When I was a very little lad, three going on four, my father, who was in the Air Force at the time, received orders transferring him to Tachikawa Air Base, located about 32 km (17 mi) west of downtown Tokyo (now a civil airfield). Since Dad would be stationed in the Far East for three years (half in Japan and half at Clark AFB, which was on the big Philippine island of Luzon near Angeles City), he was given permission to bring his family with him.
Because I was so young, my impressions of Japan are mere flickers of half-seen images: a country full of bright colors. A fish flag waving in the breeze in front of a farm house as we drive past, and my father saying, "That means the mother just gave birth to a son." Sitting in the living room at the house of our maid/babysitter, whom we called "Mama-san", watching kabuki on the television set. (I'm told I could speak the language, but couldn't translate it.) Standing in the middle of the cul-de-sac where our house was, listening to the base speakers broadcast Kimi ga yo, and then "The Star-Spangled Banner", at sunset. Sitting in the living room as Dad takes pictures of all of us in traditional Japanese clothes ... even my little brother, who was born over there.
It's not to stretch a simile too far to say that donburi restaurants in Japan are like our Denny's and Cracker Barrels, in that donburi is a "comfort food": you grow up eating it, so that's what you crave when you want to reconnect with yourself, or when you don't want/can't afford something fancy. A donburi consists of meat and/or vegetable simmered in a fish stock-based liquid and served over rice. There are many variants; katsudon is one of the most popular. According to Eunice Kwon at MamaLoli.com, Katsu means "to win"; many athletes will eat a bowl before a big game, and many students will have one before an important test.