Wednesday, 8 July 2009

4 days in Tokyo

I've now been living in Tokyo for the grand total of 4 days, hurra!

OK, OK, that's not a lot, but still, Bibu and I have been up to a spot or two of shopping for house items and some more adventurous stuff.

Shopping wise, I've done some food shopping and that is for the moment a bit of an adventure. Sure, you can find pretty much all the typical foodstuffs for Western cooking. Known vegetables and cooking oil, even bought some parmesan. The trick lies in understanding a minimum of Japanese and Chinese characters to decipher the labels of the local stuff. There are easily 30 different kinds of sauces in each supermarket I've found. For example, I want to buy some miso paste for making miso soup, but didn't know where to start.

Another thing I've noticed is the price difference between the shops. The closest supermarket to our house is the well-known National Azabu. It stocks all sorts of imported food, from cereals to camembert "President". Prices are completely over the top, something like 8 EUR for a pack of butter (whatevah). On the other side of the spectrum is the "Lawson 100" which sells most of its goods for 100 Yen (about 1 EUR) The quality is very good but to buy in this one you need to understand a bit the language to read the labels, otherwise shopping turns into a "wheel of fortune" experience: "will this taste as soya sauce or super spicy oyster sauce?"
Somewhere in between is the "Daimaru Peackock" near Roppongi Hills, which has a lot of variety and decent prices. For the moment I've bought standard Western stuff, mostly meat, chicken, vegetables and fruit and I am playing it safe.

Talking about fruits, for some reason peaches are a bit of a luxury here. In some places they charge about 1,000 Yen (about 10 EUR) for 4! They look nice and juicy and all, but it seems a bit excessive. Mr M managed to buy 4 for 500 Yens on the way back home from his office. They were presented in cosy "peach sweaters" in lack of a better word. I dont' think the Japanese worry much about using lots of unnecessary plastic packaging.

Today I'll try to find some baby stuff for Bibu and some bits an pieces for the house, like proper coffee mugs and not the miniature ones we've been drinking from lately. Wish me luck!

1 comment:

  1. Dos blogs de españoles locos como ustedes, locos belgas en Japòn. (este es el que da un curso en japones)