If you drive about some of the more “rural” parts of Okinawa, you may notice small wooden stands with vegetables and fruit. They are unmanned, with an honor box to collect money. You might not recognize them at first, as some of them may look a bit run down or in odd places alongside the road. This is where you get the best deals on produce. Fortunately for me, there are about a dozen within walking distance of my house.

I always stop when I see them… you never know what you will find. Tomatoes, beets, onions, fresh garlic, lettuce, random greens, cabbage, potatoes, watermelon, dragonfruit… the list goes on. When you find something you like, drop the payment in the box and say “いただきます!” itadakimasu! Translation: I will receive (eat) this well, or something to that effect. It is also said before meals, as a thanks.

 

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