Madison Covington: BAZAAR Café

At first, due to my lacking social skills, 「気にしない 」demeanor, and the ‘already a minority but especially a minority here’ situation, I was not looking forward to interacting with native Japanese people one-on-one without a sensei nearby translating my awkward hand gestures.

However, after I started volunteering for the BAZAAR Café, these worries though still subtly present were compromised with immense kindness, patience, open-mindedness, and 無料の美味い料理. As said at a meeting by regular a volunteer of the café, BAZAAR is “a home away from home.” A place for minorities, LGBTQ, 外国人, and those who are unable to find a community to settle and communicate with others who share their interests. All in all, a haven for any and everyone, a basho for open expression, free of judgment or the beloved ‘unasked for’ commentary. Not only that, but everyone there loves to eat. Every dish is prepared and put out with great care. If someone were given the opportunity to look inside the kitchen, they would truly understand that “yes, there is a certain way a grapefruit must be cut.” and “No, it is not just cutting it in minuscule slices and hoping for the best.”  No dish faces discrimination. From the Philippines to Thailand, most all recipes have a bit of home present within them due to the diverse backgrounds of the people who made them.

Though I’ve unnecessarily talked a lot about food, there are a couple of other things I have learned from my time here. One, I look somewhat descent in a green bandanna; Two, the entrance is in the BACK, accidentally entering the actual household will only result in feelings of embarrassment and force a child to escort you to the doorway; and, three, kindness can transcend any language barrier.

Though this experience was short, it left a lifetime impression and a story to tell for when I return. Advice to anyone looking for a place: if you want cool people, a cool atmosphere, and hot coffee, I encourage you to drop by.

3 thoughts on “Madison Covington: BAZAAR Café

  1. I am glad you were able to find a place that was both welcoming and able to aid you in learning the language. It seems like it really was a good fit for you. It also seems to work well with the more relaxed vibe you give of in class. Wish I had been able to check the place out.

  2. Hey Madison,

    I’m glad you’re enjoying your experience with Bazaar Cafe! I have also found it to be a wonderfully open and welcoming place, and I agree that people’s relationship with food is delicious 🙂