Friday, September 25, 2020

city office

Yesterday I had to go to get some documents from our city office for Satoshi.

I don't go to this office too often, so I was surprised at some of the things they are doing to prevent virus contamination.

Like this cup of pens that had been sanitized.

To the left was a cup with red tape on it for pens that were used and needed to be sanitized (no photo).

In the elevator, they note where you can stand.

At least now there is a reason why you can't be packed like sardines in elevators and trains.

Changing the subject, it still surprises me how many people do not look down on the floors for these markers as to where to stand in stores.

Several times in a store I've turned around hoping that the person who is right behind me will get the hint that they should be "distancing".

At least most everyone here wears a mask.

It is still on a request basis but if you do choose not to wear one, the "mask police" will tell you so, be prepared to be yelled at by these people...

The temps have dropped quite a bit here, I need to look for my warm clothing...

Hope everyone is keeping zen, have a safe weekend everyone.

Thursday, September 24, 2020

physical during pandemic

Yesterday I went for my physical.

It's been 2 years since the last one and of course, this time around with the pandemic, things were done were a bit different.

For one thing, the amount of people getting tested was lessened.

Your temperature is taken before entering the waiting area, you must sanitize your hands with a spritz of antibacterial spray and masks must be worn at all times.

I don't know if I told you, but before starting the physicals, everyone changes into the same sweat-like clothing so that they can do the tests without having to wait for you to undress.

After a test is performed the area that the patient touched as well as the medical staff touched is wiped down with alcohol.

Even when doing the mammogram and when doing the barium test, we had to wear masks.

The only time I took my mask off was to drink the barium.

I get back my results in a couple of weeks, hopefully everything will be okay.

Afterwards, I went across the street to check out the Tokyo Gransta area. 

They also opened up a new area called Tokyo Gift Palette.

I wanted to try these Soles Gaufrette which is a brand started by BAKE

Chewy buttery waffles filled with butter cream with bits of granulated sugar that gives a little "crunch" and a rich vanilla jam.

While this was tasty, I didn't care for the chewy texture but I'm glad we tried them.

I also went to Daimaru Department Store which is right across from the Tokyo Gift Palette.

They check your temperature (with a computer screen that takes your temperature as you walk in) and make sure you spritz your hands with antibacterial spray before entering (there is actually someone standing there to make sure you do) and masks must be worn.

Also, the direction of traffic inside the store was one-way.

I stopped into Papabubble and picked up these salted caramels and chocolate filled mints for us too.

So much more to explore but I'll do so after this pandemic settles down.

A few days ago we had a typhoon approaching (#12 named Dolphin), which started off coming for a direct hit but now looks like it will just "brush" Tokyo and leave us with lots of rain and hopefully not too much krazy wind.

Take care everyone!

Wednesday, September 23, 2020


Proof that the other person in this house throws out the silverware...

and you know I have to take a photo because "that person" refuses to believe he is throwing it out...

And then the other day when his butt kept dialing my phone 3 or more times in a matter of seconds...

Not too bad if I was the only one he was bothering, but his butt apparently has called others too...sigh.

Hope you are having a nice week.

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

chichibusan ruby

Came across this variety of grapes called Chichibusan Ruby.

Apparently they are hard to grow.

I was a little disappointed because the fruit is oblong, but wasn't "crisp" like the Pizzutello Bianco variety.

The fruit was sweet but not really sweet like the Pizzutello Bianco.

Maybe I bought an old batch or maybe it isn't fully ripe?

Still, I'm glad we got to try this variety.

It's the first day of Autumn and a holiday here.

Satoshi has to work so it is just another day for us.

Monday, September 21, 2020

zappaisuikan souji

Yesterday (Sunday) was the day that our apartment building's pipes got cleaned and we had to be home between 13:00 and 15:00.

This procedure is called zappaisuikan souji in Japanese (zappaisuikan are the pipes and souji means to clean)

Apparently if your building is 30+ years old, the pipes should be cleaned to prevent back-ups.

