Tuesday, December 16, 2008

I have magical powers!!

I realized today that I have magical powers!! I can make people disappear from the post office! All I have to do is walk in with 3 boxes and 7 bags of packages to send!! Seriously...I made people disappear today when they saw how long they would have to wait in line! It didn't help that the "baba" (old lady) working today is slower than molasses!! Good God I don't know how she hasn't been fired yet! Anyway, I think I am becoming famous at my little "inaka" (countryside) post office. I have actually heard people talking about the "gaijin" (foreigner) and all her packages! I also can put in special requests for 1000s of the customs forms and EMS forms since they run out pretty quick due to me! They also give me many small gifts of appreciation...tissues, calenders and today I got a package of chopsticks! I kinda feel loved by the people at the post office...though I wonder if they don't groan on the inside when they see me coming!! ^__^

Well....I did something very Japanese the other day. I went to our local shopping mall and they are all set up with a gift giving section (it is a gift giving season here too...not Christmas but end of year gift giving time!) so my honey and I bought and paid to have delivered a box of canned beer for his dad and a box of sweets for his mom.

There many things to choose from....fish, coffee (nothing special...just regular coffee from the supermarket in a box and 2x the price!), boxes of oil (nothing says I love you like a box of cooking oil!! ^__^) but it was easy to pick out sweets and beer. It felt so weird sitting down and filling out the forms, answering questions about the wrapping (we choose "eco" wrapping btw-"eco" meaning environmentally friendly). The box of beer cost about $35 and the sweets cost about $30. I'm thinking they will be happy!

Speaking of "eco".... as I stated above "eco" means "environmentally friendly". In the same vein as "eco" is "my bag". "My bag" (literally spoken in English by Japanese) means any bag you bring yourself to use instead of store bag. We happen to have (thanks to my friend Clarie) Whole Foods recycled bags. The other day the taxi driver saw us with all these blue Whole Foods bags and said "ahh....my bag". Of course he didn't mean "his" bag but it was confusing when I first started hearing the words "my bag". I had a student write about it a few years ago. The title of her story was "my bag boom". Honestly, I thought she was talking about one of her bags exploding!!! I had to have my boss explain it to me!!


Lisa Falzon said...

What an interesting blog you have! I loved the bit about the 'eco' mix up. I used to teach English as a Foreign Language in my country (Malta) and I loved the little nuances of language and all the cultural hurdles that came with the job along with the future-perfect-continuous and phrasal verbs.


MaliciousGnome said...

Haha! I can't stop laughing about "my bag boom".

Oh how I'd love to receive a big ol' package of cooking oil as a gift XD So, maybe not... ;) But those sweets look delicious!

I think it's a job requirement that postal workers are slow as molasses... my poor postal workers put up with me always coming to retrieve packages (my postman/woman never seems to want to leave them on my porch), so I guess I shouldn't complain :)

Happy Holidays! :D

'Cuz I Felt Like It! said...

I could see it now...me in the back of a taxi and someone calling MY bag THEIR bag! HAHAHA!!!

P and P said...

I love this. When I went into post offices in Japan, I had a different kind of magic. I became invisible.

The clerks would look right past me and help one or two people who came in after me, until I'd get aggressive.

I could also make clerks disappear in other places. In one store with only one clerk (I think)I went in and found an empty desk with a lit cigarette in the ashtray. I waited ten minutes, called out in Japanese, the cigarette burned down, and no one ever appeared.

If you ever come back to N. America,you will lose your magical powers.


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