And Now for a Double Header...
The first is to answer the question:
If I were to be marooned on an island, what five bloggers would I want to have there with me?
That question is a very difficult one, as it brings up all kinds of complicated issues such as survival necessities, psychological needs, group politics, social realities, sexual orientation, etc.. I also had to assume that, since she tagged me, Selba herself is automatically disqualified. Anyway, after a lot of careful thought, I came up with the following list:
Pandabonium - His impressive volume of wisdom would definitely come in handy when trying to survive on a tropical island, particularly since he has experience living on one!
Olivia - We could definitely use a touch of class to help keep us all sane (unless she goes insane first). Plus, I figure she could probably use a break from the madness that seems to be surrounding her these days.
FH2o - The master kayaker from Kuching would definitely be an asset, I think. He is experienced at sea kayaking around Pacific isles...and also seems to have a knack for turning just about any situation into an interesting experience.
Snabulus - I've known him a long time, and I trust his smarts, his outdoor skills, and his level-headedness (if you don't mind an occasional comment of "ass-wipe" or something of the sort). He'd also be very good at keeping us entertained.
Selba - Okay, I gave up and included her anyway. The first reason was that I figured we needed another (non-American) female member so Olivia wouldn't go nuts surrounded by all these eccentric, American guys. Also, since this whole thing is Selba's doing, anyway, it's only appropriate that she be dragged (drug?) into this, as well! I just hope she remembers her camera...
Okay, that's five. I hope we enjoy our island vacation with a minimum of bloodletting.
Okay...now for tag number two. The rules:
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)
Okay, that's done.
2. List out your top 5 favorite places to eat at your location.
Ack. This is more difficult. I don't go out to eat nearly as much as I used to, and there's not really a whole lot in this area. Well, anyway, the places that I can think of are:
Wordsworth - My wife and I (and also apparently Pandabonium and his wife) are crazy about this place. It is a tiny, little Italian restaurant that is easy to miss if you blink at the wrong time (not to mention hard to get into during peak hours...it's quite popular and only seats a couple dozen at most). However, the food is excellent and the prices are reasonable. Their forte is spaghetti, of which they offer an interesting and very wide variety. They have a number of other dishes as well as some very good soups, salads, antipasto, and dessert. It's also a good idea to look at the blackboard encircling the main dining room to check out the day's specials.
Hananoren (華のれん) - This is an Osaka-style pub-restaurant which is only about a five-minute drive from my home in Namegata City. It is mainly designed as a venue for parties, but it also has a number of regular, private tables for ordinary dining. It is famous for the fact that it has over a hundred varieties of sake (rice wine) available, many of which are produced by small, local makers. However, my family goes there because they have an excellent variety of traditional Japanese food. Their selection of sushi and traditional Japanese pub food (much of which would qualify as fish bait in the West but is very tasty) is very good. I especially like their tokudai ebifurai teishoku ("jumbo fried prawn set menu"), a mixed course which includes some of the largest batter-fried prawns I've ever seen! My kids like their onigiri (rice balls), which may sound like ordinary fare, but theirs are HUGE! It's a little on the pricey side, but not bad, and I'd say it's worth it.
Yamucha - This colorful, little Chinese restaurant is one of a few scattered around our area. Unlike most Chinese restaurants I've seen here, it is actually owned and run by Chinese. It includes a few party rooms, a bar, and several tables for regular dining. The prices are a bit on the steep side, but not too bad, and you do get a fair amount of food for your money. We mainly like the place because it's convenient, but they do offer a good selection and make an enjoyable meal.
Bamiyan - This is a Chinese restaurant chain owned and run by Skylark (a very cheap family restaurant outfit). There are a number of them in our area. My wife and I can't decide whether we like it or Yamucha (above) better for Chinese food (each has its own good and bad points), but Bamiyan is certainly the less expensive of the two. It also has a lot more tables available, though its popularity means it's probably not any easier to get in. Its self-service drink bar includes several varieties of Chinese tea in addition to the usual soft drinks, and its seasonal specials are often a treat.
Mos Burger - There are many hamburger chains here in Japan including the familiar American favorites McDonalds and Wendy's (but NOT Burger King [aka Hungry Jack's] anymore!!!! WAAAAAAAH!!!!!). However, the best by far has to be the homegrown chain known as Mos Burger. They make hamburgers the way they should be: nice and gooey. They also have chili burgers and chilidogs as well as onion rings (rare here) and all-Japanese rice burgers! "Mossu", as it is affectionately known here, often has really good seasonal treats, such as nachos (with real guacamole...a rare treat in these islands), Indian-style curry-nan hotdogs (YUM!), and other surprises. Generally speaking, I don't eat hamburgers as much as I used to, but Mos Burger is a nice weekend treat when we go shopping at the big Besia shopping center at the other end of Namegata City.
<3. Tag 5 other people (preferably from other countries/states)[..and let them know they’ve been tagged]
Pandabonium - since he also lives in my area.
Leilouta - since she's a Tunisian woman living in the U.S..
YD - since she's a Malaysian woman living in the U.K..
Tooners - since she's an American woman living in Bahrain.
Ladybug - since, being the gourmet that she is, I'm curious to see what she comes up with.
Now...I'll be surprised if any of those tags are answered, but hey...it's all clean fun, right? Okay, that's a wrap.