The Mister splurged last time he went out to the Navy base, and *somehow* we ended up with a Wii U. I’ve been telling myself that once I have a day where I know there is nothing timely or important I need to do, I’m allowed to set up said Wii U, because I know once it’s set up I won’t get off the couch for the remainder of said day/ week/ month.
I decided that today is that day.
So I got up and had my coffee, then went on my errand run, because I knew I was home for the day once that box was opened. A quick trip to the mall to grab cat food and, me food, then back to the apartment for fun. I was disgustingly sweaty, so first I took a shower.
I got the system mostly set up when I realized that because we have so many gaming systems/ stuff plugged into our TV (we’re just big children, The Mister and I), we were going to need an HDMI splitter in order to finish this project. This would have been less annoying if I hadn’t already been out, or if we had an electronics store in the mall that is actually near-ish to our house. We don’t, so I walked to the train station, got on a train and went out to a bigger mall a few stops away. I found the splitter (seriously though? gold star to me, that’s a tough one in another language), purchased it, paused briefly at the pet store to coo at the puppies in the window, and then caught the train back home. Once there, I was disgustingly sweaty, so I took a shower.
I took the splitter out of the box, and realized it didn’t come with an output cable. So I can plug my multiple HDMI cables INTO it, but then there isn’t a cable to go from splitter to the TV. Here is about when I got SUPER cranky and debated not finishing my project. But we have plans to go to the base this weekend, and since it’s an American Wii U (Japanese Wii U’s are not compatible with American -aka English language- games and vise-versa), if we had any issues with it I wanted to know ahead of time so we could address them while we’re at the Navy commissary where it was originally purchased. Thus, I put on my big girl panties and walked the couple miles to another smaller electronics store to buy an HDMI output cable. It has a little face on it, because Japan. I believe it is mocking me.
Once I got back to my building, I shared the elevator up with a nice little old lady (we call them Oba-sans -basically “grannies"- here), and she said… something to me in Japanese. I didn’t know exactly what, both because I didn’t understand the words and also because I had my headphones on. Still, I got the gist that she was saying something about me specifically, assumed that because she is a nice-looking little lady that she was saying something kind, and so I bowed and told her thank you.
Once inside the apartment, I realized that this time not only was I disgustingly sweaty, but I’d forgotten deodorant the last time around, so I stunk like a bad Peppy Le Pew reenactment. I’ve been wondering all afternoon if the Oba-san was trying to tell me I was an unholy level of ripe. So. I took a shower.
And then, because I’d finally come to the end of a day spent toiling over something so silly as setting up a singular electronic gaming system, I treated myself to a bath.
Baths in Japan are really something else, and truth be told, I wasn’t a convert until just a few weeks ago. Actually, let’s back that up; Japanese bathROOMS are really something else.
Back when I was taking my language lessons in the states, our tutor was amazing enough to throw in a few culture lessons as well. One of those revolved around bathrooms, and more specifically, how bathrooms and toilet rooms are 2 separate things here. Our tutor was originally from Japan and had married an American man, and in one of her more adorable moments in our lessons she explained how she missed the separation of these spaces:
“I hate when I am in the shower, and my husband must come in and use the toilet! Then I am showering in the fumes from his pee! I cannot be clean when I have washed in pee fumes!”
You see, in Japan, homes have a room that houses JUST the toilet, which, as we’ve already covered, is usually a very fancy bidet and is amazing in it’s own right. Then there is a vanity space that has a sink and is generally where people get themselves gussied up for the day. And next to that is the room for the bath. This room is an amazing space, set up with a space for showering, a bathtub for once you’re clean,* and the fancy ones (like ours) include a little control panel which can be used for the following (and more):
- Heat the room with warm air - which we use for drying our laundry instead of hanging it outside and having the wind take my undergarments three doors down.
- Circulate the air with a “breeze”
- Run yourself a bath, at the temperature of your choosing. (seriously. One button. it fills the bathtub, and then a little voice resonates throughout the apartment to tell you it’s ready)
- Reheat the bathwater
- Add more water to the bath, or drain it.
- “Page” your spouse if you’re in the tub and you need something and you’re too lazy to get out.
I love that I no longer have to shower in “pee fumes.” I love how fancy I feel in the super deep tub that I can keep warm for hours. And I love the amazing range of stuff that Japanese stores sell for you baths.
Specifically: Bath Bombs. And I'll be honest, I might have a bit of a problem.
The dollar stores here sell Bath Bombs by the truck load. To me, the best part about them is that many of them have TINY TOYS INSIDE. Like Pokémon, I have to catch them all. Hence, my overflowing basket of bath bombs with everything from Hello Kitty summer toys, to tiny dinosaurs, Snoopy characters, sea creatures, hamsters, and more!
How is that not the cutest thing you've ever seen?
Or at least the cutest thing you've ever bought for a dollar.
How about this one? It's PINEAPPLE scented!
And I got a tiny Lucy from Snoopy! I mean, it turned my bath water pee-yellow, but guys, tiny Lucy!
And lookit how many more Snoopy characters I can collect!
An excessive amount of bath-bomb toys? I think not!
Plus guys, check out the "Dolphin Boat" I recently purchased, which runs on... you guessed it, the fizzes of bath bombs.
Are you an adult who acts like a child?
In what way?
Tell me in the comments!
today's little language lesson
Watashi no furo oke wa painappuru no yōna nioi.
My bathtub smells like pineapple.
*Baths are not part of getting clean in Japan - they’re a way to relax, an activity. Many families will share the same bath water one after another, and or they’ll reuse the bathwater to clean their laundry (our washing machine has a separate hose to accommodate this should we be so inclined). What I’m saying is you don’t get in the bath and scrub off a bunch of dirt into the water, or shave your legs. You get in once you’re already primped and polished.