I’m a good customer of the Natural Lawson Store in Tomigaya. During my stay at the Saiseikai Hospital a few years ago, Takeshi Niinami, who was then CEO of the ever-growing Lawson chain, sent me boxes of their healthy bread. The hospital food wasn’t that bad, but the Lawson variety of delicious and healthy baked goods really helped. I’m sure there’s a Lawson’s somewhere near you. I buy my chia seeds and goji berries for healthy drinks at one near my apartment. My friend who ran Lawson’s is now a VIP at Suntory. Like many other companies, they’re getting more and more into medicines and health cures — watch some of the many commercials on TV and you’ll see what l mean.
NICK MASEE’S BIG CHARITY BLAST
Nick Masee, who’s head of Asian Tigers in ]apan, is also one of our city’s most generous philanthropists. ln addition to making his moving company one of the most professional and popular companies for VIPs moving from Tokyo to any place in the world or vice versa, he spends a lot of time helping many worthwhile causes, which include the YMCA and many others. One of his most successful fundraisers is his annual barbecue in his penthouse on Yamate-dori. I was really sorry I had to miss his most recent buffet, featuring a great view of the fireworks, and a lot of laid-back fun. From all reports, it was packed with interesting people enjoying delicious food, and a warm ambiance.
PAKISTAN AMBASSADOR AMIL’S YEAR-END DINNER
I celebrated New Year a bit early at a really special sit-down dinner hosted by Pakistani Ambassador Farukh Amil. I had been to a couple of barbecues on the embassy’s patio, but this was the ﬁrst time for me to party in his beautiful sixth ﬂoor residence in Pakistan’s big modern embassy/residence in Minato-ku. I loved the art in his spacious apartment and the great view of Tokyo. I was especially impressed with two mirrored, life-size statues of jaguars at the entrance. They were decorated with red lights for the holidays and were really beautiful. There were lots of interesting paintings everywhere and many wonderful photos of the ambassador with his family and friends over the course of his exciting career.
EUROPEAN UNION SPECIAL CONFERENCE AT ANA HOTEL
I had planned on going to the European Union’s first high-level conference in Japan on gender equality and the economic empowerment of women, but an interesting and paying opportunity to show some showbiz friends around Tokyo came up, so unfortunately I had to cancel going to the conference. But I heard that more than 300 people attended the conference and reception at the ANA Hotel. Congratulations to EU Ambassador Viorel Isticioaia-Budura, his staff, and those who worked so hard in making it the big success it was.
I‘m sure most of you have been to and shopped at National Azabu Supermarket in Hiroo. The store owner Banjiro Uemura, his company store manager Dale Toriumi, and the always helpful staff have gone all out to make National Azabu the place to shop for food and drink from all around the world. Keeping up with world trends, the store places a lot of emphasis on local and international foods that are often difficult to ﬁnd here, and with all of the choices, ifs hard not to walk out of the place with a full shopping bag.
*First published at the Tokyo Weekender
*Images Copyright: Tsukasa Shiga