Thursday, May 26, 2016

Ode to a Backpack

Since trying to drive in Japan near gives me a panic attack just to think about (I understand it’s an irrational level of anxiety, that knowledge doesn’t fix me) I instead  adopted a much more pedestrian lifestyle while we’ve been living in Nagoya.  Dare I say; I love it.   

I feel more active and healthy, hoofing around has made me more navigationally savvy, I see more cool stuff because I can let my eyes wander a bit instead of focusing on the road, and it makes everything I buy a VERY intentional purchase.  Because I’m walking.  And if I have to walk a mile or more back to our apartment, whatever I’m carrying better be something we actually have a use for.

ah yes, these tiny plastic 100¥ figures were all absolutely vital purchases

Since I’m physically carrying everything we need around this city (examples: groceries, clothing, dog food, laundry detergent, that one time I bought a bookshelf and carried it back home and pulled every muscle in my arms but felt so triumphant about it), I’ve ditched the idea of carrying a purse and have converted whole-heartedly to taking a backpack with me everywhere.

Backpacks on adult, non-student people are much more common here than I’d ever noted back home.  However, because it’s Japan, if you’re going to carry a backpack it needs to be fun and cute.  When we first arrived, my backpack was a takeaway gift we’d received from when the Kellogg Cereal company hosted a Navy Ball.
note how nice and fancy we look... 
five feet from a cardboard cut out of tony the tiger in fatigues.

Needless to say, it was not adorable, and I am a little ashamed to admit how quickly I became wildly self conscious about my totally not cute backpack.  And so I made an investment and purchased my beautiful blue starry backpack, roughly a year ago.

This blue starry backpack has proven to be the most perfect accessory in my life: It’s star pattern is cute, but not like, over the top for my American sensibilities.  It has side-zippers so I can reach behind me and rummage through the main pouch to grab stuff without needing to take it off (very handy on trains).  It’s got a padded back piece so that weirdly pointy thing I just bought won’t stab me in the back while I walk.  It has two side pouches that hold my phone and my house keys/rail pass respectively. It’s big enough to act as an overnight bag on weekend trips, even with the way I chronically overpack.  It displays my collection of pins from all the touristy places I’ve visited here (my solution for wanting souvenirs from cool places without accruing clutter) And I can fit $100.00 worth of groceries inside without the straps giving out while I walk or bike home.  It is  so choice.

And now after a year of dutiful service, it’s finally time to retire my trusty blue starry backpack.
Actually, maybe retirement has been due for a while now, but I couldn’t bring myself to make the decision.  I figured my blue starry backpack would tell me when it was time.  But it’s been looking a little rough for a while now - in fact, while my mum was here visiting she insisted on buying me a new bag even though I was adamant it was fine and the way the bottom seam was fraying was totally fine.  I am a creature of habit, you see, and I didn’t want to have to get used to a whole new system of zippers and pockets.  This blue starry backpack is perfect… how could I ever find anything that could replace this perfect bag!?

How do you carry all your stuff around with you?  
What do you look for in a new bag/ purse/ wallet? 
Tell me in the comments!

Long story short… I ended up getting the exact same model.

Thus, tonight I will be moving over my wallet, pocket umbrella and sketchbook.  My lip balm, tissues, and schedule book.  My sweat rag (if you live in Japan in the summer, you have one, don’t judge), hand sanitizer, and my pin collection.  And tomorrow will dawn a new era - the era of the black starry backpack.

today’s little language lesson
この かばん は、同じ ですね?
kono kaban wa, onagidesune?

isn’t that the same bag?

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Negotiating Parlay

For those who missed the memo, The Mister and I spent Golden Week in Cancun Mexico, to celebrate my little cousin tying the knot.  

I’ve finally smoothed over the jet lag, thanks in part to KP2 who read my last post and came over three hours later with TWO entire boxes of Kraft Mac N Cheese which she had found.
less than three.
Our time in Mexico was spent at an all inclusive resort.  Which is a cost-effective way to feel like you’re an opulent almighty ruler of everything you see.  (that also makes it a WAY magnified version of the Waiter Rule.  FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY: Tip your staff and be gracious and kind for the work they are doing to make your vacation lovely.  They are human beings and you need to at least pretend you have a shred of decency.)  

The other thing all-inclusives are real good for, however, is finding ways to make you feel like you need to break out of the “included” amenities and spend more money to do “excursions.”

