Japan Costs Mad Cash

So I’ve noticed that I really only think in terms of Yen these days.  I went grocery shopping and spent ¥4300.  Which granted is more than I usually spend but I bought a bag of rice which alone was almost ¥1000.  But I was all excited because I got 3 giant peaches for ¥580.  Then I got home and was thinking about how much that would be at home.  $7.50!  $7.50 for 3 peaches!  Take into account that I was only able to get them for that price because they are super ripe and won’t last long so they were on the manager’s special cart.  Some fruits are even more outrageous.  A quarter of a watermelon is around ¥1000 or $13, cantelope is ¥1980 or $26, and grapes (I cannot remember exactly) are about ¥700ish for just one vine or $9.15.  Grapes might actually be more expensive than that but definitely not less.  It really puts into perspective the things we take for granted in the US.  Here is a low down of yesterday’s shopping list.

Bananas (always on the brink of ripeness) 5 ¥98 $1.28
Peaches 3 ¥580 $7.58
Apples 3 ¥380 $4.97
Kiwi 2 ¥150 $1.96
Butter 1 brick ¥380 $4.97
Eggs 10 ¥168 $2.20
Yogurt 4 (on sale) ¥216 $2.83
Cheese 14 slices ¥228 $2.98
Frozen Corn, Pea, and Carrot Medley 300g ¥228 $2.98
Frozen Pumpkin 300g ¥228 $2.98
Bread 6 slices ¥98 $1.28
Rice 2kg ¥880 $11.51
Marianra Sauce 200g ¥198 $2.59
Kimishen (thick noodles, a specialty of Nagoya) ¥208 $2.72
Ziploc Bags 10 ¥216 $2.83

Most of this was on sale and my bill could have been 25% higher.  I spent about $56 or so.  Oranges, bananas, and kiwi are usually my go to’s for fruit because they are the least expensive unless I find a deal.  Kiwi is usually ¥100 a piece which is about $1.30.  At home they are 3 for $1!  I spend tons of money on food and for some reason I am hungry all the time here!  Portion sizes in the store I would say are much smaller.  Yogurts are tiny, the butter is just 2 sticks, bread obviously isn’t even close to a loaf.

Portions at school or restaurants are enormous though!  You are supposed to eat everything on your tray for school lunch.  Usually I do because they are delicious but I eat with the staff and not the students so I can get away with not eating some things.  I have to drink a jug of milk everyday which I think is really disgusting but I’m so thirsty that I have to have it anyways.  Generally, I get a giant bowl of rice, some fish with some sort of salad (usually one or two veggies that are pickled not at all an American salad which I sorely miss), then a soup or stew or more fish.  Occasionally there is dessert or fruit.  I’ve had three giant grapes for one and 2 slices of pineapple for another.  I also get a cup of iced green tea.  The first week I was there everyone thought that I didn’t like the food.  But the Japanese eat soooo fast!  I can’t even move fast enough to eat that quickly.  I am so full half way through that I have to force myself to finish.  Luckily, I like everything.  Weird things that I have eaten at school:  baby sardines (which look like tiny sperm with eyes), cod roe (cod eggs which are dericious), and fish chips (dried little fish, I think sardines, really sweet at first then fishy.  The kids love them.).  So nothing too out of the ordinary.  But I am baffled by how skinny everyone is and the amount of food they eat in under 30 seconds.

And with that I will leave you with a video of my apartment.  Disregard how terrible I look.  It was ungodly hot here when I did this.  Also, most of it is sideways and I can’t figure out how to change it haha.


I should probably add in here that I’ve spent as much as ¥1000 ($13) on a single beer!