My wife felt sick all day today. She slept all day and didn’t have the energy to cook dinner. I don't cook. I swear that if I was not married then I would still subsist on sandwiches and cold pizza like a university kid. My helplessness is pathetic. So I walked 300 meters down the hill to the local fast food restaurant called “Mosburger.” (“MOS” stands for “Mountain,” “Ocean,” “Sky,” although most people don’t know that.) Mosburger’s menu is considerably fresher and more delicious than your average greasy spoon joint. I ordered the MOS chicken burger, onion rings (“onion furai”) and a green salad and told the cashier guy it was takeout (“oumouchikaeri” or even just “teiki outo”). I waited a few minutes and watched them cook the burger and onion rings, take the salad out of the refrigerator, and take ready orders to the tables where other customers were waiting to eat in. In due order my stuff was ready and placed in two plastic carry bags: one for the burger and onion rings; the other for the green salad. Or so I thought.
When I stepped out of the shop the pedestrian light at the crossing just outside was green, so I immediately crossed and began walking quickly back uphill towards home in the freezing February night air. When I was almost home I heard running feet behind me and a voice calling. I didn’t stop. I never stop and rarely even turn my head when people call me, or cyclists ring their bells, etc. Why should I? Then the person ran up beside me which is when I saw that it was the cashier from the restaurant. He forgot/neglected to put the green salad in my bags and came running after me in nothing but his street clothes and the restaurant’s uniform apron and paper hat to conscientiously deliver the salad that I paid for. When I left the restaurant I crossed the street and headed homeward so fast that by the time the cashier noticed that he still had my salad he couldn’t catch me. I was already well up the hill towards home. I was easy to spot, though, because I was the only foreigner around, and the only foreigner carrying two white plastic bags from Mosburger. That’s pretty good customer service, don’t you think?
The thing about not stopping and refraining from turning my head if people call out to me on the streets is about control of my own body. I want to control myself, not be controlled by others, and I want to try to move gracefully, not flounder around like a tourist who can't focus his attention on just one thing. I want to harmonize myself with nature. It's a spiritual thing. Or, maybe I'm just an asshole. I am, I guess. Since junior high school I've been training myself to walk with my eyes cast downward. Eyes can be so rudely intrusive.
Mosburger is a pleasant place to eat in. It's comfortable and is designed to cater to high-end fast food consumers, if there is such a thing. I've heard that the chain caters to the affluent young adult female market in its interior design, menu selection, menu design, etc. But, you know, it was a freezing night and I wanted to scurry back to my hole, crawl into my futon, and watch the 1969 Michael Caine movie "The Italian Job" on DVD. I haven't watched it in years - like thirty years. Although it's aged a bit it's still a good movie.