Back in Tokyo

Tokyo has amazing public transport but today all I can see are its flaws.  It’s snowing.  It’s not pleasant outside but it’s ten times worse on the trains.  The trains are always packed in the morning but when it snows they end up fuller because of delays and to avoid the horror of driving in Tokyo when there is snow.  More people, more crushing, and more heat.  The heat is unbearable.  I managed to remove my hat, scarf, and gloves on the platform before getting into the train but that’s not enough.  Within minutes I could feel the sweat trickling down my back.  Trying to remove a coat on a train so full you can barely more your arms is maddening but I actually managed to do that this morning, it was that or pass out.

Mind you, the problem seems to be me.  Everyone else stayed fully clothed as if it was snowing inside the train.  I have no idea how they do it.  I didn’t see anyone else drink water but I carry water in the Japanese summer and winter because both have their own forms of overwhelming heat.  I have considered not wearing so many winter clothes and just deal with the freezing when I’m out walking but I also have to sit in a classroom for hours.  Yesterday during class I was so cold that one of the other students offered me his coat.  Our teacher finally noticed that it’s not normal to wear scarves and gloves in the classroom and had the heating turned up.

Today I have enough clothing to be warm in class, but it’s going to be grim getting back home again.

Heading Home

I’m back in London Heathrow waiting on my flight to Japan.  I did not manage to blog at all while I was in the UK, but then I rarely managed to get online.  The house we were staying in was supposed to have wifi but it broke completely for a few days and when it was “fixed” it was incredibly hard to get connected.  There were a couple of spots – like the second step of the stairs – where it was possible to connect for a minute or so, but it was incredibly frustrating trying to connect and I mostly gave up.  This means that I now have hundreds of unanswered emails.  Joy.

I’m starting back to my Japanese class on Monday morning and I feel horribly unprepared.  I tried to keep on top of the work over the past two weeks but it’s very hard to study when you are trying to do family things and catch up with friends.  I have a feeling that February is going to be a busy month.