Saturday, April 13, 2013

Japanese way of doing things

More than anything it is the way doing things which astonishes a visitor in a foreign land. I too had my share of surprises.

Distance measured in time : I did not find anywhere how much is the distance between various places in the city. Instead, everyone was indicating the time it would take to reach any place. Forget people, there was not a sign board in roads where distance was written. Quite clearly, it indicates what Japanese respect most - time. On a professional front, it translates to every minute in a day being accounted for some task or the other.

Cleanliness : Every street and corner was neat and clean. Though this is a general observation in many developed countries, I was informed by my friend that Japan is much cleaner than US and most other developed countries. Though I could only find a cigarette butt thrown in a sky walk which was an exception. I was trying to compare the situation in India. In India, people who litter in public are more but in Japan more people keep their city clean. What I also observed that people who had flu or cold would wear masks when they are in public places. What way to take care of health of fellow citizens.

Metro is underground and accessible from every corner of the city : Tokyo metro is completely underground and there is a different world operating beneath earth - with people commuting and super markets, restaurants and what not. Tokyo metro is accessible every corner of the city and more often than not all tourist spots are at walking distances from metro stations. Some times, this takes away the thrill of exploring new places. Also, metro is the most economic way of transport in this expensive city of Japan.

Love for their mother tongue and culture : Though you can live in Tokyo without knowing Japanese as everywhere you find English along with Japanese - in announcements and in sign boards. But not everyone speaks English and even if they speak, it lasts few sentences and all the executive meetings involving foreign delegates involve translators. Even the power point presentations would be in English as well as in Japanese. In a way, they are preserving their language in a global economy and also make sure people who know Japanese find employment wherever information is conveyed in Japanese. Being a modern industrialized nation, Japan has not forgotten its roots - historical monuments are well preserved and ancient traditions are still revered and followed. Apart from that, Japanese people are very friendly and gentle to foreigners.

Influenced by American culture : Though I said Japanese culture is alive and thriving, you can also find youth in their fancy American attire, hairstyles and makeup. So, you find both extremes in Japan. Consumerism is at its peak in Japan too and you would be amazed how you would become an impulsive buyer when you are in Japan just as I felt.

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts with Thumbnails