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Big In Japan

il_570xN.320884267When I was twelve, I was sure we had an underground cave inside the hill in our backyard. It was there, full of stalagmites and stalactites and an underground lake if I was lucky. All I had to do was find the entrance.

il_570xN.285471131But I wasn’t some pre-teen explorer; if I found the cave, I knew I could charge at least five dollars admission. This was not my first get-rich-quick scheme. When I was a kid in Arizona, I was sure the waxy coating inside palo verde seed pods was pure rubber, which, of course, meant they were extremely valuable. Why hadn’t anyone ever noticed?

il_570xN.268381657I also went into the desert with a magnet and collected bags of iron ore. Black sand that sticks to a magnet? There’s gold in them thar hills!

il_570xN.302760597Yes, I’ve had plenty of biz-uh-niss plans, but so far none of them have worked out like I hoped. At least I’ve never invested in real estate.

il_570xN.302899542For a while, I had a small online Dirndl business which is where these pictures are from. If you don’t live in Berlin, you probably think, “Dirndls, sure. That makes sense.” But selling Dirndls in Berlin is like specializing in western wear in Boston.

il_570xN.308066614Dirndl is the Tracht (traditional dress) in Bavaria, Austria and South Tyrol. Other regions also have Trachten, like the Spreewald Tracht (seriously, click on the link) and the truly amazing Schwarzwald Bollenhut. If Berlin had a Tracht, I guess it would be flip flops and a pair of rumpled Jogginghose.

il_570xN.302760121Although my Dirndl business definitely didn’t make me rich, the Japanese did go crazy for them. But mostly I did it because because it was fun to pose in the pictures.


Gute Nacht from a former Dirndl specialist. 😉

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