Hello everyone! This is Clement from Westcoast.
I have recently returned from a two week family vacation to Asia, and had the pleasure of spending a week in Japan! I will be starting a new series on the top 5 experiences I had while I was there, and today, we will be talking about living spaces, down sizing and first impressions of Japan!
In Vancouver, many people read about Asian homes being smaller. But reading about it isn’t quite the same as living in one!
My family had the chance to live in a Japanese style apartment while I was in Tokyo, and the experience is different even compared to apartments at home! Even in small studio apartments, there are usually two rooms, a bedroom and a den or kitchen area. Apartments in Japan are compact, with as many things put into one place as possible. The kitchen, bathroom and shower are all located in the same general space, with the rest of the apartment taken up by a bedroom. Trying to fit five people plus all their luggage into such a small space is an adventure, without a doubt!
Not only are living spaces smaller, but streets are also much narrower than in Vancouver. It is definitely a change to be able to walk across streets and lanes in less time than it takes at home, and the fact that there are so many people who can walk these narrower streets at the same time is amazing! It is quite a different experience from Vancouver, where streets are very wide and there’s plenty of space to move around people. It’s very different, and a new experience!
Those are just some of the impressions of Tokyo after I first arrived. There are many other, smaller details, however. Many of my family members commented on how polite and helpful people are, and how patient they were dealing with a large group with only one person who was able to speak Japanese. Tokyo, with its electronic screens, billboards and flashing signs was also a new experience for my family members who have never been there before, and myself as well! The first day in Tokyo was just enough to give us some impressions of what the next four days would be like, and we will be talking about highlights from those days in following articles!