Starbucks Just Came to Town

There was a long line and it took about 1:40 to grab a first latte in Kitami

Today (November 3rd) is a Japanese national holiday of “Culture Day”. This is a very abstract national holiday name at a glance though, the reason why today is the day is because today was the birthday of MEIJI Era Emperor. We Japanese divide years into certain periods due to basically the changing of the Emperor. Today, we are living in REIWA era, but it was after HEISEI, SHOWA, TAISHO and MEIJI era. Before the MEIJI period was EDO period. The period was governed by military governments, so we can say that MEIJI period is a kind of big milestone in terms of our system of government.

Anyway, we Japanese had not eaten any beef but fish until MEIJI period. It is said that, from the MEIJI period, government have tried to install many western cultural things like western way of outfits, cuisine, transportation system or like that. The government tried to make Japan like empires like UK, France, Russia in that time. And I assume that was the time we started to think like every western culture is high culture, and we underestimate Japanese domestic cultures. Anyway, MEIJI emperor tries to invite many western cultures to be stronger country or to make new era, his birthday is perhaps named Culture day.

And it is not on the day but just one day before the day, November 2nd. Finally, the Starbucks has come to our town, Kitami city, located in the country side of Hokkaido. The first Starbucks coffee shop was opened in Ginza, Tokyo in 1996, so briefly, it took about 25 years gap between Tokyo and Kitami. But still, I really feel much happiness because it was a great achievement for Kitami citizens who had longed the opening of the third place for several years.

Welcome board messages from Open Staff members, the most is like “We are happy to come here” or like that.

The taste of Chai Tea Latte was a taste of Tokyo. I felt Tokyo closer thanks to this Starbucks.

Author: Tomoharu Watanabe

Hi there. I'm 28 years old Japanese guy who currently live in northern part of Japan; Hokkaido, and a high school English teacher. Love reading books and watching movies and especially traveling around the world. Playing the guitar and kendo (Japanese traditional martial arts) is also my pastime.

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