Last post, Ang wrote about all the internal organs we come across in Japan. She failed to mention all the external organs we see, so that’s where I step in. We’re yin and yang like that.
A friend invited us to a resort town in the mountains last weekend to escape the Tokyo heat. So nice. Super nice. And then super naked.
Japan has more hot springs than McDonald’s. I don’t know if that’s true, but you’re the one on the internet. Look it up. Any resort town worth its seaweed salt has onsen in the hotels, or an onsen park, or a hike with an outdoor onsen. They are very enjoyable. But to enjoy them, you have to be very nude. Nude-ish won’t cut it.
When I go to a gym, I’m a fairly modest guy. I don’t shower in my clothes or anything like that, but I don’t do naked lunges to dry off either (I’m talking to you, every old man at a gym ever). I move briskly. Disrobe, robe, go. People are in various states of dress, and that’s the part that throws me off. If there’s a room full of people, and some are dressed and some aren’t, I know which group I want to be in. It’s definitely not the group with the guy in just his socks.
But at the onsen, evvvvverybody is naked. More naked than possible. Don’t tell me zero divided by zero has no solution. I’ve seen the wrinkled answer.
Three generations of a family get naked as quickly as possible, shower, and then continue being naked in scalding water. If people get too hot, they hop out of the onsen and sit on the edge. For those of us still half-submerged in the pool, that puts us at eye level to a lot of person. It’s like staring at a celtic ring. So many twists and knots, but with flesh.
Then everyone stands around to cool down, grandpa does some lunges, they dress and leave. And it’s fine, because you can’t be caught in a compromising position if everything has already been compromised. That’s logic.
I just have one comment to yesterday’s and today’s post:
p.s. um, didn’t intend for an emoticon to accompany that comment.
although I was smiling when i hit “submit”
This means I don’t even have to pack my bathing suit. Body shame, here I come! Yeehaw!
Did they make you put the washcloth on your head too? My favorite part was the kindergarten size stools on which one had to sit while showering.
I guess my previous post’s title could apply to this one, too …
I mostly see the old guys put the washcloth on the head. The hip kids just throw the washcloth on the side and then roll their eyes.
Looks like McDonalds might win. I found 3,598 Mickey D’s, according to Nation Master. Onsen were harder to pin down with lots of throw-away numbers ranging from 2,000 to 27,000 (which I find a little dubious). But the best-sourced number was 3,100 from Japan’s Ministry of the Environment. So it looks like the onsen come in just under McDonald’s.
But I know which one I’d rather be naked in.
You win today’s Internet. You can pick up your prize by downloading anything you want illegally.
Awesome. I’d download a pony, but I’m not allowed pets…
I’m sure the Japanese are modest people too. They have eons of generations of naked bathing, so it’s nothing to them. It does leave us ‘aliens’ in a bit of a pickle. I hope you enjoyed your bath, even with all the looking away. At least you did not have some unknown person washing you.
Sounds like I gotta get me to Japan!