My mother just wrote me asking me to hurry up and write another blog. She asked for an astute observation of Japanese culture. Instead I will share a weird story about Japanese culture. This past weekend I went to a frisbee tournament right near Mt. Fuji. There was a really nice view of the mountain right from the fields where we were playing. The entire team stayed at a Ryokan, which is a traditional Japanese kind of hotel. They have roll out beds and serve amazing meals for breakfast and dinner. The weird part of the story has to do with the bathing situation at this Ryokan, where they had a Sento.
A Sento is a large communal bath. It is essential a giant hot tub, with showers along the outer rim. I went down to take a shower and when I got there I was not alone. I essentially showered with a 70 year old man and about five 8-year old boys. To Japanese people a Sento is great place to go and relax, they are completely normal. The whole experience was pretty weird to me at first, but after a while I just accepted it as another cultural experience here in Japan!