Crazy Nights, Driver’s High : Sushi Factory Meet n’ Run

 Have you heard the legend of the Japanese thunder?

It’s been said that during the first Saturday night of the month, thunder is heard along the Skyway. 

But there is not a cloud in the sky, no lightning is seen. 

And whatever little is seen quickly fades in the distance, dots of red blood like the eyes of the devil himself.

But this is not a cult, and there is no devil in sight.

This is the Sushi run!

No it doesn’t have anything to do with the edible kind, so what exactly is the Sushi run?

For car guys (myself included somehow), there are lots of events to attend during the weekends. Car shows are aplenty nowadays, and with summer just around the corner, one can easily find a date to spend with like minded folks. Sure, tambays here and there, people talking about mods, women and playing loud beats-y music…somehow it isn’t all my cup of tea. And that’s mostly for people who’re into “modelo” cars, and usually the more fashionable ones wear a fancy pair of sneakers, shoes or whatever they are.

For the old school car owner, there isn’t very much action until a sympathizing owner opened shop in Makati. This particular shop, Sushi Factory, caters specifically to old Japanese cars, and at any one time, a quick pass thru the place will show a car or two in different stages of work. Looking around through the place yields amazingly intricate works in progress, most are designed and built from scratch. No better testimony would be the shop’s darling, Natsuki the Celica.

An invite was sent by one of my acquaintances thru Facebook late last year about some kind of old school car meet, that also promised a bit of action afterwards. Knowing a bit of the man who sent it (he doesn’t do fancy footwear nor do house music – i think) I figured it must be one of those old fashioned meets where grown men (not boys) can gather together, and tak all night. The place wasn’t too far from my house, and no sooner than I arrived did I find many familiar faces. I was not handed a beer, but rather coffee and some blueberry filled bread. I love the place already! Alas, that first time I went there I didn’t join the run.

from the New Year’s run (01/04) – men, not boys with hormone issues, talking and casually hanging out
from the 02/01 meet. parking space is quickly becoming an issue as more guys drop in to join on the fun and action
from the 02/01 meet. guys crowd over a Celica stuffed with a monstrous engine
credits to : Jeiven Perez / Sushi Machine

Let me clarify though – while a lot of the cars present at any of the meets have some serious horsepower under  the hood (and looks to boot) the run is not a racing event. It is not a contest of you against everyone else. It’s just an old school convoy of classic Japanese cars making their way to Alabang…to continue the chitchat, and to serve as some sort of exercise so the old cars can stretch their legs. It is seriously refreshing – no one being an airhead, no one dissing this ride, and an amazing gentlemanly display of good driving manners on the road. No “bombahan”, no sudden cutting each other off…

from the New Year’s run (01/04)
credits to : Sushi Machine

So far, I gone on three or four runs to Alabang, which always ends up at Petron Westgate – mostly I don’t go due to budget constraints, or I’m just too sleepy. Every time I go though, is pure driving bliss – truly a driver’s high.

So if you own an old Japanese car (they say 20 years and older is preferred), and you want to find a refreshing hang out for some talk about all things with wheels, you just might want to drop in. It helps to have some fuel just in case you’d want to go – when everyone starts their engines, you’d find it hard to resist going along for the drive. Lately though, it isn’t just Japanese cars coming along – Euro cars are steadily increasing, and the last run even had motorbikes! The run is quickly becoming popular too – last month’s run had so many cars going to the shop, and the very good lot of them went to Alabang as well. Parking space is now becoming an issue, as the first few meets attracted maybe 20 to 40 cars…the last meet had at least 60 cars run on the Skyway with god-knows how many were actually at the shop prior. You might want to be there earlier in the evening to get some coffee and chat, because at midnight, we run the sky.

Check them out on Facebook : Sushi Machine

* photos shown here without credits are the ones i personally took
**photos credited as “Sushi Machine” were taken from the shop’s page. credits due to their respective photographers

[originally posted on]


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