On our way back to our hotel, Mr. Nagata had promised Brad that we would stop at a local pipe shop since he had hoped to purchase a traditional Japanese pipe, called a kisuru.
It was not particularly easy to find, even for Nobu, but eventually we stopped on a very narrow street right in front of the shop.
In Japan, you will often see curtain-like banners hanging in the doorways of many stores and restaurants. These banners typically signify that the establishment is open for business. Here is the banner for the pipe shop that I took from the seat of the car.
The door however was locked, but eventually the shopkeeper came to open it after some rather persistent knocking. Luckily Mr. Nagata was there to interpret for us because the shop owner was clearly a little befuddled by the Americans who had just wandered into his shop.
Eventually he brought out several trays of the traditional pipes and a deal was struck between the two of them, with a little help from Nobu and some universal hand guestures.
I believe that pipe smoking contributes to a somewhat calm and objective judgement in all human affairs. ~ Albert Einstein, 1950