Last week at OIST an anthology post

Physics ?? Comments Sun 21 December 2014


My last week at OIST has just finished, and due to a 30 minute presentation I had to give on Friday, my research productivity amped up leaving little time for posts. I even fell into the same hole I had in my honours project - namely, last minute research the day my presentation/thesis was due (both times involved entanglement simulations, strangely enough).

In typical me fashion, with my presentation scheduled for 3pm, I wisely decided to stop doing research at 2:15pm and instead start my slides.

It was so close. I finished just in time (I remember glancing down at my wrist when done: 2:58pm).

So; here's a quick run down of things that happened this week.

Pancake Art

The Japanese classes had their annual potluck lunches, where everyone 'brings a national dish from where they are from and sits around politely conversing in Japanese, ugh', I was later informed by Lee. Jérémie though, being much more enthusiastic, decided to make crepes to represent Belgium, and so he booked out the community kitchen, made two batters, and invited everyone along to create some crepe art.


My Homer Simpson. If only I didn't mess up the ear!

The fun arose in having to draw everything backwards, due to the pancakes being flipped. Which sparked massive debate on the number of horizontally symmetric kanji, and some amusing mistakes ('Uh, was this crepe meant to say End of Year Party? Because it reads more like Tomorrow Party Forget').



We'd all assumed attempting the OIST logo (a stylized shisa) was a lost cause due to its complexity - that was until Michael stumbled upon a flyer in the kitchen which had accidentally printed the OIST logo backwards (what are the odds of that?).


Michael's OIST logo crepe

Yakiniku 'Last Supper'

With Michael, Adi, and I all leaving this weekend within the space of three days, the group decided to have a going away meal at a yakiniku restaurant down in Okinawa City. Which was amazing. Everyone pays a set price (in this case, ¥2490), and then the entire table has access to a tablet with a massive variety of meats, vegetables, rice, ramen, etc, which are delivered to the table and cooked by us on a grill in the center.


Ordering dishes

Oh, and the best part? It's all you can eat.

'I wouldn't mind more of that really marbled beef...'

'Oh, which one was that?'

'No idea.'

'Hmm. Might as well order all the beef items to find out!'


Hours later, and still ordering more

There is a leftover fee, however, and although we ordered food non-stop, we managed to avoid it by simply being massively hungry and eating everything in sight.



Case in point: when last orders were announced at 11.30pm, there was a mad dash to order multiple dessert platters as Adi looked on in horror (you guys ordered more?!). Even after that, Tania and I were still lamenting the fact that we could do with some more beef.

CoCo's Curry House

Ever since we had arrived, Michael and I had been intrigued by CoCo's Curry House, a semi-fast-food curry franchise that's expanded to the US, Singapore and more. Finally, we managed to find time and transportation to make it, dragging Tania along (who was less than impressed with going to a franchised restaurant, never mind her distaste for Japanese-style curry).

'Look, even the locals eat here!' I started to say as we entered, before realising the restaurant was filled with American soldiers.

'Riiight, locals.'

I think at this point I tried to argue, well, technically they are locals, but knew it was a lost cause.


Michael puzzling over the millions of combinations available

Used to making, well, fast decisions at fast-food places, we were suddenly overwhelmed with the choice available; not only do you choose the main component of the curry (fish, beef, ribs, chicken, seafood, vegetables, and more), but you also choose the curry sauce flavour, amount of rice, and spice level.

And not only that, but each choice increased the total cost, which hit Tania the hardest after ordering spice level 10. (The menu informed us that if you pick something beyond level 3, you must have attempted all previous spice levels at some point. But Tania had no trouble ordering level 10 - I mean, how would you prove it anyway? CoCo's Curry House Spice Certification?)

I ended up ordering a level 3 curry with crumbed beef and beef ribs (they both looked so good!). And it was pretty decent; Tania (reluctantly) admitted that it was her first okay Japanese curry, although still not in the same league as an Indian curry.

Tags: japan okinawa japanese food