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Amparo Bertram

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08:06 pm: Where does all the money go?
I got my first electric bill today. Luckily, it wasn't as bad as I had feared, so I don't feel as guilty about using my air conditioner.

Credit cards aren't very common in Japan, as I mentioned before, but neither are personal checks. The method of paying bills (if they're not drawn automatically from one's bank account, as mine will be when the paperwork is processed) is to take the bill to the nearest convenience store and pay with cash. Somehow, watching the money vanish right before my eyes just sinks in much faster than when I could use credit cards and checks to pay for everything.

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