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Posted in: Tokyo reports record high 949 new coronavirus cases; nationwide tally 3,881 See in context

I got tested on the 23rd after 6 days of having a fever and flu-like symptoms, plus what looks like COVID toe. Flu test came back negative, twice. I also work at a school. Getting them to agree to test me took this long and only after multiple visits and phone calls to my clinic was I tested. The result came back negative, but who knows, really... As far as my local government is concerned, I don’t have it.

I had all the symptoms and more, but still, I was refused a test at first. Who knows how many people have it and are denied testing?

13 ( +15 / -2 )

Posted in: Tokyo schoolboy assumes other boy’s identity for 6 months; attends classes at top high school See in context

Huh, I think it’s unlikely A-kun is the real mastermind behind this. Looks like A-kun is a rich kid not gifted enough to make a top school so his parents enlisted B-kun’s help in exchange for a fat check.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: Tokyo governor calls for restraint in travel during Obon holidays See in context

We would be staying home, but my husband’s grandmother is dying. She got diagnosed with an agressive form of cancer recently, so now is our only chance to say goodbye. It’s clearly not ideal to be traveling now, but I hope our reason is good enough.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Posted in: Abe's abrupt call to close schools triggers confusion See in context

I think closing the schools is the right decision! Others countries are doing it too and they’re managing just fine. I don’t like Abe, but announcing it like that at the last minute was probably the only way to make it happen. Can you imagine all the meetings and teeth sucking if he had gone through the regular channels? They would still be discussing closing schools in April!

For those of you worried about your teaching jobs, you’ll probably be ok as long as you’re salaried. This is Japan, so yeah, the kids will stay home, but the teachers will probably have to go in... remember typhoons and snow days? Plus, teachers have to prep for the new school year... it’s the busiest time of the year!

-5 ( +6 / -11 )

Posted in: Hundreds leave quarantined cruise ship in Yokohama as coronavirus concerns grow See in context

I wrote about this yesterday, but couldn’t show proof. The vice health minister of Japan, Hashimoto Gaku, posted a now deleted picture on Twitter showing the entrances to the virus free (green) and the potentially infected zones (red) on the Diamond Princess. Both entrances were actually two doors leading to the same hallway, and separated only by a rope and some furniture. A few days ago, prof Kentaro Iwata revealed the quarantine process on the ship was completely inadequate and put everyone at risk. He was especially angry about the lack of clear virus free zones. It is quite clear now that Hashimoto and the other people in charge don’t know what they are doing and are putting at risk the lives of people on the ship, and now the general population. The government is saying the quarantine was successful and people were already infected. Really?! Nobody is that gullible. What about the sick officials? The government’s stupidity is astonishing... they will pay the price one way or another.

Here is a picture of the green and red zones on the ship:


13 ( +14 / -1 )

Posted in: Professor denies he was pressured to remove videos on virus-hit ship See in context

No surprise here. Poor guy must have been pressured real hard to remove his videos.

Hashimoto Gaku, Japan’s vice health minister, tried to discredit Dr. Iwata by posting a picture of the so-called green and red zones on Twitter. On the picture, you can see two doors leading to the SAME hallway, one door for the “green zone”, the other for the “red zone”. Both zones are only separated by furniture and ropes!!! I’m no scientist, but I’m pretty sure that’s not how to safely quarantine people! The tweet has since been deleted, probably because it had the opposite effect and only reaffirmed what Dr. Iwata said in his video!

If you scroll down here, you can see the tweet in question and the picture:


2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: 2 more Japanese evacuees from Wuhan infected with coronavirus See in context

Some information is missing. According to Japanese news sources, the man from Saitama and his child were allowed to go home on Jan 31 after initially testing negative. The man refused to stay with the other evacuees at a hotel, citing having to take care of his child as a reason to leave. We don’t know where the man and his family went since or what they did. On Feb 8, the man started showing symptoms and he was hospitalized on the 10th. Not much is known about the man and his family, but some people report he has 4 kids?! I live in Saitama, work at a school and my kid goes to Hoikuen. I think we need more information about the Saitama man!

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Posted in: American ALT teacher fired from high school after exposing genitals See in context

Guy was a JET because he was working for the Saitama Prefectural Board of Education. They don’t do private hire...

Source: Was a JET in Saitama until recently...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: School lunches keep Japan's kids topping nutrition lists See in context

I’ve heard some combinations are pretty strange, like white rice and bread served together (why?!!!), so I wouldn’t call kyushoku “balanced”. I’ve heard the quality varies greatly between cities however. To have a look at what kyushoku can be like, have a look at this blog:


0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Tax hike adds to woes for low-income households in Japan See in context

My family received one voucher, since we have a kid. However, the hoikuen fee for my 10 months old went up 1 man, so we are now paying 6 man for childcare. My city used to charge more for babies under one and it would get a lot cheaper each year after that. Now, there are only 3 categories: 0-2 years, 3 years and 4-5 years. So we’ll be paying 6 man for two more years... I guess they don’t have enough money to make childcare free for older children! I wonder what they are really going to do with all this extra tax money...

