i've never been inside of the kappy's liquors on revere beach parkway. i've passed by it on many occasions, located on the corner of a busy highway intersection, this huge structure with the can't-miss signage. i guess being a non-drinker never made me curious about visiting - that is until today. one reason was to visit the adjacent redemption center to return some beer bottles. market basket - where i usually go - won't take them because they don't sell beer. i also wanted to check out their selection.

with my saddle bags full of clinking empty beer bottles, i rode off to kappy's. i've always thought it was in either malden or everett, but the store is actually officially in medford. this isn't the only kappy's; there are other stores in other towns, but this is the biggest one i know of in the surrounding area. locally, kappy's is synonymous with booze.

this particular kappy's was renovated recently. since i've never been to the old one, i can only guess it was to make the place less scary. maybe that included more glass walls. when i pulled into the parking lot i could see one of the clerks checking out my motorcycle as i arrived.

with my two bags of empty bottles i headed to the redemption center first. there was nobody else there except one other woman and a man sitting inside a room whose job might be to keep an eye on things. the machines they had were different than the ones i'm used to. inserted bottles spun on rubber rollers as optical sensors try to read the barcode. if for whatever reason the bottle wasn't recognized, it'd push it back out the feed. this is different from the machines at market basket where bottles and cans are received but rejects empty out in a discard chute down below.

i ended up redeeming about a dollar's worth of bottles. one of the smutty nose was rejected because the barcode had ripped, and the machine didn't take any of the wood chuck hard cider bottles (they don't have MA deposits, i was just curious to see if they'd still take them).

the redemption center had a special design: the only way to exit was through the store. they had a pretty good selection, but more hard alcohol than beers (which is true in all liquor stores). that being said, the whole back of the store was a wall of display cases well stocked with all sorts of beers. it was all too much for me, and having very little knowledge of beer, i was looking for the hard cider section instead. they had woodchuck in every variety, including some limited releases. i decided to try another flavor besides the more familiar amber. i ended up picking the 802 dark & dry ($8.69 6 pack), only because it seemed to be a popular flavor since there was less of it than the others. i also bought a bottle of chum churum korean soju wine ($11.99) for my mother (for her 60th birthday this friday).

while waiting in line to pay, i noticed a container of bottle openers. i just happen to be looking for a churchkey, after my father took the one i had a while back. these were nickel-plated and made in india (59¢); a sticker on the side identified it as a "can tapper." i had my driver license on the counter but the clerk didn't bother examining it, just gave me a "you're all set." a nearby sign alerted customers to kappy's twitter account.

another reason for visiting this kappy's is to check out the air raid siren still mounted on one of the utility poles. i first noticed it 2 years ago, in what was coincidentally the closest i ever got to the medford kappy's. i've always been meaning to come back and investigate but never got the chance. this is the 2nd air raid siren that i know of (the other being on top of the SCATV building in union square; there used to be a 3rd in watertown center but they took it down a few years ago).

i tried the dark & dry hard cider as soon as i got home. i was afraid it'd be like a stout with a bitter taste, but it was similar to the amber hard cider. supposedly the 802's are made with caramelized sugar instead to make them less sweet, but only by a little bit.

on a whim, i decided to try the nearby dollar store to see if they had any holiday lights on sale. at first i thought i arrived too late because a lot of shelves were bare in anticipation of new stock. then i found all the leftover christmas stuff bunched together in one area. they had many boxes of old-fashion bulb christmas lights but i wasn't interested in those; what i wanted were energy-conserving LED lights. i was about to give up when i found a few boxes: one assorted colors, one plain white, one blue. normally they sold for $6 a box but now they were discounted 50%. i ended up buying the box of assorted colors and the blue ones.

turns out these are the exact same LED lights i currently have on my windows. i bought the last one back in january from the dollar store (they were just $2.50 after clearance).

since it's only a matter of days before i take down the christmas display, i didn't bother adding this 3rd strand of color lights to the window. however, i did add the blue lights to the growing collection in my storage closet, which currently has a strand of purple lights (purchased on a halloween clearance for $2.50), making it seem even more cosmic.

i made some more reuben sandwiches for dinner. i'm not yet sick of it, i still have enough ingredients left to make 2 more servings.