I have long felt the only detractor from all-inclusives is the constant sales pitch to do extra stuff.  When you save to be able to take a trip that you understand has, you know, ALL things included, a sales person could literally say “this is two cents extra” and my natural inclination is to recoil in horror and say “WHAT ARE YOU DOING GO AWAY I HAVE ALREADY PAID FOR ALL THE THINGS I FEEL LIKE PAYING FOR.

Have you ever stayed at an all-inclusive?  
What’s your excursion stance? 
Tell me in the comments!

I make a point on the occasions when I’ve been lucky enough to stay at an all-inclusive to be real upfront about rejecting extra charges.  Upon check-in I immediately shut down the extra pitches:  would you like to upgrade your room? Nope.  Would you like to come to this breakfast where we try to get you to sign up for another vacation? Sashay Away*.  Would you like to hear about all the fun things that cost extra in exchange for a bunch of coupons that are more or less meaningless? NO!  And then I follow that up with pretending to be asleep anytime the sales people make their rounds at the pool.  

Two exceptions to this rule in my head:
  1.  While I am 100% the person who will spend my time at a resort just belly up to the swim up bar, I recognize that I have married my opposite, and as such, he gets real bored of that in like, a day.  The Mister is very good at finding stuff to do on the grounds - yoga, playing the games the activity director offers, checking out the night club.  But we’re on vacation, and he needs a few opportunities to let his freak flag fly.
  2. Remember that one time last week I talked about how HORRIBLY sunburnt I got?  Turns out the onsite spa offers a sunburn treatment… for an extra charge.  Which I signed up for without batting an eye.
Now the thing about any of these extra charges is that they are all 100% negotiable on price, IF you’re the type of person who is comfortable negotiating.  The Mister is a champion of negotiating price.  I… am not.  He sent me to look at if the spa had any sun burn treatments and I without thinking about it just agreed to the first price I was given.  The very next day The Mister was able to go to that same spa and negotiate for us to get a couple massage at literally 50% of their initial price.  How did he do that?  I don’t know, because the only part I was privy to was:

“Hey babe.  I’m gonna go see if I can get us signed up for a couples massage.  No no, stay here, I’m going to talk prices with them and you’re better just enjoying your mojito far away from that conversation.”

That’s not The Mister being mean, that’s The Mister being honest.  And I’m grateful for that skill set of his because… I mean, I got a massage, did you not read the above?

He also negotiated for the one off-site excursion we took:  A sunset dinner cruise.  Which is pirate themed.  Aka - The Galleons of Captain Hook.  

Real talk, we took a gamble thinking this might be a stupid kiddie thing.  And there *were* kids aboard… but holy cow did we have  great time!  It was like Medieval Times at sea! 

There were three ships that went out, and at the end of the night, they had a legitimate pirate fight between each ship over the “treasure.”  There were games, dances, between the two ship masts they had rigged a space for an aerial silks performance, cir de solei style right over our heads in the middle of the ocean.  Did I mention there was a pirate fight between other ships at the end?  Listen, it was silly.  You should probably recognize that when you  sign up for a pirate dinner show.  But if you can be silly, I can’t recommend that trip enough.  
Donning the children's pirate kit he purchased.  Silly is The Mister's middle name.

It was our last night in Cancun and I’m so glad we chose that to wrap up our trip.  Now I’m back in Japan* and ready to get back into the groove.  


Are you in the Nagoya/ Chubu area?  The Chubu Walkathon is this weekend, and I hope to see you there!  The Walkathon is a charity event put together largely by the expat community of the area, and as this is the 25th year of the Walkathon, they’re going bigger and better than ever. 

This year also includes… are you ready?  COOKIES.

I’m in the middle of making a few hundred limited edition Walkie the Walrus character cookies that will be for sale (¥200, non-negotiable price.  Proceeds to the Walkathon charity) at the event.  I’m SO excited to have my little budding bakery featured in this way and I’m doubly excited for the effort of all this baking go to such a great cause.  Come say hi at the Walkathon on Sunday.  Buy a Walkie Cookie. Help a good cause and get a delicious treat.  I’ll see you there.

today’s little language lesson
Cuando hubiste hablado español para dos semanas, su mente esta muy confundido a empezar a hablar Japonese una vez mas.

When you've spoken Spanish for two weeks, your mind is too confused to begin speaking Japanese again.

*There are few things I make such a point to keep up with from the Western Hemisphere as knowing what's going on in RuPaul's Drag Race.  If you have a fave queen you should tell me about it because I would talk about this for eons.  Me?  #PurseFirst.  (and where do I buy Bob's first dress form the evening.  I want it.)

