I’ve been slowly picking up some Japanese. Yesterday morning I learned the symbols for locked and unlocked. These were printed on the shower door. Later that day, when I was wandering through a government building I came to a large sliding glass door with a note entirely written in Japanese, but I saw that on of the symbols was “locked”. Ah ha! This note must mean that I can’t get out this door, I thought to myself. Now all I need is 2999 more charaters and I will be able to read!
After running around on the local metro, I think I’ve got a pretty good handle on the train system. Of course, I’ve been on several train systems, so in some ways it’s familar turf, but still, the Japanese throw an intersting twist on it by making a twisting labrynth out of the stations and then packing them with twice as many people as I’ve ever seen in a train station.
I’m also gotten used to buying things. I inflicted my first two experences, on the staff, but now I understand that tax is included in the price. Now if I could just understand the rapidly spoken price. I’m glad that cash registers display this stuff.
Today I leave Ikebukuro for Sapporo. By the time people back home are waking up, I will be freezing by butt off in the distant north.