Well readers, it's Monday.
So, in continuation of last weeks blog, I will discuss some things for those of you who want to come to Japan for just a few weeks or months.
There are tons of websites and blogs about places to go and things to see, so I won't talk about that.
First of all, money.
Obviously, the longer you are planning to stay, the more you need. Unless you really know your way around and the ins and outs of super markets and such, you can expect to spend about 1000 yen (about 12 dollars I think) per meal. If you can/want to cook it yourself, then the cost will be much lower.
Here are some dos and don'ts.
Try to learn some of the language. Being a tourist, of course no one expects you to be fluent. But, being the 'English Tourist' really turns a lot of people off. (Japan is famous in Asia for its horrendous English. See below)
Respect the places and people. This may seem obvious, but TONS of foreigners come here and act like this country is their playground. The people are not here to make your life better of serve you in any way. Because you are American/White/Black/Western whatever, you are NOT above them in any way. Please, for all our sakes, act like a guest and not like you are doing a B&E.
Dress nicely. Depending on your country of origin, your sense of fashion may be casual (like USA) or stylish (like Italy). There are special words they have here for foreigner tourists who dress like they don't know how to use a mirror. So PLEASE, dress nicely. No socks in the sandals, don't pull your socks up to your knees, etc. To be honest, wearing a dress shirt all the time (tie is optional of course) will make you fit in better. Trust me, it may be a casual vacation for you, but in Japan dressing nicely all the time is part of the culture. Leave the t-shirts and Walmart Jeans at home.
BE QUIET!! Foreigners speaking loudly on trains and stuff is one of the biggest pet peeves of Japanese people. Talking on trains and buses is fine, but do it like you're telling a secret about everyone on the train. Or, pretend they can understand you. In Tokyo, everyone hates everyone, so they just want to stay quiet. Do the same, please. (Well, you don't have to hate everyone, but you get what I mean)
Cause trouble at Tsukiji Fish Market. Every year they have to close it to foreigners (which means white and black people only, of course. Pfft...) because some douche bags are riding the transportation vehicles, touching the fish, causing general trouble. I would recommend staying away from there anyway, but if you have some kind of fish fetish or something, stay completely silent, DON'T TAKE PICTURES!! and be respectful.
Look like a douche. Your long unwashed unkept hair is NASTY!! Cut it or take care of it. (Nothing wrong with long hair, but if you just wash it with shampoo and them let it hang on your head like a dead animal, then stay home. We don't what your kind here).
Expect everyone (or anyone for that matter) to speak English. They won't. If you stay at a high grade hotel, then they might. If you go to tourist places, they may speak a word or two. But, asking people on the street for directions in English is like sucking on a urinal cake. It's not fun and gets you no where. That is why at the beginning I told you to learn Japanese. Just a few phrases is fine, but I HIGHLY recommend it.
So, here is a small list of some do's and don'ts. I will expand on it in the coming weeks as I talk about living in Japan and staying here for a long time.
Until then, stay frosty!