Monday, May 09, 2016

Learn from My Mistakes.

I’m pretty sure I am at a point where I would happily commit a heinous crime in exchange for one of those beautiful blue boxes of kraft mac n cheese in dino shapes.

Jet-Lag:  How does it manifest in your body?  
Tell me in the comments!

I seem to have a body that likes to deal with Jet-Lag on a roll of a dice:  sometimes I do REALLY well!  We landed in Cancun and were fine* within a day or so.

*with regard to timezones anyway.  just wait, we’ll get there.

And other times (aka 5 out of 6 times), my whole body just goes on strike.  Headaches, stomachaches, an acne breakout rivaling a 13 year old, a stupefying level of apathy to everything, and of course, inability to sleep at the proper time of day.  This is compounded by my absolute inability to fly in a plane well, so that’s all coming at you directly after I spent 12 straight hours on a plane back to Japan curled in a ball trying not to hork and occasionally weeping in my pleas to my husband to please not let the flight attendants put food anywhere near me because the smell would 100% certainly make me vomit.

taken moments after clearing Japanese customs.
Please note how unaffected The Mister is next to my miserable hot-mess of a person-hood.

Not sharing all that for pity, but as an explanation for my insatiable need to cure the Blue Box Blues.  Do they sell Mac N Cheese in regular grocery stores in Japan?  Not that I’ve found in the last two days of wandering to the markets within my walking radius.  I am hoping the craving and jet lag passes before I loose my mind and hitch hike out to the insanity that is Nagoya's Costco.  (on that note, if you know me IRL, please do not mail me mac n cheese.  I am well aware this is a passing thing, and will almost certainly be gone before a package would arrive.  But thank you for keeping me in your thoughts.)

Moving on from macaroni; I’m back from Mexico and had a GREAT time!  My little cousin got married in a beautiful ceremony, the reception was a blast, and I got to catch up with my family in a setting where no one had other stuff to run off and worry about.  Plus, The Mister and I had some quality time to actually SEE each other without work obligations getting in our way.  It was much needed.

This contrasts sharply with Japanese beauty standards, which place high value on pale skin.  In the summers, it’s not uncommon for me to be walking down the sidewalk sweating through my tank-top and shorts, as I pass by women wearing wide brimmed hats, long pants, parasols, and elbow-length gloves.

which probably explains that the sunscreen I was able to find in Japan before our trip was only SPF 15...
if everything is covered why would you need sunscreen too?  Who am I kidding this was not the sunscreen's fault.
In summary, I’m saying is that people here do not go tanning.  There are a few outsider trends that buck that blanket statement, like Ganguro girls, but by and large, tanning isn’t well-accepted by the public.  And so, before going to Cancun, I did no pre-tan.

Sure, there are people out there who are capable of going on vacation in Cancun without having tanned beforehand, and who manage to not burn.  I… have proven to not be one of those people.

Simply put, I didn’t add up the math - if I didn’t do any tanning before the trip, as I had done before every other trip I’ve taken to Cancun, then I should not use the same sun-screen mentality I’d used on those previous trips.  

You see where this is going.  
I burned.
I burned real bad.  
On day 1.
as this picture was taken I was slowly turning a vibrant crimson.

Did you know if you give yourself bad enough sunburn that you get dizzy when you walk?  You can’t eat?  That aloe isn’t soothing but instead feels like you have doused yourself in lemon juice and salt?  I didn’t go back outside to enjoy our all-inclusive beach resort for two days.   I was a mess, and I deserved it for my own idiocy.

not a good look.

LEARN FROM MY MISTAKES. Use so much more sunscreen than you think you need.  Get a higher number than you can count to.  Apply so much more often than you think you do.  Ugh, you know this.  You actually listened to Baz Lurhman.  

I can share, though, that if you’re going to a wedding ceremony and your sunburn has started to peel, you can put some coconut oil over the peely bits to make yourself not look like a shedding snake long enough for pictures to be taken.  So that was good.

we cleaned up well, if not for being a bit pink. :)

I’m just about done peeling / fading from red to gold, and hopefully just about done having visions of making out with Cheesasaurus Rex.  Now I just need to switch my head back from speaking Spanish into speaking Japanese again.  Wish me luck!

today’s little language lesson:

me gustaría a matar un hombre para macaroni y queso de dinosaurios.
I would kill a man for macaroni & cheese dinosaurs.

tune in next time when I wrap up the Mexico trip by talking about bird pirates, actual (sort of) pirates, and why I’m not allowed anywhere near The Mister when negotiations are happening.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

The End of My Political Aspirations

Okay some quick housekeeping first and foremost.

