A mini guide to reading between the lines in Japan

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August 28th 2007
Published: August 28th 2007
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Although I do enjoy blogging with mini-history lessons or amusing anecdotes, I figure a mini guide is perhaps more entertaining to describe my time in Japan. Plus, I think the heat short circuited my short term memory erasing any random facts or dates in history I would have tried to remember and force feed you on this blog.

1. Feed deer in Nara or Miyajima at your peril. The trouble begins when you run out of deer cookies. Cost of ticket to Nara. 960 yen (from Osaka). Cost of Deer cookies. 150 yen. Watching a japanese boy flee from 15 hungry horned deer and almost pee his pants. Priceless.
side note: Some of those small baby deer would conveniently fit into your side satchel to make a great balcony pet in your one room apartment or suculent and tender deer chops if you can make it past mama deer. Just kidding.

2. How about a side of eggs or seaweed on your order. No? Have some eggs and seaweed anyways. We might try to make a concession and hide the egg in your lasagna instead.

3. The Japanese arn't advocates of a save-a-bag or save-on-wrapping program when it comes to any gift (omiyage) related purchase. You can be rest assured that your purchase will be thoroughly wrapped in enticingly cute paper.

4. Semi-express Train? Sub-express? Super Rapid Express? Limited Express? Special Rapid Service?
You might miss your train by the time you figure out which of those trains would have saved you time.

5. For hiders of the sun, the Japanese are not big on sunglasses. I'm guessing the Godfather movie didn't make a good impression on them.

6. Did you miss Michael Jackson and his white gloves? Japan is waiting to greet you with open arms and white gloves... from the train conductor to the information lady at the local shopping mall.

7.Smiling and nodding does not mean yes.

8. Need a cutting edge technology upgrade to your palm pilot? Japan is not the country for you. However, if you require a paper 2008 dayplanner you have 3 aisles at any stationary or department store to peruse. I'd like to classify the aisles as follows: cute; really cute; Its just that cute and I don't know why but I'm buying it anyways.

9. For gift (omiyage) cookies that are overpriced, overpacked and underflavoured, presenting these cookies to someone in your social sphere will change your status from being "that jerk/loser/bad son/unfaithful husband" into that popular kid you never were in school.

10. The shinkansen will break your wallet if the shopping in Tokyo beforehand did not.

Additional photos below
Photos: 9, Displayed: 9


one of the most photographed views in Japanone of the most photographed views in Japan
one of the most photographed views in Japan

I think I contributed to that count by a few.

28th August 2007

reminiscent of Taiwan
"Smiling and nodding does not mean yes. " I found this at train platforms in Taiwan, even among English-speaking types. "Is this the train to Kaoshiung?"; smile and nod, but Not Actually. Hee hee hee...
28th August 2007

Re: Reading between the lines in Japan
Hey, didn't you know that Michael Jackson got his white glove idea from Japan? Have you seen the forearm covers women wear while driving or the hand covers attached to the bicycle handlebars? That was a most hilarious travelog. It's really amusing to hear the perspective of someone new to Japan. I'm glad to know that you made it to Nara and Miyajima. It's like I was there with you in my former hometown. Albert
28th August 2007

Those crazy Nihon-jins
You have to remember that the Shinkansen is used in lieu of domestic air travel, hence the price. Also, you forgot to mention that the omiyage fruits usually cost around $40...for a cantaloupe.
6th September 2007

Ohh I love Japan!!! and all the stylish funky Japanese girsl... Have fun there! :-)

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