After a week of surprising my best pal in China- we zipped off to Japan, which quickly became my favorite place in the entire world. It was beyond special. I had zero expectations but it’s clear the Japanese have life figured out. For so, so many reasons.
During my 7 day stint, my digestive system was on point. While gluten free is now the latest trend, the Japanese have clearly known this all along. RICE, RICE, and MORE RICE people! It’s the #1 ingredient to everything they make, down to their sweets, treats, and candy. Which, by the way is inclusive of Green Tea Macha flavored Kit Kats. I am all for natural food – but this is a no joke. Even their ice cream was made with macha.
The bathroom situation. Every toilet seat was heated – including in their malls and on public transportation. Those power packed pottys had automatic seat controls to lift and shut the lid, tushy wash, noise makers to sound like running water to help you go AND mask your own noise, and to top it off disinfecting wipes to clean the seat before the next person. This was bathroom heaven, if there ever was one.
On the contrary, Japanese style toilets called “squat toilets” were also an option – which clearly I had to try. At first I felt like a drunk teen going to the bathroom on someone’s floor. Typically you’d have the option of your 5 star toilet experience, or the old school Japanese style. Takes us back to our primal routes where you had to squat to go to the bathroom; which is how our bodies are actually designed for optimal function. See directions below, and caution to work your squats before trying – or you will fall in.
The freshest fish experience. Fish, rice, fish, rice. My diet for 7 days.
Everything from eating, drinking tea, or handing my receipt over after a purchase was a well thought out work of art. There was such a level of respect in all transactions. Swallow this – someone wearing a mask can be doing so because they feel ill, and do not want to make YOU sick. The considerate nature was unlike anything I’ve seen.
Of course I bought these masks in bulk -best item I purchased the entire trip… and sometimes I like to fit in.
The most adorable pig tails I’ve ever seen. Pig tails are very much in style amongst the youth. I rocked this look my entire childhood and good lord it melted my heart. Each little piggy at a time…
FRIENDS WHO TOP KNOT TOGETHER, STAY TOGETHER.
My new Geisha friends. Definition: traditional Japanese female entertainers who act as hostesses and whose skills include performing various arts such as classical music, dance, games and conversation, mainly to entertain male customers.
The culture in Kyoto is still very much alive, with women wearing traditional Kimonos in everyday life, passing this tradition down to their daughters. It was beautiful to see. As we roamed the temples, many girls were dressed up, along with their lady gang of friends. The city of Kyoto offers local discounts to women wearing a Kimono, encouraging women to keep the culture intact. This inevitably comes with my favorite combo of socks and sandals.
The temples. My favorite and one of the most significant facts; Japan is a country with no religious separation. Whether you’re Buddhist, Shinto or other – everyone was welcome to every temple. There was fluidity between both beliefs and a general sense of oneness. Helloooo can we all follow suit?
While on my endless spiritual journey, I opted for an ancient Japanese palm reading. We had a translator with us for this experience. In a nutshell, I’m going to live a long life, and I’m stubborn.
The Bamboo Forest of Kyoto and the Plum Gardens of Osaka were two of the most gorgeous walks in nature.
And lastly, I felt I had died and woke up in a Chihuahua farm. I’m still not sure what the obsession or significance with Chihuahuas was…so if anyone does know please do share. It was almost like they knew I was coming…
Till next time Japan… I loved every minute of you! xo