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Thursday, May 11, 2023

TanboHiro: Ch 1 - Ep 13


Chapter 1

Episode 13: Food court.



"I'm so hungry!"


Kaho said as she left the fashion store.


Seram nodded her head in agreement.


I look at my watch and see that it is past 2 PM


No wonder they are hungry.


"Let's have lunch."


"Where do you want to eat?"


"The food court."




"By the way, you pay for your own food."


"Then we'll go to the food court."


Kaho is dissatisfied with my decision to eat at the food court, but when I tell her that I won't buy her food, her response changes 180 degrees.


"What is food court?"


"I could explain it to you, but we're almost there, so it would be faster for you to see it yourself."


The food court is on the same floor as the fashion store, so we arrived before I could explain.

Many chairs and tables were arranged in the open space, surrounded by various food and beverage stalls.


"Oh! There are so many stalls lined up! Are all of them food stalls?"


Seram expresses amazement as she observes the food court.


"Yeah, you order food at the stall of your choice, find an available seat, and then enjoy your meal."


"With so many food stalls, deciding what to eat is hard."


After I explain the system, Seram hesitantly wanders around the food court.

It seems she plans to take a circular route before making a decision.


"I'll order first and reserve seats for us."




Kaho decided what she wanted and got in line at the Tendon food stall.


I follow behind Seram as she looks around the food stalls and sometimes explain to her about the menu.


"Have you decided what you want to eat?"


"Ummm, it's so tempting I can't decide. They all look delicious."


Seram holds her head and ponders.


"Then why don't you order something we don't usually eat at home?"


"Something we don't usually have... How about bread?"


"Yeah, since we usually have rice."


"We don't have any bread at home because I prefer Japanese cuisine."


"Rice is good, but it's been a while since I had bread!"




What I have in mind is a Western-style menu that pairs well with bread, but there are no such restaurants in this food court.

However, there is a world-famous hamburger stall.

It's also a delicious dish served with bread.


"How about that hamburger stall over there?"


"What's a hamburger?"


"It's meat and vegetables sandwiched between bread."


"Oh, that sounds good! Let's try it!"


After I gave her the general idea, Seram got in line.


"Well, I'll give you some money, and you can order what you want to eat by yourself."


"Eeh?! Aren't you going to order for me, Jin-dono?"


"This is practice for you to shop alone. I'll be right behind you."


"Oh, okay. I'll try."


I had already taught Seram about money.


It would be better for Seram to be able to shop alone. This time, Kaho accompanies us, but there is no way I could accompany her when she buys underwear and other necessities specifically for women.

Since she learned math in her former world and can do simple calculations, she should be able to shop alone.


"Welcome! What would you like to order?"


"Ye-yes! Uh, well, which hamburger is delicious?"


I was a bit worried from the moment Seram spoke. As long as it's on the menu, there's no such thing as not delicious hamburger.

The waitress hesitates for a second but then realizes that Seram is a foreigner and looks at her kindly.


"Well. The teriyaki burger is our most popular option."


"Then I'll have that one."


"If you order a set, you'll get a great deal. Would you like to order a set?"




"It comes with fried potatoes and a drink. Ordering it as a set is cheaper, so I recommend ordering that."


When an unfamiliar term confused Seram, I stepped in to assist.


"Then I'll have a set, please."


"What size fries would you like? We have three sizes: S, M, and L."


"Hmm? If the price doesn't change, I'll take the L."


"Okay. Please choose a drink from this list."


"... Jin-dono, I don't know any of these drinks..."


Seram successfully answered the question about the fries' size, but she got stuck when choosing a drink.

The menu had labels and names of the drinks, but as someone from another world, Seram couldn't understand them.


"Just order orange juice."


"Okay, I'll have the orange juice, please."


"Certainly, Miss."


After some time, Seram successfully ordered her food.


"Huff. Shopping in this world is quite nerve-wracking. There are so many options, and it's complicated."


"Well, now you get it. Once you order something, you get used to it."


"That's right. I learned how to order a set. Next time, I should be able to order smoothly."


Seram sniffs and clenches her fist, wearing a strangely satisfied expression.

I imagine a future where everything will be sold as a set, and prices will rise.

Well, I guess she'll learn a good lesson then.


"Well then, I'm going to go order my own food. After you get your hamburger, join Kaho at that table over there."


I saw Kaho placing her tendon tray on a table and sitting at a table for four.

After Seram nodded her head, I went to order my own food.





After receiving my order, I joined Kaho and Seram at the table. Seram had patiently waited for me.


"You could eat first, you know?"


"Jin-dono has been accompanying me, so I don't feel comfortable eating first. I just wanted to wait for you, so don't worry."


"I see."


Eating it while it's still warm is best, but I can't force her if she doesn't feel comfortable eating first.

Seram is as loyal and serious as always. Although I think it's okay for her to be slightly more relaxed.


"How considerate of you, Seram-san. Jin-san, you've got yourself a really good wife."


"S-so, is that so?"