-The Earthquakes in the Kumamoto area of Japan have not affected us in Nagoya.  For that I am thankful.  We are safe and sound.  And I am so incredibly grateful for the family and friends who have checked in with us to make sure we're okay.  But there are many who are not okay, and relief efforts are being hindered by the destruction of roads and railways in and out of the area, as well as more and more fierce storms battering the shorelines.  If you are so inclined, this article is a great guideline for where and how you can help:

-The Mister and I are taking off at the end of the week for two very great reasons: a very needed vacation, and to celebrate my very wonderful little cousin get hitched, all from a resort in CANCUN.  So there shall be no blog posts the next few weeks while I tan myself to a crisp at a swim-up bar.  You understand.

Okay.  Got all that?  Great.  Let’s talk about the Penis Parade.
Maybe I should have added a disclaimer:  hey family, I really did go to a penis festival, so, you know, read at your own risk.

Spring sees a myriad of fertility festivals throughout Japan, and almost all of them center around the most easily recognizable visual representation of fertility.  I’m talking about d*cks here people.  Keep up.

Obviously, this is a festival which participants hope brings luck for new babies to be made.  It celebrates babies that are already on the way.  And in a less obvious way, is also about the vitality of the crops for the year.

About a month back, I went with a few people (who will retain their anonymity for their own possible political aspirations…but you could probably guess) to the penis festival in Komaki, which is both the closest fertility festival to us here in Nagoya, and also one of the more well-known festivals in Japan.  So that worked out well.  I’m happy to report we let ourselves get a little campy with it, which seemed in the spirit of the day.

Oh yes folks, I ate a corndog shaped like a penis.
I ate a chocolate covered banana with a marshmallow at the tip sculpted to make it look like a penis.
And I ate a sucker which was… you guessed it, shaped like a penis.  The number of SUPER amused Japanese folks who took pictures of us while we ate our penis suckers was out of this world.  And the more brazen ones actually asked us “do you know what you’re eating?
Nope, no.  We don’t have d*cks in America.

We waited in line to see the giant wooden penis in the shrine.  We waited in line to see the giant metal testicles… until we realized that women were touching the balls to be blessed with babies and then promptly exited said line.  We drank sake. We *almost* purchased little penis statues.  We watched the amazing parade that featured a giant wooden penis that was spun around like a hit record every so often along the route.  

Don’t believe me?  HA.  Hahahahahaha. hitplayidareyou. (NSFW)

I had a blast.  And, somewhere in Spain, I was broadcast on an English-speaking TV channel being interviewed about the festival while mowing down on that aforementioned penis-nana.  Japan, I hope you feel I represented your festival well.

from L to R: TV camera man.  Nana-weiner vending booth.  Fellow foreigner blurred for their protection. Definitely not me holding a penis-nana. And the reporter. This really happened.

What’s the most interesting celebration you’ve attended?  
Tell me about it in the comments!

today’s little language lesson
tabeteiru mono o shiteimasu ka?

do you KNOW what you’re eating?

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

I Have SEEN Some Stuff.

Guys, sometimes as a foreigner it can be weird to live here.  There’s a lot to get used to, and sometimes it’s just a little too much for my brain to handle.

On bad days, the things I see lead to me grumpily rage-writing about [for example] how frustrated I am that Japan seems to lack any sort of socially agreed upon rules for pedestrians when they’re pedestrian-ing around on the sidewalks. [and later deleting because that’s no fun to read as a blog post]

The point of THIS post is how on the good days, fellow foreigner friends are vital in instances of Japan being… well, Japan being Japan.  
  • When I see a three year old wearing a bright pink shirt that says “PERFECT B*TCH” while running around the playground (and you know it’s not that the parents are cheeky and got her the shirt as a joke, as much as they maybe just don’t understand the strength of the lingo).  

  • …Or even when the guy next to me on the train at 1:30 in the afternoon on a random Monday is drinking a beer and watching a porn with no volume on his ancient, pixelated flip phone screen.

If you’ve grown up living in Japan, these are the sorts of things that are not notable, as they are just normal occurrences (please note, I am not saying that Japanese people would be cool with a creeper watching nudie flix on the train, but it’s common enough that they’re not likely to do anything about it either).  So a foreigner being worked up about things falls largely on deaf ears.  For me, that has a great side effect of making me feel like I’m insane to have taken such note of things that Japanese people normalize.