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan enacts legislation making preschool education free See in context

So you want other people to subsidise your childcare costs, while you go out and make loadza money? And if you're not making loadza money (so that day care is cheap), what's the point in leaving your baby with somebody else?

I’m not making a loadza money... That’s the point! If I stay home, we just survive. We don’t contribute to the economy, we don’t save money. Yes, we could do that for a year, but if we want more kids, it won’t work in the long run. If I work, we’re able to save a little, eat a balanced diet, have the odd fancy steak dinner from time to time and visit the family in Canada once every two years. The whole point of this article is that the government is trying to help families have more disposable income so they can hopefully have more kids and spend more. Hence why I said it’s a start in my initial comment.

Obviously, I would rather be on childcare leave and stay home with my kid, but since it’s not possible, then yes, I want other people to subsidize my kid’s daycare. In return, I’ll keep subsidizing other people’s healthcare bills by paying 3 man per month even though I rarely go to the doctor. That’s just the way society works. We all need each other. Not sure what is hard to understand about that. When you’re old someday, my kid will be paying for your hip replacement surgery.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan enacts legislation making preschool education free See in context

If someone offered me ¥50,000 a month to take responsibility for their baby all day every day, I'd think it was insane too - insanely cheap.

It would cost me more than that to put one of my dogs in doggy day care just twice a week, yet you are upset that you're expected to pay someone to care for your child?

I’m not upset I have to pay for hoikuen, but I think 50,000¥ is too much. Thankfully, we can afford it, but having two young children in daycare under the exact same conditions would be impossible. From what I understand, daycare here gets a little bit cheaper every year, until the child turns three and then it’s pretty inexpensive.

You can’t compare doggy daycare to hoikuen. Obviously it would be a lot more expensive as it’s a private service... What we pay for daycare is based on how much money we make, not the actual cost.. That would be a lot more, obviously.

Yes, I got sticker shock, but then again, I’m Canadian, so I’m used to things like free healthcare and affordable childcare ($140-$360/month). Hence why we want to move there...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan enacts legislation making preschool education free See in context

It’s a start, but more needs to be done if Abe wants Japanese people to have more children.

My son is five months old and started hoikuen in April. We pay ¥50,000 per month because he’s under one! This is insane!!!

He’s in hoikuen because even though I’ve been working in Japan full time for 7 years, pay taxes and contribute to social insurance, I’m NOT eligible for childcare leave because when I gave birth, I had less than a year and a half left on my contract. There’s a reason why many women quit their jobs when they have children. If they’re not seishain, many rules prevent them from taking childcare leave because the law is flawed. My husband works for a major Japanese company (think Sony or Honda) and even though he gets really good benefits, his salary is not high enough for me to stay home and care for our son until he turns one... can you believe that?! I’m a teacher and our monthly pay is similar... :o In 10 years or so, he’ll be in his forties and his salary will become more interesting, but we need the money now if we want to buy a house or have more children.

This country is broken... We want to have more children, but certainly not here. We’re planning to move to Canada in a few years...

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Posted in: Premarital medical tests spreading as Japanese tie the knot later See in context

I’d want to know why it wouldn’t be a good idea to check for diseases before marrying someone- wouldn’t you?

Especially since not many people here get regularly tested for STDs - or always use a condom! I'm pretty sure a lot of young Japanese go through their twenties without ever getting checked! STDs are often symptom less and can cause infertility, so really, checking before getting married - at the very least - should be encouraged! In an ideal world, everyone should get checked every year... I wish the Japanese government would make all STD checks free. Unless you have symptoms, it's not covered by insurance and you have to pay everything out of pocket. We're talking 20,000-30,000 to check for the main ones! Insane!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Police step up search for missing French woman in Nikko See in context

Nakimushi-Yama is a nasty mountain... I’ve climbed it a few times. It’s extremely steep with narrow paths. One wrong step could cost you your life or leave you seriously injured. It’s also poorly maintained and few people climb it. If she wasn’t an experienced hiker with the proper gear, things could have gone wrong for her. An experienced hiker I know got severely injured there after a bad fall. She had to stay in the hospital for months...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Athletes, bakers continue to be favorite jobs of Japan's 1st-graders See in context

They did a similar study in the US (not only limited to 1st graders) and the girls’ answers are completely different. The most popular answer for girls in the US was doctor, not baker. I think girls in Japan really need stronger females role models.


7 ( +7 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan's average adult height declining for those born in 1980 or later See in context

So, they have determined the connection between height and smaller babies, but haven’t done anything to investigating why babies are getting smaller? The fact that babies are getting smaller should be much more concerning than a drop in average height.

That would seem to be the next logical step after they figure out that babies are actually getting smaller. You know, like they are reporting they just figured out in this article.

We already know why. Doctors here bully pregnant women into gaining very little weight so they give birth to smaller babies...


12 ( +16 / -4 )

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