I thought I would create a new category of posts, random observations, just for fun. These are things I’ve seen, heard, smelled(?), noticed, etc.
– The Tokyo Subway System is phenomenal. It seems like an impossible-to-navigate labyrinthine mess at first, but after traveling nonstop on it for the past week, I can say it is amazingly clean, organized, and of course efficient. So far, I have not seen a train arrive even 1 minute later than the time posted.
– Service here is great. When you enter a cafe or restaurant, every employee welcomes you, and when you leave they all thank you for your business (bowing all the while, of course).
– Japanese people love walking. There is a serious amount of walking to do here, but they all do it with gusto.
– Tokyo may be a sprawling metropolis of skyscrapers, but it has a large amount of meticulously-manicured parks and gardens plopped literally in between commercial areas.
– They love asking random questions about the USA. One chef at a restaurant asked me what the difference between ‘avenue, road, and street’ is. I didn’t really have an answer.
– It is dead silent on trains, even when they’re packed. Everyone sits or stands quietly. Talking loudly, eating, drinking and making phone calls are big no-nos.
– Japanese convenient stores (konbini in Japanese) are everywhere and extremely popular. The two biggest chains, 7-eleven and FamiMart (FamilyMart) seem like they’re located everywhere 12 feet. In a 5-min walking radius from my hostel, there are three 7-elevens and two FamiMarts.
That’s it for now! Tomorrow, I leave for a short 2-day trip to Nikko, and then will return to Tokyo until Oct. 7th.