3 in 30 - 2000.12.30
For quite a number of monthsfrom late August 2000 or sothe officials on the base have announcing a plan to replace the gasoline storage tanks at the west side service station. This was the station we found most convenient to use since we live and work on the west side of the Yokota Air Base runway. We have also used this service station to purchase our kerosene, which heats the water which heats our house. Incidentally, this was the sole station on the base that sold kerosene (at $1.45/gallon).
The first of October, the station was shut down for excavation and tank replacement. It was expected that the work would be completed in a couple of months.
In the meantime, we are purchasing our kerosene locally, at the Kajiya, just down the street from last week's shrine. It is costing us about ¥48 per liter which is about $1.68 a gallon. At that price, it isn't too bad, but we certainly have been used to being gluttons with cheap fuel.
These two men were handling the flow of Kajiya touyu (kerosene) buyers Saturday afternoon. The price on Saturday is about ¥ 3 less expensive than during the week.
While waiting to take a picture across the street, it seemed like I needed a small snack and this takoyaki shop happened to be handy. I was at the northwest end of the neighborhood so the bikepath shop was not convenient. I got ten and snacked on them. I suspect that major portion of the clientele is from the pachinko parlor just next door.
The shop also has Okonomiyaki and some sweet bean cakes. We haven't had any good okonomiyaki in a long time. We will have to search some out. The place we used to go burned down.
This is the temporary stand across the street I was trying to get to. They are set up to sell New Years' decorations and greenery much like a Christmas tree lot run by the Boy Scouts.
The decorations usually contain a bit of evergreen, some bamboo, a stalk or sheaf of rice, bits of cut and folded white and red paper and some rice straw rope. Small ones about the size of a fist are made for car interiors, larger ones for apartment front doors, and on up to two meters with bamboo logs for the fronts of large department stores.
All of the items are obviously symbolic of various hopes and wishes for the new year though exactly what they are we are not certain. Still, we hope all of our readers enjoy the Year 13. At least that is what it will be in Japan.