Frozen; Japan

I haven’t blogged in a while, and that’s because I have been distracted. One if my most active blogging times is at school when they inevitable give me too much free time between lessons. My schedule has been either very busy or wonderfully condensed. Anyways, on to the show:

530 wake up. I have set the heater to turn on at about 5 so it isn’t freezing cold when I get up. I mean freezing cold in a literal sense too. The kitchen is so cold that my olive oil looks like frozen orange juice. The shampoo in the shower has become this thick gel, and I have to soak my Dr. Bonners magic soap for a few minutes in hot water to be able to use it. The heat is only in the bed room, so once I open the door, I am hit with a frigid blast of cold air.

Once I arrive to school, the teachers room is cool, but they have large, very new a/c units that they are using. The students have just hauled out the kerosene heaters which are a little too powerful. Those rooms can be like sweat boxes at times, and the room is flooded with fumes. It gets so bad at times that the windows have to be opened so the students don’t become asphyxiated, and it gets cold rapidly… So they fire up the heater again…. That cycle all day.

Going to the bathroom at school is a harrowing experience. First of all, the bathrooms here smell like outhouses and they open the windows to let all that out. So sitting on the toilet seat is really really cold. When you go to wash your hands, the water is freezing cold. The schools do not heat their water so it feels like your hands are being assaulted by a thousand needles.

Public areas in Japan don’t really understand comfortable temperatures. In the winter time the heaters are like blast furnaces. The train line has seat heaters which are turned up way too high (my ass starts sweating after about 5 minutes). I found that before I go out, I really have to plan on where I will be. If I am going inside for most of the day, I will wear something light and just endure the time I am outside. It’s not that the Japanese are thin skinned either… They blast cold air during the summer… I actually enjoy that though.

There are nice things about winter here though… The food is at it’s best and I really don’t need to use the fridge for anything…. Left the milk out? No problem.

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This is my half frozen olive oil.. midday, so its a little thawed out…

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