There’s this really useful website called Hard To Find in Nagoya, which I have used a few times now to try to find things here. I would love to just adapt to Japanese life 100%, but I think it’s probably a slow process, and at the moment I still want cosmetics I recognise, food I know I can eat, and… shoes that fit.
Yes, in Japan, I have massive clod-hopping feet. I felt embarrassed yesterday every time I went into a shoe shop, because in Japan I have monster feet. After much internet searching, it seemed there were just a couple of stores in Nagoya which might stock shoes for giants… so I decided to check them out.
First, there was the department store Matsuzakaya, which I visited on Monday. They did have a few pairs of shoes which might have fitted me… if I wanted to spend over £60 to look like an old lady! So I crossed that store off my list…
Yesterday I visited Tsuruya in Sakae, which has a ‘queen sized’ section. I nervously went in, and headed for the queen area (calling it ‘queen’ doesn’t make it any better having monster-sized feet…). I found some really nice Clarks sandals which would have done me nicely for the summer, so I bravely asked the girl for my size. They were labelled in UK sized, so I asked (in my poor Japanese) “sizu nana (7) ga arimasuka?”. The girl looked shocked, “nana?!”. She replied. I held up 7 fingers to confirm that my Japanese wasn’t that bad. She looked embarrassed and scurried off to search for me. It turned out they only went up to a roku (6) in Japan. The girl kindly pointed out the ‘queen sized’ area to me, and I continued to search.
What I really needed were a pair of summer shoes for work, and a pair of summer sandals for weekends. I figured I was about a 26 in Japanese sizes, and eventually I found a pretty nice pair of work shoes, which should do for the summer. They were really expensive – so I hope they last and don’t cut my feet up!
What’s really heartbreaking is that Japan has some excellent shoes, really excellent. But they’re all tiny.
And it’s not just shoes either… the clothes are tiny too. I’m a ‘L’ or ‘LL’ if I want to be comfy, but that’s only for tops. I don’t know if I’ll ever find trousers to fit me! I’m going to keep searching though…
When it comes to cosmetics, I don’t mind trying new ones, but it’s hard to know what you’re buying sometimes! So I made it my mission yesterday to find Body Shop. I knew there was supposed to be one in Sakae, and I had heard it was in Parco, a big department store. I’m getting quite good at asking for things in department stores now, so I sought out the information desk and discovered there was a small on on the BF1 level – yay! It was just the right size, and perfect for me to stock up on a few things. There was also a Lush next-door – bonus!
Another new favourite of mine is Meidi-Ya in Sakae. It’s an import food store. It’s pretty cool, but most of the food comes from America or Australia. They did have a couple of over-priced things from England though. Some things are quite reasonably priced, especially if you really want them for a treat, but some things are outrageous! For example, I won’t pay nearly £6 for a small box of cereal, no matter now nice it is! Some of the cheeses and alcohols are really pricey too!
I didn’t think I’d miss much, food-wise, but oddly I have discovered that I really miss Baked Beans. Unfortunately, it seems to be impossible to find Baked Beans in Nagoya. Oh well… I’ll keep searching! 😀