We’re sitting in a starbucks-a-like coffee shop on Saturday morning with our morningu setto (say in a Japanese accent, it makes sense) of iced coffee, a single, inch thick, slice of toast, a hard boiled egg and a small dollop of potato salad.
Opposite us, a girl of about five or six drinks grape juice and practises writing kanji on her father’s iPhone while he reads the paper. An elderly couple next to them drink coffee and eat boiled eggs. They chat with easy familiarity and I’m sure they’re married, until he gets up to leave and they part with the formality of acquaintances. Every so often a pallid, waxy looking, man will buy a single cup of coffee and disappear downstairs to the smoking room.
Through the large windows overlooking an intersection, we can see elderly ladies with sun visors and shopping baskets, on bikes, weaving past pedestrians at the crossings, while giant crows sit on top of the traffic lights, cawing in the still, grey, morning air.
Across the road, surprisingly undishevelled young people pour out of a club and pile into taxis. The girls have light brown hair piled unfeasibly high on their heads, hawaiian tans and enough gold jewellery to make a pirate proud. The boys are still wearing their Friday work suits.
We finish our breakfast and start our day.