I thought I would share my experience of being a near 6’2 male who is a couple sushi rolls shy of 220 lbs. as I make my way across Japan.
First, In the USA I am not really fat. I am just a little chubby. In Japan, I am enormous. As we walked through Tokyo I came across 2-3 people that were fatter than me. Most everyone seems to be at a very healthy weight. It is much different than our obesity epidemic in America.
Another observation, related to the first, is that 90% of the doorways I walked through I had to watch my head and my girth. It made me feel like a giant. Admittedly, it was pretty cool! Many store fronts often had canopies outside on the side walk. Each canopy hit me right about the nipples. It serious shrunk the size of the sidewalk I was able to use.
Lastly, the bathrooms. Surprisingly, there was a lot to learn. In many restaurants there were doors marked “Men, ”Women”, and “Men/Women”. The “men’s” room consisted of a sink and a urinal. No number 2’s allowed. For that, you had to use the “Men/Women”. I cannot report on the situation of the “Women’s” only, but I can make an assumption. It also came with a tiny sink smaller than the size of my hands. It had ample soap to clean up but no towels. No hand dryers either. Japan seems to value cleanliness, but not dryness. The biggest lesson/surprise/disappointment/fiasco was actually in the small flat were rented through Airbnb. Many small apts. in Asia have a shower/sink/toilet in one tiny room.
The sink will slide to cover the toilet so you can shower and slide back so use can use the toilet (see below). It is shoved into a closet smaller than most broom closets in the states. I quickly realized that I couldn’t close the door and sit on the toilet. This led to very awkward conversations with my wife. “Babe, I need you to stay in the bedroom so I can use the bathroom…with the door open." On top of that, since the floor was always wet from a previous shower I had to take my pants completely off so they wouldn’t get wet while they were around my ankles.
I think the most excited I have been since we got to Japan was when I looked at the picture of the bathroom in the next Airbnb. It looks like a good 6-8 inches larger. My perception of luxury has changed. Now all I need is bathroom I can fit in.