on the corner of main street.
20091022 - 17:08
Things you might not know about Japan.
1. Everything moves faster. From the people, the cars, time, to the very way they talk.
2. Japanese Japanese food tastes exactly the same as Malaysian Japanese food. You have the typical udon, archetypal sashimis, standard wasabis, and the rather distinctive salmons. Perhaps it was due to the fact that our meals were provided for and predetermined by the tour guide, they must've taken some package deal with discounted rates or wad not. Still, I wouldn't judge the favour to either side, considering we had more than sufficient with bbq buffets for two nights. Except for the rather costly ramen we had on our own expense. Worth every yen tho.
3. The people there are very environmental friendly. They cycle by the numbers, have smoking stations. Recycle stations everywhere to be seen, rubbish bins impossible to locate. They literally make you think before you dispose. Which bin to choose, decisions, decisions...
4. Vending machines are as abundant as the manga there. They vend everything from drinks, snacks, cigarettes to iPods, and can be found even on the way up to Mt. Fuji amongst the trees. They're everywhereeeeee.
5. The sulphur dioxide emitted from the active volcanoes are unbearable. Okay, exaggerating a little, but by no means is it delightful. They should have warning signs on how bad they smell instead.
Near the summit, eggs which are boiled in the heat of the foul sulphur pond are sold. The shell turns black, and apparently each egg you eat extends your life by 7 years. Indirectly, 100yen=rm3.80=7years. Not that bad a deal to me.
6. Japanese birds have funny names.
7. The spectacular views they proclaim of and from Mt. Fuji are exactly as they deem. Literally breathtaking, in addition to the fact that it was exceptionally chilly at more than 2km above sea level. Pictures do absolutely no justice.
8. Tatami mats aren't as comfy as they're cool. We slept on em the first night at this traditional Japanese style kinda lodging. No doubt it's better than the usual concrete floor, but nothing beats the comfort of a thick mattress.
9. Yukata's however, are comfy.! Instead of the customary bathrobes, the hotels there provide yukata's for your wearing pleasure. Brings out the inner samurai hidden beneath you, or geisha, depending on your proclivity. Rather difficult when it comes to eating tho, the sleeves always gets in the way.
10. Onsen's are hot. To the unfamiliar, onsen is a term coined for hot springs. The inn we stayed in the first night offer such a service, with warm geothermally heated springs located in the outdoors. Yes, it was a public bath. No, swimsuits are not allowed whatsoever. Yes, in the bare nude. Yes, I went for it. The very last 15minutes of it's opening hours, haha. Sadly, I didn't have the viewing pleasure nor the experience of the image shown above, rather the awkwardness of gazing into another man's
11. Needless to say, the architecture there is transcendent. Not just to the naked eye, the craft and technique implemented quite simply should be acknowledged. The typology of a shopping precinct is impressively redefined, or perhaps the way it should be defined. Streets replacing malls, outlets develop vertically instead of horizontally. A different shopping experience, one that can only be in countries with such low temperatures, at the end of the day.
I has touched the concrete of Ando. 21-21 Design Sight, Tokyo Midtown.
The glass of Herzog. Prada Epicentre, Omotesando.
Tokyo International Forum.
Fuji TV Head Office Building.
Yokohama Landmark Tower.
12. Petrol pumps in petrol stations are hung from the ceiling. I'm presuming it's an effort to save space and construction. Makes sense somehow. Didn't really see it function though, might be difficult for the vertically-challenged. Heh, heh.
13. Their bathrooms are small. From the bathtub to the very seat of the toilet bowl. IT'S NOT JUST ME.
14. They have spiral escalators. Leave it to the Japanese to design shyts like these. Epic coolness.
15. The macha ice cream there tastes so much sweeter. What with girls like these serving you whilst breaking out into a song as they prepare your order. Mmmm..
16. The Japanese transported the Statue of Liberty to Tokyo as part of their treaty in yielding to the Allies during the end of WW2. Lol.
17. Kacang sakti.! Dragon Ball is apparently still a hit amongst the Japanese otakus, as are other notable Japanese animations.
Pokecenter.! Where's Nurse Joy.?
18. Foreign tourists are subjected to massive Japanese pensive syndrome upon departure.
Unfortunately, I wasn't able to visit notorious places of worthy in Japan such as Harajuku & Akihabara. Fortunately, it gives me an excuse to return.