Winter is near

It’s getting colder here in Nagano, which means Japanese people have gone from wearing their summer sweaters (have you ever heard this term before in your life?) to wearing 7-8 layers of clothing.  For the record, the temperature is around 50-55 degrees F most days.  Some days it gets up to 60.  For C users this is roughly 12-14 according to my cell phone unit converter.

Yes, Japanese people are the coldest people I’ve ever encountered in my life.  On 90 degree days in the summer it’s entirely common to see people walking around with jackets on saying it’s a bit chilly out.  Coming from Minnesota this really blows my mind.  Check that.  Coming from the human species this really blows my mind.  Over my time here this has actually gone from a peculiar thing to something that bugs me a great deal.  There’s something about being THAT cold in mild weather that just can’t actually be a reality.  I have started to come to the conclusion that in their overwhelming desire to fit in with each other they have all tricked themselves into psychosomatically feeling cold at all times.  There’s no reason that almost to a person an entire country of people should all be so ill-equipped to handle weather below 95 degrees.  This all makes sense if you’re from Jamaica or Mexico.  But these are people who have lived their entire lives in a part of Japan that sees snow every year.  How have you not grown accustomed to it yet?

In other news I think I’m going to start my search for snowboarding gear this weekend.  I’ve heard reports of people getting full gear (read: the least you need to attempt to snowboard) for around $50.  I can manage that.  I’m located in what is considered possibly the best snowboarding region in the entire country.  There are a handful of very popular tourist destinations specifically for snowboarding all within a 20 minute drive from me.  It’s also very rare to meet Japanese people in this area that don’t snowboard in the winter.  So, I figure I owe it to myself to give snowboarding a chance.

Did I mention I’m from Minnesota?  Did I also mention I’ve never skied once in my life, and only snowboarded 3 times.  The last time of which was about 20 years ago?  I wonder what selective company that puts me in.  I also wonder if you count that I studied Ancient Greek in college would the number in that group increase or decrease?

 

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