Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Now Over To Our Correspondent In Japan

Hello all. It's been a hard week in the Bear Ears household. Connor's grandfather passed away, so he made a quick trip out to Kentucky for the funeral before coming back, spending a day with me, then jetting out to Japan for a three week business trip. His brother Mason is joining him out there, which I am thankful for. Mason has been diligently studying Japanese, which is helping Connor out a bunch. Meanwhile, I'm holding the fort down, seeing the occasional doctor, and also helping Scooter out after he had his surgery to remove several troublesome fatty tumors. (It turned out one was wrapped around his jugular vein, so it is good he got the surgery.)

Connor and I have been able to talk over the phone, which is great. We were actually speaking to each other during the big earthquake that hit Japan. (Somewhere between a 6.9 to 7.4 depending who is reporting.) He wasn't too close to the epicenter, but he was in his tall hotel building at the time and the swaying really worried him. Luckily he is safe. He sent me this amusing email and has given me permission to share. So today's post comes from Connor in Japan.

Connor:
This is our hotel, one of the tallest building in Japan, and certainly the tallest in Yokohama. Our room is on the 54th floor, which puts us in the top “thirdrant” (a new Masonism; think quadrant). We were swaying pretty hard during the earthquake, but Mason wasn’t worried because he read that our hotel was equipped with “tuned mass dampers” just for this kind of thing.

These are 1 yen pieces, worth less than a penny. They are so light weight, they have to be hollow and probably float on water. Mason went on for a good 5 minutes boasting about how he would never pick one up off the street. Later in the evening one of these fell out of his pocket and he panicked in case it had been a 5 yen piece.

Our bathroom is very weird. See exhibits A, B and C.

Exhibit A: There is an area of the bathroom mirror that never fogs after a shower.

Exhibit B: Our high-tech toilet.

The controls of our high-tech toilet. The seat temperature is regulated, so it always has the feel that someone just used it right before you.

Exhibit C: Our bathroom’s volume dial. What does this go to?! The toilet? Mason’s answer: "The speakers, of course.” Why does our bathroom need speakers?!

We found a noodle shop where we didn’t have to speak to anyone to order. You put your money in the machine and push a button that corresponds to your order, and out pops a ticket that you hand to the waitress.

Mason is looking forward to this snack he found at 7/11. We call it the “noodle dog”.

Thanks for your observations of Japan, Connor.!I'm looking forward to hearing more about it.

4 comments :

kiwiyarns said...

I'm sorry to hear about Conor's grandfather. I send my wholehearted condolences. And I am very glad to hear that Conor was ok in that quake! Sounds like Japanese buildings are built a bit better than NZ ones...! Very amusing post from Conor. :-)

Jennifer said...

Sincere condolences for Connor's grandfather. And the earthquake with the building swaying sounds terrifying! I have recurring nightmares about being in a tall building that is swaying. The noodle dog looks disgusting and the bathroom sounds very strange, but a thoroughly entertaining email! I hope your doctor's appointments are yielding helpful if not optimistic information.

woollenwilderness said...

So sorry to hear about Conor's grandfather, but glad that all is safe in Japan. Those pictures are definitely bringing back memories to my trip there a couple years back, especially that high tech toilet :D

Alicia said...

So sorry about Connor's grandfather. :( His email was amusing and a trip to Japan sounds exciting, earthquakes and all. Glad he's safe!

"so it always has the feel that someone just used it right before you."
That would not make me happy.

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