Tuesday, April 25

Not much new to report on this ANZAC Day, long days at the office keep me from touring the countryside.  Just a few random shots and thoughts for today.  First, bangers and mash is as good for lunch here as it is in Australia.  Second, Wikipedia rocks.  Third, the milk tastes weird compared to what I'm used to.  Beyond it being whole milk (which turns out to be 3.7% for those keeping score), the several containers I've gotten taste more earthy, or grassy or something.  Maybe ours is just more heavily processed and this is what milk really tastes like, or maybe they feed the cows some super-grass here, but it takes some getting used to.  I've dropped down to non-fat milk to deal with it.  Also, the Frosted Flakes (Frosties) taste almost candy-like, moreso than usual.  Kind of like vanilla coated.  Not bad, just super-über-sweet.  Did you know Mozilla has a special "insert character" function with all the characters we're not used to?  ü ḭ ṝ ẋ ỷ to you too.

So, back to the milk.  If anyone can read this and if it has a good story to tell, let me know what it says:
Whole milk

The apartment has a very interesting combination washer/dryer.  It works and is probably very water-economical, but when it takes 2+ hours to wash a small load and 1+ hours to dry it I wonder if it's saving anything on electricity.  Anyway, it does it all in one unit, the ÖKO-Lavamat Turbo.  Made in Nürnberg.  (Heh, I get to use that function again.  Čöǭł!)

Went to the store again.  Bought some vittles.  I am both curious and scared to know what "Pocari Sweat" tastes like.  It's all over the place here, described as "Ion Supply Drink."  More info at the link.

Okay, I couldn't wait.  Pocari Sweat tastes kind of like diluted grapefruit juice, kind of like a slightly thicker flat Fresca.  Not bad, actually.  Plus, "with the appropriate density and electrolytes, close to that of human body fluid, it can be easily absorbe into the body."  Good to know.

And I have learned how to use a convection microwave oven.  I didn't know it was a convection oven at first until something kind of melted under the heat.  But I've figured it out now. 

A common "meal-in-a-bowl" that's cooked up daily at the supermarket next door.  Chicken, rice, a little lettuce and some pickled ginger.  418¥.  Beats McDonalds.  I hope to try the swiss restaurant up the street before I leave.

I also learned about the practice in Japan, Korea and China of using stamps instead of signatures.  In Japan they're called Hanko and more info can be found here and here.  It makes sense, since with the symbols pretty much being written the same from person to person, something needed to be invented to demonstrate approval.  They're used as legal signatures and government-registered ones must be used for transactions like banking and real estate. 

That's pretty much it for today.  Next time I'll tell you about the remote-controlled bathtub and play you a recording of "ID Bango".  Sayonara.