Cycle 5 – Item 144
29 (Thu) May 2014
Mission to Japan: Expert Consultation on Intersectoral Action on Health + Personal Deviation (Day 2)
In Kobe. My first duty travel! Dispatched to the World Health Organization Centre for Health Development (aka “WHO Kobe Centre” aka “WKC”). Here to attend the Expert Consultation on Intersectoral Action on Health. For GMTD purposes, the trip is all about food. To maximize the opportunity, I’ll be staying in the country an extra couple days – a “personal deviation” in WHO parlance.
If this consultation were any indication, I look forward to making a strong impact on the work at WHO. One of the meeting’s primary objectives is to recommend revisions to the booklet “Intersectoral Action on Health: a path for policy-makers to implement effective and sustainable action on health,” which was developed to guide health sector engagement with other sectors concerning health issues. But the booklet is vague/confusing on how existing laws should be identified and harnessed to support/drive/mandate action. The word “law” (or any derivative/synonym thereof) wasn’t mentioned once throughout the entire morning session. Right after lunch, I raised my hand and pointed out the legal elephant in the room, after which many of the discussions addressed or at least recognized the implications of law. As such, I anticipate that the revised version will be much stronger from a legal perspective. Job well done (me).
For lunch, at the restaurant Hygeia on the ground floor of the WKC building, I had oyakodon – what a kick, trying one of my all-time favorite dishes at the source! – even if the food itself was kinda blah.
Kisoji is a Japanese restaurant chain. 8 locations in Osaka, Kobe, and Fukuoka. Specializes in shabu shabu, while offering a range of traditional dishes.
A popular venue for dinner parties hosted by WKC, because it’s close by, big enough to accommodate large groups, and offers multi-course set meals that include unlimited drinks.
The food was spectacularly unimpressive. I didn’t know what most of the items were, a lot of minced/mashed/jellied tidbits. Nothing stood out, either for good or bad. Whatever.
On the other hand, the unlimited booze was, well, you know me. Choices included draft or bottled beer, chilled or warm sake, plum wine, straight or cocktail shochu, straight or cocktail whisky. Rather than whisky, I went with the shochu, on the rocks, so as to appear less of an alcoholic.
(See also BOOZE)
(See also GLOBAL FOOD GLOSSARY)
(See also RESTAURANTS IN JAPAN)