So I promised you I would write about this chef I am working for and I am glad I have had no time to write and more time to understand him because he is, like most Chefs I have met, hard to understand. And by understand I do not even thinking about the chasm of separation in language between he and I. For me, it is hard to understand all his motives. He is a dedicated business man, loving husband, slightly disparaging employer, good Chef, and all around traditional. So when I am combining al these in my head it becomes a bit hard to really understand this man, Yoshimi Tanigawa. Thus far he treats me as a pet, asking me to speak, and play with things like knives. Also he takes me to see things around the area. Which are sometimes momentously interesting like when he took me with him to visit his parents grave. And sometimes a bit ridiculous, like when he took me to go get his hair cut and had me wait in the car.
So initially I met the man dressed head to toe in a yellow jumpsuit, which in america is a bit outlandish but here no one seems to have the same American sense of embarrassment. I then had the pleasure of working with him which by no means is easy as a normal workday consists of between 15 to 19 hour workdays depending on the busyness of that season. And he can be generous, as he has been to me for the things he has been teaching me and showing me. Also he houses his apprentices in a nearby building. Though I think most americans would consider it more of a storeroom with beds and a shower. Now I want to state that I am trying to be as honest as I can, with no intention of making this seem like I am not grateful, because I am. I have my complaints like anywhere else I may go but no place can be that perfect. And also my understanding is limited in the fact that I do not speak japanese. So other than telling you of what I see, I can really only tell you of his accomplishments. He has built a successful traditional Kaiseki chef, won over Chef Morimoto in the Japanese Iron Chef, and taught many apprentices through a rigorous program of up to 7 years to become disciplined japanese chefs of varying skill levels. I respect him and his accomplishments as I continue to learn from this complicated individual.