Whenever three or more women of a certain age gather you can guarantee pickles are going to make an appearance. My MIL honestly carries them with her whenever she is going to be away from home for more than a meal. I have seen her bring them out of her handbag at friend's houses, at ryokan's and even plonk a tupperware of pickles on the table at a restaurant.
I thought it was just my MIL until I moved here and started hanging out with older people. It's not that I don't have friends my own age. I do. It's just that I also teach Senior's English classes and learn postcard painting at a senior citizen's centre and live in a neighbourhood with a lot of retirees so yeah, I hang with the pensioner discount set.
And so I eat a fair few pickles.
Here's an example of what happened when three women and I got together:
From bottom left- soy sauce pickled greens, pickled turnips, salt pickled greens and pickled quince. Then cinnamon iced biscuits (my contribution incase you needed explanation), more soy sauce pickled greens (with ginger this time) then more salt pickled greens, pickled red turnips, pickled daikon, more soy sauce pickled greens and some apple slices- salted of course.
Is it any wonder we each go through about 5 cups of tea with that?