
So at this point, I’m only a 48 because Brendan has realized that constant atsukan (hot sake) helps calm me down. And the drugstores don’t sell Atavan over-the-counter.
Mom and Dad: Please come get me. He’s still taking good care of me but I’m hungry. (note from Brendan- your parents will realize you’re kidding here, right?)
But on a positive note, at least I’ll shed my post-wedding weight from our 2 month poutine tour of Toronto.