Thursday, August 16, 2007


Thursday – the big gift show is breaking down after lunch, guess I’ll go up and see if I can get an armful of stuffed toys for E. A lot of the exhibitors at the shows are from China and Japan, and rather than pack up and cart their stuff home (shipping at times is higher than the manufacturing costs) they sell samples out of their booths. Most of the shows put on here are ‘trade shows’, meaning that there is no retail selling, the exhibitors are showing their stuff for people that are buyers or wholesalers or have their own stores and are looking at the new upcoming merchandise. This week is a rerun of the February gift show, full of thousands of booths of glass and stuffed animals and toys and Christmas junk (sorry, highly refined objects of art depicting Santa Claus and/or angels). After the February version I picked up a soft rolling animal backpack and filled it with stuffed toys for E; I understand she is wearing it almost every day around the house in Portland. Next week comes appliances (hopefully I can get a new cooktop and ovens for our kitchen redo), and off-price clothing and wedding apparel and over in the big hotel ballroom ladies lingerie. Maybe Kylie will be there modeling her new stuff – well, we can dream. If not Kylie I know it will be other skinny girls.

Lots of background noise here in the office today. We have one of those water coolers that take a five gallon bottle of water in here. After I left last night someone put a new bottle on, and there was a crack in the plastic water jug, resulting in five gallons of water on the floor. It was mopped up off the tiled area, but the carpet is still soaked. So I went off to the warehouse and borrowed one of those fans used to blow air down and dry carpets – there are a lot of them in there, so I guess wet carpet is a common occurrence. So between the big overhead ventilation pipes roaring away there is now a noisy fan blowing air around in front of my desk. Time to pull out the Ipod, or find some other music on YouTube.

I was having a discussion with someone from the UK about fresh fruits and stuff available at the supermarket. I guess I am used to shopping at California and other west coast major stores that have large veggie departments. This is the one at the store I usually shop at:

Most of the big stores around us have similar sections. It’s stocked all year, with stuff coming from South America when it’s out of season here in the US. Things do change with the seasons – strawberries and cherries when they are ripe in California, moving from summer peaches and stuff over to winter apples, but there are always greens and bananas and lots of standard items. I do like to visit big markets when we travel overseas, and usually don’t see fresh sections as big as ours, though I do remember quite a large store somewhere in the middle of France.

Vegas doesn’t have much local produce, so there are no major farmers markets around. California was great for framer’s markets, with some beautiful ones up in the Frisco Bay area. Tesco is supposed to open some stores here in Vegas soon, so we’ll see if the British food offerings increase or they just become an imitation of American stores.

Now to leave you with a motivational poster that seems very relevant for several people I know:

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