After taking the local train from Fujieda to Shizuoka, Michiko and her friend Kana picked me up at the station. We headed to their friends' "mansion" (a Japanese apartment with more than two rooms) and the takoyaki party began.
Just in case any of you back home want to make your very own takoyaki (and I mean, really - who doesn't?), here's what you do:
1. Get yourself a nice slab of octopus.
2. Add some batter to your takoyaki pan.
3. Drop in some of that chopped octopus goodness.
4. And some squid if you're feeling daring.
5. Add some chopped onions and pickled ginger.
6. Get your friends to help you flip the balls so they cook evenly.
7. Keep flipping until...
8. ...they are a nice golden brown. Then you can add some okonomiyaki sauce, dried fish and dried seaweed.
And, actually, they weren't that bad. There was enough batter to kind of mask the fact that there was octopus even in them. I didn't throw up at the table, which is always a good sign. But will I go out and by a takoyaki pan so I can make some octopus balls at home? Probably not.
9. Smile with your new friends because you just survived your first takoyaki party!
And last night, they lit the Christmas lights near Fujieda Station, right in front of my school. I took a quick photo tonight on my way home: