Around 80% of Japanese people hold the poise of elegance, cleanliness and perfection whenever I see them. Some of the things that they do here makes me wonder if people in the U.K would try to do more if the culture was similar or if people had the mentality to have a more presentable appearance or personality. It seems like the more I watch the Japanese and the way they live, the more I learn about them.
Appearance is important!:
I’m not surprised that the makeup rooms in bathrooms flare frequently used. Women and men rarely have scruffy appearances e.g messy hair, untied shoelaces, untucked shirts. They know how to look good on a daily basis. You rarely see someone take out a brush to do their hair on public transport or while walking on the street.
Everyone has a job and is ready to help:
There is at least 3-4 people for car parking in busy areas, construction work usually has at least 2-3 people to direct people away from danger. Even when you go to department stores or fashion shops, the shop assistants are always so helpful, tell you about sale items, always smiling and constantly asking if you need help or another size. People who are in uniform always look good and never look like they don’t want to do their job or are not ready to help. Of course, depending on their mood like everyone else it would vary.
So quiet but not vigilant:
I love that at night, it can be deadly silent and also in public transportation too, it’s so quiet apart from people. But the downside is that sometimes because they are so quiet especially on bikes you never know if they are there. But they are also not sure about their surroundings as they sometimes bump into people only to nod a sorry. So be careful especially during rush hours or busy areas.
They want their own space:
People always have the assumption that Japanese people move away from people who are foreigners because they are foreigners. But that’s not it in my opinion. They actually want to be as far away from anyone. Think about when you get on the metro or JR Line. Everyone has the understanding to move down no matter how squashed it gets and no one complains which is more than what can be said in London. But when there is space, everyone goes on the seats at the end rather than the seats in the middle (last time I was in England I saw more people do this). They’d rather be far away from any other person.
That also goes for their belongings, they always put their bags on their lap when sitting or if it’s too heavy, above the seat or by their legs (but rarely in case someone falls before them). And you rarely see them push or stand in front of you to get on public transport just rather push you in the train during the busy times.
There isn’t any roadman in sight:
to people who have not watched U.K media or been to England, To define roadman by urban dictionary, its someone who thoroughly knows the ins and outs of his area, and the people in the area – he will also be involved in popular events such as trapping, driving (cruising), parties etc.. No random people talking loudly about wasteman, playing music out loud, eating chicken and chips on the bus and giving intimating glares. It’s the one of the things I don’t miss about Flopland (formerly known as England prior Brexit) even though I’ve grown up with people like this. London is known for having a very urban and in some parts of the city but some roadman take it to the extreme and think their attitude has to be intimidating in order to get things and some come off looking stupid. Thankfully in Japan, it’s a rarity or at least they have other types of delinquents to deal with.
Piercings aren’t as common:
But other things I’ve come to notice and understand is that piercings are not really a thing here and people are bigger here than you’d think. I was told by one of the kids parents that I babysat if you have piercings for an interview it’s not a good thing. And many Japanese people do not even get the usual ear piercings even when they are young and most do it by themselves (in comparison to my family, when a child is 1-2 years old they get their ears pierced).
Fast food joints are everywhere!:
With the amount of Western brand food and clothes as well as the expansion of fried chicken in Japan, seeing bigger people around is becoming a common thing. Compared to when I went to Japan 8 years ago, it feels like I’m in London again seeing people with different heights and sizes again which I like.