It's hard to find public trash cans in Tokyo

Yes, and you can drink alcohol on a subway legally, but walking while eating is considered taboo.

Walking and smoking is rare, people seem to stand in place and smoke, then move on.

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As an aside, I consider those people who went through my trash holier than thou types, who are always making assumptions of other people based on what I looked like, as if I couldnt possibly understand the nuances of anything in a foreign country.

I mean, its not like I studied Japan and Japanese language for 9 years before going there (actually, I did), or held a college degree in their language (also, actually, I did, and do). I mean, he’s a foreigner, what does HE know?

There are a lot of people who like to make assumptions about others in the world, who are quick to judge and chastise, and be snarky when they think they can get away with it, often to impress their peers. Some people make a habit of acting like this, and putting a holier than thou attitude on, much like the reverend’s wife from the Simpsons.

Some of those people are in Japan, and gee, some of them are, gasp, even on boing boing (I can think of a couple right now who do this consistently). You wouldn’t know anyone like that, would you?

I’m long overdue for a return visit! Hopefully in the winter of 2020…

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I assume people have their strategies for walking while smoking. They must because Japanese people seem to smoke -a lot-. I was very impressed by the ratio of the amount of smoking to how few cigarette butts there were in the street. Again, this was about ten years ago now, so I can’t comment on how smoking habits may ave changed since then.

I visited last year for the first time and it was everything and more than i wanted it to be, my dream now is to save up enough to do a long trip from the south end of Japan and make my way up north :smiley: Though i would love to move there, its so beautiful.

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Smoking outdoors is illegal in many parts of Tokyo at least. Apparently for the Olympics they are finally going to make it illegal in restaurants and bars as well sometime in the next 12 months.

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If there’s 2 places I’d tell anyone visiting Japan to see:

#1- Kyoto in the height of fall for a couple weeks. Nanzenji and Fushimi-Inari shrine at night are personal favorites. If you reserve 3 months in advance, and don’t mind copying a Buddhist sutra for a couple hours first as precondition to entry, Saihouji (aka Kokedera, the moss temple) are all standouts.

#2- if you’ve been to Japan before, and don’t mind seeing mostly nature, go to Rishiri and Rebun islands in the middle of summer. You can only get to them by sea ferry from Wakkanai, the northernmost port town. Hiking Mt. Rishiri takes about 10 hours- but the view back across the sea to Hokkaido will be something you’ll remember for the rest of your life. Stay in the emergency shelter up there (just a small wooden barn sized shack) overnight for an incredible moonscape and sunrise. Rent a bike and bike around Rishiri, and both islands are covered in rare wildflowers.


why would you put so much effort into learning to speak the language of a place that treats immigrants so poorly?

don’t get me wrong i love japan… to visit

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No I can’t think of any offhand, but I can think of some people who come to Japan short term, suffer from culture shock, then complain about it forevermore.

I know what you mean, but I had no choice but to learn English, the people where I was unfortunately born use it all the time :wink:

America just sucks so hard. Really. I’m not joking.

Japan? Japan was by far the friendliest place I’ve ever been treated as a stranger- even before coherent polite distal Japanese keigo left my mouth. Once that happened, I was treated even better than I am occasionally by my own family, here in the US.

The Swiss, I’m told, are arrogant af towards foreigners trying to actually learn and work at watchmaking in Switzerland (I have experience in this field as well, though most Swiss I’ve met in that capacity have been kind). Even if that were true, there are things recorded in rare books in several of their dialects that don’t exist anywhere else. I need that information, so I will learn Swiss French, and Swiss German, where applicable.

Language is merely a tool for an end, no different than any other tool I use on a daily basis. And I use a lot of tools. If your argument against learning to communicate in a more varied way is completely based on how kind the people are that use it you have missed the point of it.

For the record, Japan does not treat immigrants universally poorly. It is a complex situation and depends on who the Immigrant is and what reason they are there for. As well as the socio-economic background of the person doing the treating.

Now the mental health system there is something you can assail all you want- its just abysmal.

Households in Tokyo don’t pay to have normal garbage collected. Only large items, like futons, suitcases, etc. Not stuff you’d be throwing away at the conveni.

Sidewalk and subway station trash cans in Tokyo disappeared en masse in 1995. Store trash cans have gradually moved indoors and gotten smaller openings in the intervening decades.

JR train stations now usually have trash cans, with small openings, if you look hard enough.

Yes you do have to pay for garbage collection in Tokyo (the part I live in anyway), the price you pay for the special plastic bags you have to put your garbage in is the fee. It used to be free for everything, even big items, but not any more.
Here is an example of the prices from Mitaka City. As you can guess, one 5 liter plastic bag is not going to cost ¥90 to produce.

  • Mini bags (5 liter) 90yen
  • Small bags (10 liter) 180yen
  • Medium bags (20 liter) 370yen
  • Large bags (40 liter) 750yen

That system didn’t take in Shinjuku. So it was abandoned. Most people use small shopping bags for the twice weekly burnable days. Any brand they like of larger (45L or 70L bags if it’s a big day).

I do indeed want to see Kyoto and my intention when i get to go back was to mostly go hiking so these recommendations work great for me :slight_smile: Thanks!

Yes and I’ve met some of those people.

I think this is the only time I have ever actually mentioned this particular gripe. So your argument, if directed at me personally, is unfounded.

Enjoy Tokyo. I have no desire to ever live there, it’s very different from the rest of Japan, most of which, Ive seen.

I wasn’t much of a fan of Tokyo the couple of days i was out there. Rest of the time i was pretty happy exploring the surrounding areas by Kanagawa, though as i said in a previous post i really do hope to explore more of Japan next time i go. Particularly interested in more rural areas.

We’ve got those types here too. The English term is “homeowners association.” :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

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It was just a general comment.
Thank you, although I do agree that Tokyo isn’t the best of places to live, but it has all the main museums who are my clients so I have to keep a base there. However, I bought an old farmhouse in the mountains about 30 years ago and I am able to move back and forth between the two.

Wow, that’s not fair!! “No taxation without garbage collection!!”

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