I know what you are thinking, what a strange picture. But this picture is for the purpose of explaining some things. So, let's start at the top. You see three things there. These are handy things in the winter called "hokairo." Now hokairo are really cool, or rather, warm. They heat up when exposed to air and you can put them in your pockets or hold them to keep warm in the winter. This is very important when there is no central heating (or when you are standing outside all night long.) Japan has some wonderful stuff. There are two kinds in the picture. The small white one is a "sticky" version. (an unopened package is next to it.) This sticky type you put on your clothes and it keeps you warm. This is a mini version. The orange one sticking out of the blue checkered cover is a normal version (also mini). This one you just hold. I have a cute cover to put them in that keeps in the heat and feels fuzzy. I love the stuff you find in Japan!!!
Next you see the baby blue pillow looking thing. This is actually a bottle warmer. In the winter you can buy hot drinks in plastic bottles. This came free with a bottle of hot tea I bought. If you put it over the bottle, it keeps the drink hot longer. Very nice. But today we didn't use it for drinks. When we wanted to play football today, we had the problem of no football. In the beginning, we used the Frisbee until it broke. So we had to find an alternative. So I took this bag, stuffed my gloves and a headband inside and pulled the string tight. And so you have an instant mini-football! It worked really well actually. We played with this until it was time to go.
And finally you will notice another picture of my cell phone. I seem to look like I like large things hanging from my phone. The two new girls and I had gone out to a mall like place for lunch after church. I went home early to clean and prepare and I left my cell phone with them. (remember I have other large things hanging from my cell phone, all gifts) They were of course amused with my collection of straps, so as a joke, they bought me another one. They put it on and then returned the phone. I was very surprised when I picked up the phone and found extra stuff on it! So now I have a very large, gold sequined heart hanging from my cell phone. This is very much not my style. But it was pretty funny joke. We'll see how much longer I'll tolerate all these huge things on my cell phone. It might be time for a "style change."
That's the funny thing about "my style". A lot of the really extravagant fashion stuff I have are actually gifts from other people. Because I appreciate the thought and the people who gave them to me, I usually use or wear what is given to me. But in most cases, this is all stuff that I wouldn't have ever bought myself. It's just people's opinions of my style. So because I wear them, it re-enforces people's opinions, and I get more, similar gifts. Eventually I become used to it and it really does become my style. It's a very strange phenomenon. So "my" style actually becomes other people's impression of my style. But in the end, I suppose it doesn't matter. I like 90% of what I get, so it's all good. The good news is that it's so much easier for me to wear strange or goofy fashions in Japan than in Texas.
And in other random news, people in Japan are very kind to me. For instance, I get a lot of free food. The reason I'm writing this is because just now my doorbell rang. This girl I met at a convince store (her family operates it) had just brought me a bag of food. If she doesn't see me in a long time, she will bring over just expired food from the store. Today it was a bunch of sandwiches and rice balls. It's really nice. Now I have food for tomorrow!