......Seram blushes red as she recalls our husband and wife cover story.

I'm getting used to it, but Seram seems to be easily caught off-guard.


"On the contrary, you should be a little more considerate."


Kaho was devouring a bowl of tempura rice in front of Seram.


"Tendon tastes best when it's hot."


"That doesn't mean you should eat it so fast."


There is only about a third of the bowl left.

When I sit down, she's almost finished eating. Just how fast can she eat?


"Now, let's eat."




When I sat down and clasped my hands, Seram also politely clasped hers.

Although she has only been here briefly, she has strangely become accustomed to saying "Itadakimasu."

After we finished the ritual, Seram unwrapped her hamburger with her hands and took a bite.

Then, her eyes widened in surprise.


"What a soft bread! It's so soft to bite into, and the flavor of the wheat spreads instantly! I've never tasted bread this good before!"


"It's funny how Seram is more surprised by the bread taste than the filling."


"Of course, the filling is great, but I didn't realize bread could be so soft and flavorful..."


"Well, it's a very popular franchise worldwide. They definitely use high-quality bread."


The high quality of the bread made Seram react like someone from another world, although Kaho laughed without realizing it.

Well, it's rare for people to eat a hamburger and focus on the taste of the bread.


"This is delicious. The combination of chicken and sauce is excellent. No wonder it's the most popular item at that food stall."


As Seram eats the hamburger, her comments leak out.

She was familiar with this type of food in her hometown. She seems to be thoroughly enjoying it.

For Seram, bread holds the taste of her homeland.

Perhaps I'll buy some bread when I go grocery shopping later.

While Seram eats happily, I also enjoy my zaru udon.

After adding white onion, sesame, seaweed, and wasabi to the dipping sauce, I dip the noodle in it a bit and slurp it up.

The noodles are firmer than those you get from cup noodles or those you buy from the store.

The noodles can be slurped easily, allowing you to fully taste their flavor.

In a hot season like this, it's refreshing to enjoy something cold like zaru udon.


"...... Jin-dono, isn't that considered impolite?"


As I slurp my noodles, Seram looks at me wide-eyed and expresses concern.


"No, you've got it wrong. That's actually the proper way to eat zaru udon."


"... Are you serious?"


"Yes, slurping the noodles when eating zaru udon is quite common."


Kaho responds to Seram's question.

I once saw a TV program that mentioned how foreigners don't have a culture of eating noodles. They are often surprised when they see Japanese people slurping noodles. I think it's similar in this case.


"Seram-san, if you've never eaten it, you should try it."


"Oh, really?"


"Yes, you should try it. Take a bite."


Cold udon and soba noodles are delicious options during this season. They are also quite simple to prepare, making them convenient dishes to serve at the dining table.


However, if Seram has an aversion to these foods, including them in our meals would be challenging. I don't want to go through the trouble of preparing a separate dish for her. Ideally, I would like her to enjoy the same food without any aversions.


With this in mind, I offer to share my zaru udon with her.


"But these are the chopsticks that Jin-dono used... If I eat with these, it will be an indirect kiss..."


I realized I hadn't thought this through when I heard Seram's words.


"Eh? Seram-san is Jin-san's wife, right? Why do you worry about that now?"


I immediately tried to get another pair of chopsticks or a fork, but Kaho questioned her.

It's unnatural that she's my wife, but she's worried about indirect kissing.

If I saw a couple like that, I would also want to question their relationship.


"I, I'm just joking! I... I'll try it!"


After hearing Kaho's quizzical voice, Seram quickly grabbed my chopsticks.

Still unfamiliar with chopsticks, she struggled to hold them and desperately attempted to pick up the noodles.

Clumsily lifting the noodle, Seram dipped it in the sauce and brought it straight to her mouth.




But she didn't quite understand how to slurp and stopped halfway with the noodle in her mouth.

"Slurp the noodle as if you're sucking in your breath with your mouth!"


After Kaho explained how to do it, Seram could slurp the noodles.


"How's that?"


"Mm-hmm. It's quite delicious."


She seems calm, but her ears are bright red.

She's probably so overwhelmed by the indirect kiss that she doesn't even remember how the food tastes.

After Seram finishes tasting the food, she hands it back to me.

Of course, she also returns the chopsticks.

But with Kaho in front of me, I can't change the chopsticks just because my wife used them.

If I do that, she might think that there's something wrong between us or that we don't get along.

So I pretend not to care and continue eating with the same chopsticks.




The moment I put the chopsticks in my mouth, Seram made a sound, and her face turned red.


Stop it. It's not that I don't care about it either, so don't react like that.


Thanks to you, I can't taste my zaru udon.



 Seram ate Yokan and Mizu maju, which are Wagashi (traditional japanese sweets)

Check my article about Wagashi. 

Wagashi Wonderland: A Taste of Tradition and Artistry in Japanese Sweets





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  1. Just like hoe Europeans aren't bothered by growling bellies, they also aren't as uptight about indirect kisses. It's fun to see these little idiosyncrasies show up.


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