that stands alone in the middle of perhaps the only parking lot in Japan. It has its own gas station too. Gloves and hats there were “on sale.” The Daiei Hawks had won their baseball game of the week and that means “sale.” We dropped of the film, saw the fantastic sale prices and, having an hour to kill with no realistic prices in sight drove to Kotobuki. It's in the metropolis division of our pueblo and usually has prices to match to fast-paced city life that someone heard about in an American movie... I think they get their pricing from those GQ Magazine fashion shots. “Men’s V-Neck Sweater by Rousseau Toilet (pronounced Toilee) Bernoi, $345US.” Actually, by some fluke, their prices were cheaper in the winter wonderland department. We brought two pairs of Timberland Thinsolate gloves for only 1000 a piece. That's about 10 bucks US... Great, 9 dollars cheaper than the Sears across town. We looked at hats. 11 bucks more. We went back to Daiei for the hats. Same exact brand, color and size, 11 bones cheaper...
Someone in this town needs a professional shopper.
It's the same with everything. Gas is around 3-6 dollars per gallon depending on what side of the street you buy on. Cheese? 2 dollars or 6 depending on what day it is. Gloves-- 10 or 19. Hats-- 15 or 26. Milk-- 1 or 7...yes seven... You gotta know how to work this town. To do a complete set of bargain shopping one would have to visit four or five stores in the right order to end up at home four or five hours later. The ladies can't have jobs because the need a Jenson backpack, ankle supporting boots, a walking stick and trail mix to go grocery shopping.
Alas the Christmas feel is in town. There are lights up, dancing Santas, bad re-makes and old classics spewing from the any speaker that can get electrical power. Miyakonojo has a group policy or practice or tradition or something about street music. The main street's speakers, Yakuba (city hall) owned and operated, are all piped the same songs and all the stores are playing (one the ground level) the same song. You can walk from inside to out without missing a beat in Fuji Wakamoto-san doing Jingu Bawooz (Jingle Bells). It's very pleasant, although it may not sound like it. Also since we got our CDs this morning I was able to put in Harry Connick Jr.'s Christmas CD. KFC also is selling one - a real crowd pleaser. I'm sure it's the same one that they offer back in the states. Only in the states people aren’t lining up for a half-hour to buy a micro-chicken sandwich and cornball Christmas CD. Even the Japanese public knows “Rudolph” sounds better creaking from Burle Ives than from Wannabe-san singing “Woodofu za wed nozu waine deeru…”
I'm outta here. Brandie decided dinner would be Oreo’s and a side of chili. Although I'm not sure I've completely sold her on the SIDE of chili part. No one messes with my main-course-Oreo plan.