Japan/USA diary, day 5

Friday 5 June, 2015. 16:30

I got up this morning for the usual routine of heading out to the convention centre on the subway, buying some rice things for breakfast at the 7-11 near there, and then eating them in the warm shelter of the convention centre as it was very cold out. There was also a driving drizzle, making it rather unpleasant. I tried an item with pink rice today, and it had sweet adzuki beans in it, which was nice. I didn’t get anything sweet this morning, figuring I’d tried enough strange sweet things.

Sugar Margarine Snack!
Sugar margarine snack… mmmm…

The meetings today were more administrative than the last two days, with a lot of summaries and recording of action items and resolutions happening. As a national delegate, I had to attend the administrative working group meeting, which was at 13:00, but the bonus was they supplied a very nice boxed lunch with a wide mixture of meat, rice, and vegetables in it. The afternoon session was the final plenary, with a couple of votes on proposed standards drafts. These went predictably since everyone’s intentions had been hashed out during the previous two days. We also voted on about 40 resolutions to do various things, as well as votes of thanks for the organisers. All of these passed unanimously.

ISO Bento lunch
Bento box lunch provided by the ISO meeting.

We wrapped up about 15:30 and broke up for the final time, with goodbyes to various people we won’t see again until either the next WG18 meeting in Sydney, or perhaps the next Plenary in the USA in 2017. I travelled back to the hotel with Ken, bumping into Jurgen and Evert on the way. I’ve arranged to meet with Margaret, Ken, and Jackson for dinner at 18:00 tonight. Before then, I’ve had a shower to freshen up and am just relaxing a bit.


Scott Geffert also showed up for dinner at 18:00, and the five of us went out to a place Margaret had spotted just a couple of blocks from the hotel. She’d taken a photo of it and showed it to the hotel staff who said it was a good restaurant, so we all agreed to try it. Margaret was keen as she’ deepen they had horse sashimi on the menu and wanted to try it. Everyone was game, and when we arrived the rest of the menu also looked good, so we got a table in a small room and started ordering things from the picture menu. There was no English so we just picked what looked good. Jackson translated a few things with his Google translate app, confirming the horse sashimi. It was thin slices of what looked basically like raw beef. I had a piece and couldn’t really tell the difference from beef.

Farewell Sapporo restaurant
Forewell dinner restaurant.

Other things were more tasty, including a large platter of mixed sashimi with tuna, salmon, a white fish, a large whelk-like mollusc, two types of roe, scallops, and sea urchin, garnished with seaweeds and leaves. We also got some skewers of grilled pork with onions, dim sim like dumplings, grilled crab meat served in a crab shell with seasoned potatoes and mushrooms, daikon slices with large roe on them, and some prawns and mushrooms in a buttery garlic and anchovy sauce. It was all good, except for the whelk which was really chewy. Scott, Margaret, and Ken had sake, while I had white wine – the choice was either white or red. It was a little grassy and slightly sweet, perhaps a Riesling.

Hokkaido seafood
Part of the seafood platter.

After boisterous and fun dinner with lots of good conversation, we headed to the crepe place again! This time I tried a banana Melba crepe, which had strawberry ice cream in it. A good way to round off a good dinner. We went back to the hotel and I said goodbye to everyone as I will be leaving in the morning. Margaret and Scott and Jackson are staying another day and decided they will have to go to Beef Impact tomorrow for dinner – a restaurant we walked past near the crepe place – just because of the name.

Now it’s time for bed, before my flight to Boston tomorrow.

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