10 Things You Realise When You're in JapanFriday, April 22, 2016
Two Weeks in Japan Got Me Like
photographs by levina
So as everyone knows, Japan has been suddenly a very popular vacay destination--thanks to the visa free policy for Indonesians. And all the intstagram posts in Japan. Anyways, I got a chance to spend about 2 weeks there with mi familia. And I want to share to you:
10 things you will realise when you're in Japan
1. They have the best hospitality attitude.
Really, guys, if there's an award "The World's Best Attitude in Serving People", Japan would win it, no brainer. I mean, I haven't been to everywhere. But I can assure you that they would. They are very courteous, they always smile, they speak in a very soft tone (Imagine them saying Sumimasen). Even when the customers get angry, they will never be rude. The people are very helpful to the foreigners also. As if they are all working together, so Japan would be promoted as a great place to visit. Once we were in a small town, and didn't know how to get to Mount Fuji. We went to a local agent's office, and asked for directions. She didn't speak English, but she did everything to explain everything--she grabbed maps, pens, circling here and there, googling stuffs for us, showing pictures, and one thing that agents won't do if we weren't using their service, she gave us all the maps. Salute!
2. Japanese are so good in creating management systems.
One example is that their efficiency in restaurant systems. A lot of places will have this "vending machine". You'll have to insert your money, select the food you want, and you'll receive a coupon. This, is before you queue outside the restaurants. So when you get a table, you'll just give the coupons, they don't have to worry about you not paying or anything. It just makes everything quicker. One time, me and my sister wanted to get some McDonald's breakfast. But the line was too long for us to catch the train (oh yea, the train was really on time, think i don't even have to mention it). But we tried anyway. But the line moved so quickly. There was 8 men before us, but we were already paying and getting our food 5 minutes later. Again, salute!
I think if anyone lives there for 2 years, she or he will be so good at managing!
3. There is not many trash bins around.
So many times, we wanted to chuck our food wrappers/ tissue, but we could never find one single bin. Apparently, they are educating their people to be responsible with their own waste. Even so, you don't see a lot of rubbish around! Also in the river.
4. Cherry blossoms are way more beautiful in real life than pictures.
The first time I saw endless Sakuras, I was puzzled. That pretty. That pretty. The ones falling on the ground, or the pink beds above my head. Gosh. I can't explain more. Btw, they're only prime in 1 week time. So we were lucky, really. Also, they love to picnic underneath it!
5. The way the mountains stand and the river flows, Japan is a she. A princess, really.
On the way to Shirakawa-go, we were on this bus. On the right, I could see the fat pine trees, so green, so thick and lush. Far beneath me, blue water flowing, it was a crime to miss the view. On the left, I could see the majestic mountains that made me hum any soothing tunes. That was when me and my sister agreed, Japan's nature is elegant like a princess.
6. Pick any food anytime anywhere, they taste nice.
Previous friend-travelers told me about how food tastes nice literally everywhere in Japan. I doubted it. But with us being hungry in weird hours and random places, forced us to buy food on the street or at Lawson (their most common convenience store), I knew my friends weren't exaggerating. Everything tasted good. We often went out in the morning to buy food at Lawson and served everything on our dining table, good breakfast every morning!
PS. Their beef are awesome. Even at the most random place. The meet melts, and the texture is so delicate almost like sashimis. So juicy.
7. So much green tea!
You'll find green tea in soft serve (so good), in cakes, in mochi, in KitKats, in everywhere. Not that it's a new thing, but there is an excessive amount of green tea choices.
8. They have the best toilet seat in the world.
Heated toilet seats though, can't resist. Especially in cold weather! Automated wash and dry, they even have the fake sound of flushing water--you know when to use it haha! Just don't get mixed up with the button to call SOS. I once pressed the wrong button, and an officer came and asked if I'm okay. Lol!
9. So kawaii just like in comics!
I used to read comics--still am, only Miiko though. Anyways, you know the school girls and guys and the men in suits riding Shinkansen. They came to real life! Their rectangle bags, them walking in groups, them riding bicycle. So kawaiiii!
10. Japanese are good with small details.
They are generally thoughtful. A bus we were on, had like a foldable baby seat. In the public toilets, they have this built-in baby seat in the cubicles. Most of the restaurants would give you wet warm napkins. Once we stayed at this Airbnb place in Osaka. The host prepared 5 toothbrush: 2 were the big ones for parents, 3 were the smaller ones for the kids. And on the last day we were there, she left 2 big box of pockys, and 3 smaller ones of chocolates!
Another reason why I point this last one out, it's because the cartoons by Studio Ghibli, if you're being observants, they're so detailed with their props and animations! So much looove!
11. They have eyes for pretty, colourful things. They are good in packagings.
The justification was made because of the pictures in posters (so many anime-like mascots), and how they have cute expressions when explaining things--with intonations and hand gestures and all. Their choices of clothing (not all. Many were in black). They colour the station green/ yellow/ pink. Their shinkansen's colour is never boring. The handrail of escalators are floral at some stations. Their gutters are painted. One thing that everyone would agree, they wrap their food so good, so beautiful you would drool.
yes, that last one's gold sheets. no joke.
Well, well! Think that's enough for now. I'll see you soon, still on Japan, but moving on to different topics
Oh, check out #isleofjapan on instagram for our days in Japan. Both of my sisters were in the fun too. Have a good weekend!
Love you lots