I was sitting outside a coffee shop the other morning in Tokyo and noticed this pretty young women pull up with a small child on her bicycle. When she got off the bike she ensured the bike was secure and then lovingly checked on the sleeping baby who was in a baby seat. She went inside the coffee shop leaving her baby on the bike near a table where people frequently passed by. I’ve observed this and many other similar situations throughout my two weeks in Tokyo! It’s fascinating that in the US we would not have tolerated leaving a sleeping child in a stroller, bike, car, you name it; as a Mom we are in constant fear that someone will take our child.
Japan is a pretty amazing country with highly advanced technology and old fashioned
values. I ride the subways daily and noticed there are no garbage cans, the waiting areas are scrubbed clean with no debris, the subway cars are extremely clean, people are quiet they do not talk on their phones although they will text. No pushing, no shoving, no arguing, no loud voices– its all pretty calm. They seem to have additional help everywhere, therefore no waiting in lines and people take a lot of pride in their work.
Today I am leaving Tokyo to go home, its been a great visit and a wonderful way to heal. I was thinking how quickly we adapt to new situations, when I first arrived in Tokyo it was daunting– everything was different; the language, reading the directions, driving on the opposite side of the road, navigating the rail system and new areas. Within two weeks I feel comfortable– I know the subway system, I can virtually go anywhere and know I will find my way back. In addition, few people speak English however I have learned to manage asking questions in a universal way.
With all of that said, I miss home. I miss feeling like I am part of a community, eating the foods I enjoy, seeing my friends, and getting back to my daily schedule. I will miss my son Cory, its such a gift to share this time with him and see how he lives his life. He has flourished in this environment and I am very proud of him! Grateful I could share this time with him.