A Tale of Ramen

I was in the mood for ramen today, so walked to Yutenji, which is a rather nothing kind of neighborhood. I should know; I used to live there. But it has a good Chinese restaurant, which features Beatles Muzak played on traditional Chinese instruments, and that’s just weird enough to appeal to my taste. I was starting on my noodles when I heard some other music and a marching band passed by the restaurant’s big picture window.

A marching band? In Yutenji?


This definitely merited investigation. Turns out it was the Meguro Ward Traffic and Everyday Safety, Anti-Crime and General Well-Being Festival. Who knew?

The band marched to the grounds of an elementary school with a strange gliding sort of step as if each member was trying to hold a 100 yen coin between their butt cheeks.

A program of entertainment followed. First was a band consisting of 100 kindergarten kids. They were predictably awful, but does it get any cuter than this?

PENTAX DIGITAL CAMERAWell, maybe. The next act was ballerinas…

PENTAX DIGITAL CAMERA…then (thankfully brief) performances by bands from an elementary, junior high and high school. Then taiko drummers, which are always a treat….

PENTAX DIGITAL CAMERA…and some kind of Tai Chi-dance-meditation-probably-more-fun-to-do-than-watch thing…

PENTAX DIGITAL CAMERA…and then the marching band returned for a grand finale, playing Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah and Hot Stuff.

PENTAX DIGITAL CAMERA The whole thing was surprisingly fun, mostly in its unexpectedness and cheese factor. Even after all these years, Tokyo doesn’t fail to surprise and entertain.


9 thoughts on “A Tale of Ramen”

  1. Sounds like you stepped into a bit of a surreal landscape, a Hello Kitty, meets adults and turns them into small children kind of thing. But, the weirdest thing is the Ramen at a Chinese restaurant…no? Please explain.

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