Thus, there are times when I am intensely thankful for friends I can turn to and say “Dudes. Japan. What?” And they respond with “I know, that’s a bit weird, right?”  

All of those above examples are real life.  And each of my foreign friends have similarly weird-to-us examples.  The creeper on the train with the flip-phone porno?  That happened on my way to class just this week.  And it lead to me and KP2 coming up with a new game.  It seemed like a healthier reaction than just getting upset about something I cannot change.  Do you live in Japan?  Do you want to play?  Here are the rules.

In this gameshow, players must figure out which items in the room are real,
and which are made of chocolate... using only their mouths.

"Japan. What." Rules: (2-infinity players)
1.  Player 1 sees something out of "their ordinary."
2.  Player 1 texts all other players with their basic location and an “1 adjective + 1 noun” structure message followed by “Japan. What.  Go.
  • ex.  “on a train.” “old man.” “Japan. What. Go.”
  •  “at the park.” “child’s shirt.” “Japan. What. Go.”

3.  Players 2 - infinity respond to the text with guesses of what Player 1 could have seen.
4.  Once all players have entered guesses, Player 1 reports the actual sighting, and becomes the judge for the round.  The best guess which is deemed “more strange" than the actual sighting, is awarded a point.  If a guess is somehow accurate, guesser is awarded 5 points.  If the other players agree that the actual sighting is “more strange” than the guesses, Player 1 gets a point.
5.  Repeat ad nauseam.

Want to play with me?  
Start your own round in the comments!

Japanese friends, you could play this in a flipped version, FOR SURE.  For example, my Japanese lesson this week included a discussion on how confusing the concept of bulk-buying at a Costco is.  “How do you eat all that food?”  “How many people do you have to bring along to hold everything?”  “You go by YOURSELF?!  HOW?!”  “The cart is HOW big!?  It's not a cart?  It's a FLAT BED on Wheels?! That’s ridiculous!

yes. need all of this RIGHT now.
…Yes, I agree, Japanese Teacher.  Costco is insanity.  But it’s also the only place around here that I can get Mac-sized dog treats.  So there’s that.

today’s little language lesson.

Kosutoko wa kuruoshii desu.
Costco is insane.

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Apparently This is My Annual Earthquake Post.

Hey I got one more year here Japan, let’s not make this actually annual.  I am not a fan.

[note: i’ve had a few gigs lately that require close detail pencil drawings - I needed a break for some looser sketching, so today’s illustrations are provided via the tiny white-board I procured at the local Daiso.  Enjoy.]

You may remember about a year ago, there was an Earthquake which I felt.  It was a decent size at 5.6, but the Epicenter was hundreds of miles away, so the only reason I felt it at all was because we live on the 11th floor of the building.  So up high, we get to swaying a little more than your average apartment.

Now, I had done a bunch of research about what one should do when an earthquake happens back then, but it was still not real solid information in my head, and I was so confused as to what was happening, and I barely felt it, so…
I didn’t really do anything but yell and panic in the middle of my living room.

I am… happy to say I was better this time? I guess?

So Japan, or at least Nagoya, has an alert system for people, should they be able to predict an earthquake with any advance notice.  Previously, I had understood this warning would come in the form of speaker cars, which I... was less than pleased with.  1.5 years here has more than taught my hearing to completely ignore the annoyance of the speaker cars who are generally spewing advertisements about sales at the local home good store at absurd decibels at all hours of the day.  I knew a speaker car wouldn’t get my attention for sh*t.

You know what DOES get my attention?

Japan has a new program (enacted last August) which allows them to hack into every phone and wi-fi enabled device in the area to make said devices scream “EARTHQUAKE IS COMING!” at their highest volume level.  THAT gets me to jump to action faster than when Bubba starts to make that “I’m about to vomit” *URK* noise.

related note: this is a real gravy boat you can buy
which mimics a barfing cat and I legit sort of want it.

Now of course, this alert was in Japanese, and as I do not use the word for Earthquake in my daily conversation, it is not a word I knew.  No friends, I did not know the word for Earthquake in Japanese - but when your phone starts screaming "JISHIN! JISHIN!" at you with "Emergency Alert" flashing across the screen, let me tell you there is a lot you learn immediately from panicked context.

I had time to grab a very fluffy Bubba and a very whiney Mac and we all sat in the doorway of the toilet room. 

