I've always thought that “squid-on-a-stick” sounded like a good inoffensive swear. “Squid-on-a-stick, it's hot today!”
We're still in Tokyo. Last week, we were lucky enough to attend a free shamisen (Japanese guitar) class. We were awful, but it was still really fun. And I got to wear a kimono properly, for once, instead of sloppily wrapping it around me like a common dressing gown, as I have done on the few previous occasions I”ve tried putting one on:
After that, our hosts took us to a matsuri (festival) that was taking place all weekend. It reminded me a little of the street fairs in New York, with all the food stalls, the delicious smells, the games, and the noise. The festival's main event was to be the procession of the nearby temple's portable shrine, but that was taking place the next day, so we missed it. However, we did see the children's procession, as they practiced carrying a smaller, presumably ligher version of the shrine (the real thing weighs about four tons and requires the strength of two hundred men).
Now, I'm sure many people find the idea of squid-on-a-stick repulsive, but I love squid in any form, and this was definitely on my lengthy list of things to eat. Just charred on a grill, with a layer of sauce. It was the first thing I looked for when we hit the stalls, because I knew it was a typical matsuri street food.
Laurent went for a much more visually arresting version, with little octopi:
Everyone around the table thought it was quite cute. But it'd probably look a little weird eating this in Montreal, don't you think?