travel

A tourist in Tokyo Q&A: Toilets, menus and naked bathing

15 Comments
By LINDA LOMBARDI

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15 Comments
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Level-headed enough answers and advice here, though if someone says this:"I’m scared of eating strange things. How will I order food?" I would want to shake them. What's the worst that can happen if you eat a food you don't like? Just try it all! Anyone with dietary requirements has to be careful though.

A lot of convenience stores take credit cards, as do supermarkets and dept. stores of course. Little local shops probably won't, souvenir shops will. Always ask first if you prefer to use a card, "Credit card (kurejitto kaado) OK?"

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Another small wrinkle: Toilets nearly always give an option for a big or little flush. If you want to be environmentally correct, learn the characters for those terms because they’re rarely labeled in English. Not a bad idea to learn the character for “flush” also, just in case.

It would have been nice it they had included the kanji. So here you go:

Big (flush): 大

Small (flush): 小

Flush: 流

3 ( +4 / -1 )

FYI, a few years ago I accidentally hit the emergency button in a public toilet at the beach. I was in a hurry and just wasn't being careful. Well, the sirens went off and a red lite started flashing outside. I quickly moved down the beach a bit, and acted all non-chalant. But it was a very long time before the alarm turned off, and nobody had come to check. Made me glad it wasn't a real medical emergency.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The fancy toilets are the least of my worries.

Was working inside a global Japanese company, took a toilet break. A woman walked in and started cleaning WHILE I WAS GOING at a urinal! THAT freaked me out.

Was in a public toilet, don't remember where, but there was a channel of water streaming through on the floor that carried waste away (both types). Ok, fine. But it flowed from the men's side into the woman's side. THAT seemed wrong. Only saw 1 place like this.

Got onto an elevator where 5 women were already on it. We were going to the same floor. The door opened and I waited for them to get out. They didn't. Learned later than I was supposed to leave first. My mother would have slapped me if I'd done that back home.

Haven't been back into Japan since google translate started working (been through NRT a few times, but that doesn't count). Word Lens is a nice translation app from my testing with Spanish, German, and Afrikaans. Hope they get the Japanese working before the Olympics.

I feel bad for people with food allergies, like seafood/shellfish. There are little food cards sold which can be shown to the natives, hopefully those actually work. It is hard enough to explain to someone speaking the same language.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Those too afraid to step out of their proverbial bubble?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Hey, you are no longer in kansas, etc and much is no longer labeled in english(universal lingo my butt).

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Those too afraid to step out of their proverbial bubble?

If they were too afraid, would they even be coming to Japan in the first place? And as far as who is asking, it doesn't look like these questions were a compilation of actual questions that were asked. As the article said:

Here are answers to questions you might have if you’re contemplating a trip to the capital city, Tokyo.

Seems the author just came up with some things she though people may be concerned with.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Too True.

Remember taking a Distributor to a high class Sushi restaurant, he inisisted on a California Roll, he also said it was not a real/authentic place as they didn't serve it. Had to do plenty apologising as I often took people there.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

People should be thankful for being in a society which is light years ahead of what they're accustomed to. The trains run on time. There are vending machines as far as the eye can see. This is Japan. Really. People should be themselves, you know, just behave as they would if they were back home. Believe it or not, we're not all that different. It's ok if you are afraid of sushi, etc. We're all human. And no, I'm not being sarcastic.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

That's a much better posts than all of those that came ahead of it.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

My point being that people who come to Japan shouldn't worry that the local izakaya owner is going to hurl abuse and threaten to kill them if they forget to take off their shoes or something.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

And how would they know that?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Stranger they could research it also maybe basic Japanese.

Not sure about you but where I come from it is part of the the travel and experience/enjoymrnt.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Exactly, Pacech1967. It's a part of the travel and enjoyment experience. Took the words right out of my mouth. Visitors should quit asking so many questions.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Be brave with the fo I don't and culture.My Okinawan wifes be jock is I eat more japanese food than her and she was born and raised in Okinawa and I'm a white American.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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