And then our entire home spent about a minute rocking a good foot back and forth in the air while the earth beneath us made it’s best impression of a toddler flinging their body to the ground in protest of their galactic mom not buying an ice cream cone in a 6.1 Earthquake.

Mac whined and Bubba caterwauled, serenading whatever higher beings were clearly coming to collect our souls.  I am very thankful to say I had The Mister texting me to ask if I was alright and talking me through the whole thing (he was on the ground floor of his building and thus felt nothing but still heard the warning).  Still, as you may have gathered from any number of previous posts about small crisises in the life of KpMcD, I wasn’t like, SUPER calm, so much as just frozen in terror.

It only lasted about a minute… but when your whole house is moving of it’s own accord around you, let me tell you a minute is more than enough.  And as everything settled back down and I was able to walk around and take stock of the damage (two entire potted plants fell over on the balcony), I found myself torn between nervous sobbing and hysterically laughing at what can only be described as my continued invincibility.

Mac had no idea how to console me, and so I consoled myself y walking to the park for a Turkish Kebab.

Have you survived a natural disaster?  
Tell me what YOU’RE invincible to in the comments!

today’s tiny language lesson:


Wednesday, March 30, 2016

This is Not a Drill - Hanami is Upon Us.

Last week Mac and I walked to the park and we were met at the entrance by a row of food trucks and a man juggling swords while balanced upon a unicycle.

I turned to Mac for my best Rafiki impression:  IT IS TIME.

Hanami season is upon us!  For the un-indoctrinated, Hanami/ 花見  means "flower viewing,” and it is one of the most popular celebrations in Japan.  Hanami celebrates the blossoming of the cherry trees (sakura/ 桜) throughout Japan, and it is celebrated by simply taking a tarp out into the park, finding a spot under a cherry tree in bloom, then settling in to enjoy the out-of-doors while drinking.  

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, immediately following Valentine’s Day, stores everywhere dedicate whole sections of their shop to everything pink and flowered.  Starbucks has a Sakura Frappuchino (though they only run the special through the 15th of March, which is before any of the trees start blooming and I fail to see the point in that…#marketingFAIL), KitKat puts out a Sakura KitKat for the month, and Mac?  Well, Mac gets a new bandana.*  So were were ready for the celebration, is what I’m saying here.

Real Men/ Dogs wear pink.

The bigger parks in the area which have cherry trees also set up the park during these times like a festival site; lots of food trucks, and beer tents, and random entertainment (see above re: juggler on a unicycle because I was 100% not making that up)

Last year, we didn’t get much of a chance to celebrate Hanami, and I didn’t talk about it on the blog much, because we were still trying to get our house fixed and unpacked and moved back into it from Okazaki.  So I’ve been really soaking up the sunshine this past week over in the park. 

Who am I kidding: forget sunshine, I’m soaking up the kebabs.

The Mister and I have a deep love for Turkish Kebabs.  Judging by the number of Turkish Kebab shops in the area, we’re not alone.  But during the Hanami celebration, there is a Turkish Kebab truck right in the park.  It’s as close to delivery Turkish Kebabs that we could get.  And the Turkish man who owns that Kebab truck, adores Mac.  So the first time we did a lap through the food truck court to figure out a snack, he waved us over and promptly threw Mac some chicken.  

It was pretty much over for us after that.  What I’m saying here is that we have had Kebabs at least once every day this past week, and there always seems to be  a little container of meat that the kebab man had saved for Mac on those occasions.  I’m pretty confident at this point that I could close my eyes once I got to the park and Mac would just drag me straight to the Turkish Kebab Truck.  I supposed there are certainly worse things my dog could be taught.

What’s your favorite food-truck dish?  
Tell me in the comments!

Sort of related note:  I’ll be getting to a few more Hanami gatherings in the next couple of weeks bringing FREE SAMPLES of KitchenQuePasa Hanami Cookies with me - so if you see me out and about, don’t hesitate to flag me down.  Specifically, I'll be at the Nagoya Adventure Club's Hanami Party this Saturday with Pink Grapefruit Meltaways and Mint-Chocolate Wafers

Speaking of, I’ve got some cookies to bake, aaaaaand then it’s probably time for a kebab.

today’s little language lesson
すみません、二つ ロール ケバブ 辛くない お願いします。
sumimasen, futatsu ro-ru ke-ba-b, karakunai onegaishimasu.
excuse me, two kebab rolls, not spicy please.


*Mac almost always wears a bandana when we’re out in Nagoya, because I have found that people interpret dressing you dog up as a sign that your dog is not vicious and terrifying.  So… bandana.