When riding a bike in Japan, you don’t have to wear a helmet. There is the same amount of bikes as there are cars on the road. In the city there are way more people walking then driving.
Chris and I went on a bike ride. It was so lovely as it was cold and sunny. We were all rugged up, peddling around the tiny streets with the cars. Riding a bike here really makes sense. it’s my new favourite thing to do.
It’s so cold outside that you basically freeze your face off. But when you enter any indoor place it’s super warm, so you almost get hot and totally forget about how cold it is outside until it hits you in the face again.
There are a few different types of toilets here in Japan. The ones I like are called “warmlets”. Basically normal toilets but the seat is warm, which makes going to the bathroom enjoyable. The more interesting ones are “Washlets”. Similar to the warmlet, but instead of using toilet paper you press a button for water to squirt you clean and air dry you clean. Lastly there is a squat toilet. I just can’t get myself to try them out, I am waiting for the right moment… like when I have no choice. Most bathrooms have the 3 different types of toilets you can choose from.
Most places you go here, you have to take off your outside shoes and put on slippers. All the different places have slightly different rules. Some accept socks or even bare feet. In the bathrooms there are special toilet slippers. When trying on clothes in a shop, shoes have to be off and left outside the change room. Everywhere you go, or at least where I have been, slippers are provided.
Vending machines are everywhere here. There are a few different types I have seen. For example ice cream, coffee in cans, bottled water, flavoured drinks and smokes plus more I haven’t seen yet. Interesting thing is that it’s illegal for young people to smoke here, but they can get it out of a vending machine because there is no one to stop them. Vending machines are literally everywhere in the city, country, shopping centres, on the streets. Literally everywhere. There is at least 1 every 50 meters. It makes sense. We have used them a few times, because it’s been more convenient to use one than to find a supermarket. There are a few common branded vending machines everywhere, also random ones with lots of different coloured themes. We are always on the lookout for new cool looking vending machines that we have not seen before.
In Matsumoto there are well springs of cold fresh flowing water that is clean, and open to the public to drink from. There are many different ones around the city. You can drink straight from the pipe that is pouring out the fresh cold water or fill up your bottle. I did both. Apparently in summer the water is colder.
Shrines and temples are everywhere in Japan, like every corner. This is the prettiest one we have found.
My most used Japanese words are:
Kawaii – cute
Konnichiwa – hello
Hai – yes
Arigatou Gozaimasu – thank you very much
Ohayou Gozaimasu – good morning
Nikuman – a type of steamed pork bun