The cleaners started from the bottom floors and worked their way up to the top floors.

Before they clean, certain areas should be cleared...

The area where the washer's drain is.

Under the bathroom sink.
Under the kitchen sink.

As well as the bath/shower area (no photo).

So in the morning, I moved everything just in case they needed to open things up.
I didn't actually see what the guy was doing but think that he "flooded" the drain and checked to see how it "drained".

The internet showed that if it was a slow drain they would use a high powered waterstream to "flush" out the calcified areas.

Luckily our apartment only took 5 minutes and they didn't have to open any of the drains.
Amazed that this little generator did all the work for our building.

It was our first time to experience this so I was surprised that our building management did projects like this.

In a couple of weeks the building management will change all the fire alarms in the apartments.

I was also surprised that the building management kept track of who already did this because Satoshi got our apartment's alarms changed last year while I was in Hawaii (this was one of our facetime calls, I had to tell him that the fire alarm was telling him the battery needed to be changed), so we don't have to be at home on this particular day...whoo! (not that we have been going anywhere though...)

We have one more day of this Silver Week holiday but Satoshi needs to go to work, so it will be a regular day for us.

Hope you have a safe week!

Friday, September 18, 2020

this and that

You may have heard that we have a new Prime Minister, Yoshihide Suga, he was actually the Chief Cabinet Secretary in the previous administration.

He is the 99th Prime Minister of Japan and the 10th one to hold office since I moved to Japan in 2001.

Hopefully he and his cabinet will be able to carry out their duties until the next election next September.

I reconnected with this baked/roasting recipe using furikake for a batch and everything but the bagel seasoning for another batch.

I like both flavors and am sure I will be roasting more veggies in the coming weeks.

I used my last packet of Noh's char siu marinade and made some boneless pork and chicken.

We had the chicken for two meals in salad and with veggies.

After slicing the pork, I put it into the freezer.

I want to make baked manapua with some of the pork and hope to make some before the temperature gets cooler.

Poor Satoshi he's been coming home so late (midnight) that I only give him some soy milk so he can go to sleep soon after bathing.

Since I go to bed later too, after I make the foods for Satoshi's bento, I take a 30 minute nap while I wait for the foods to cool.

After the 30 minutes, I pack his bento then start making breakfast...

While I eat breakfast, Satoshi eats "dinner".

Can you believe one day he texted me at about 17:00 (just as I was getting ready to make dinner) to tell me he was just about to eat lunch!

I used to make 1 big musubi for him to eat with his lunch, but now make two smaller ones so he can eat one with his lunch and one later in the afternoon.

The sunrises have been beautiful when we do get them, most other days have been rainy or cloudy.

Even on the rainy or cloudy days, it has been super humid...blah!

Tokyo's numbers this week were as low as 80 and as high as 276 with numbers significantly rising in the suburban areas, which means our area...gah!

Technically it is the start of a 4-day weekend but we aren't planning to go anywhere, hopefully Satoshi will be able to get some days off too.

Hope you have a safe weekend.

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

supermarket finds

Some items we recently stumbled upon at the market...

Follow Dressing...onion, garlic, this creamy dressing is delicious on salad but also nice with pork.

Hoshi imo (dried sweet potato).

This particular brand uses Tokushima grown sweet potato.

It is more semi-dried than fully dried and super sweet.

Another brand of hoshi imo uses Ibaraki grown sweet potato.

This brand has a little more "pull" with a slight sweetness.

JIF! most shops in Japan bring in Skippy.

Growing up my mom almost always had JIF.

When I saw this at the market, I had to get some.

Belgian butter waffles...these remind me of pizzelles.
Calcium furikake...they grind up dried fish and add sesame seed, seaweed and other ingredients.

Don't sneeze when eating this, your furikake will "fly" me

Pizzutello back!

So good!

What have you been enjoying lately?