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I'm Cathy Leamy, a Boston cartoonist and medical writer. Check out my comics! They're mainly about health care and autobio stories.

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Wednesday, December 5, 2007

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So much love for Tokyo convenience stores

Convenience stores turned out to be some of my best friends in Tokyo.

The sidewalks of the city do not tend to offer any garbage cans, and most times the quickie-marts were the only places where they could be found. Hooray for having a place to jettison tissues and other junk (but you had to be mindful to sort it - the trash receptacles are separated into sections for plastic bottles, combustibles, and noncombustibles).

The food at these shops is also surprisingly fresh and tasty. I'm used to American corner shops where the same corn dogs trundle on their little warming wheels for months on end. It was a treat to find that you can pretty much buy dinner from Tokyo's konbini and not be disappointed: steamed buns with filling, curries, all sorts of beverages, and my favorite kind of snackage, onigiri. "OM NOM NOM" was big in my vocabulary this trip.

Things you can purchase in Tokyo convenience stores:

Dried sea monsters!

Photo of seafood snacks in a Tokyo convenience store

Sake!

Photo of sake containers in a Tokyo convenience store

Ear picks!

Photo of an ear pick in a Tokyo convenience store

Fresh shirts, ties, and underwear!

Photo of clothing in a Tokyo convenience store

These are especially helpful if you've been boozing all night with your fellow salarymen.

Photo of a Tokyo businessman asleep in a subway station

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