Sunday, January 27, 2008
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
The kids traditionally dressed for some omochi pounding.
In between poudning they soak the mallets in water.
Then when it is done, they eat it. It may be wrapped in seaweed like sushi or rolled in something that looks like corn meal, but tastes more like peanutbutter. One had some kind of tiny rasin-looking beans and was a bit sweet tasting (Tara, I am sure it had NO sugar in it!!! so don' worry about me!!!)
It does not really look tastey, but it is pretty good. The kids really like it!!
Below is the professional demonstration...I keep waiting for that man on the side to get wacked with that big o' mallet...
This is the edge of Yoyogi Park, close to our house.
There is a Cemetary in the background
These pictures below were taken at "the cheep grocery store". I have to go to three or four different places to get all of the things on the list. But I will describe the process at OK discount grocery. I can actually park there. This is a novelty, but we like to go there for several reasons. One is that I can park there ~which when I am "stocking up" for our family of 6 is a nice thing. We also like to go ther because the prices are better than a lot of other places. As I pull up to the grocery store. There is usually a man standing there on the street. He very often is holding a sign. You see, there are only about 10 parking places at OK. If you don't have one, there are not many other places to park. I assume the sign says "full" or something like that?? But rememeber I am just guessing. It all looks like chicken scratch to me... If I really lucky, he me pull into the "lot" and wait, but even then there is only room for one car to wait. If it is full I have to do a few laps around the area in hopes that someone is finishing up at the ol' OK. If it is full and I am luck, my friend in uniform will direct me into the waiting spot. When someone leaves, another man in uniform working in the lot and not on the street will wave his arms and white gloved hands to usher me into my coveted parking spot. He will then push a button on the parking machine, walk over to me and with his white gloved hands very politey greet me with a slight bow (it sounds polite anyway) and wave his arms as if I were a queen of sheba and direct me to the entrance of the store. Once inside, I immediately go to the escalator downstairs. The only thing on the floor I have just walked onto is the four or five cash registers. So down I go to get myself a shopping cart. And you must not really think of the shopping carts at the super Walmart or at Publix, no no no!!! These carts have baskets that I first pick up and then put on the my cart. There are all kinds of things you will observe about this grocery experience. Above is our shopping cart. The baskets are picked up separately from the cart. So you could just carry the basket around like you do at Target when you do have alot of stuff to buy. The bottom "basket" is ours we brought from home. It collapses down and so is nice to use in the car or anywhere. We ar just making use of every spot on the tiny cart. NO ONE buys this much stuff...even at Costco they walk out with three or four items in their cart. We are quite a sight and turn many heads with our load. Especially as I take pictures as I am walking through the store...
Octopus and Squid---pretty average stuff, egh??
Can somebody tell me what aisle the Cheerios are on PLEASE?!!
I have not idea what this is or what most of the stuff is in the store ...
Below are pickled plums...wanna bite?
Above is a cooler of fish staring at the shoppers as they just lay there on the ice. I did not take any of them home...I guess we could have gotten a new pet??'
You know how the Japanese are big on handbags. Well I think they are so in to any kind of bag...they are just BAG people...NO they are package people. They are so garabage concious but you get packages inside of packages. Every thing is packaged....Apples each individually wrapped (see the price at the "cheep" grocery store about 186 yen per apple that is about $1.86 for one apple AT THE CHEEPEST store around!!??)
Below is another example...this is mayonaise. Two different kinds on the shelves. The bottle of mayonaise is then put in a package.
I just took a picture of my groceries on my kitchen counter so you could see EVERYTHING is in a package...asparagus, bellpeppers, green onions, bananas, cilantro, lettuce---everything
Wednesday, January 2, 2008
Here you are suppose to wash your hands and rinse your mouth. I think it has too do with making your self clean for the Gods??
SOOO many people
Here they buy these boards and write their wishes for the New Year and leave them for the Gods to make happen
If the get a 'bad' fortune, they will fold it properly and tie it on one of these lines...here are many fortunes that people do not want to come true...