Film at 11

Yesterday I went on a second Onsen trip with my host parents. This trip was infinitely better than the first, touristy one last weekend.

We traveled first to probably the single more beautiful place in Japan I've been to. I realized that despite planning otherwise the night before, I'd forgotten my camera.


Thankfully, Hiro had a cheap EZCam with him, which takes pictures the old fashioned way. You know, that crazy film stuff loonies like my sister use because they're artsy? Pssh, digital age go!

I bought postcards there, sporting some of the nice views, which I will send out to select people.

The wind there was something else. I enjoyed it, my host parents commented on how I must have ice in my blood, as it was certainly not warm out and the wind coming off the ocean wasn't either. I was too busy taking my mind off my camera and trying to enjoy the beautiful sights.

After that, we went to the Onsen, and I'll tell you that for the second time I found that being naked around a bunch of other naked people isn't too big of a deal, although I still gave myself plenty of personal space. I explained to Hiro that in America we do not have hotsprings and public baths like this. Partly because Americans are uptight about the whole "naked with everyone you know" thing, and partly because the number of volcanicly active areas is quite small, meaning such baths would require artificial heating, which in turn would be expensive.

The Onsen was outdoors, and had another great view of the ocean. It was an excellent experience. It was not without a lack of strangers either. This was an apartment building trip, meaning all the neighbors were there. I got a lot of comments concerning my remarkable skill with chopsticks, my good manners, and my ability to eat a great variety of Japanese foods (including raw fish).

Yesterday was also the first day I showered three times in one day. Once before getting into the Onsen, once before getting into the Onsen a second time after a visit to the Sauna, and a third time before returning to the world of fully clothed people.

In retrospect, the title is in reference to my lack of a camera, and not to taking any pictures of naked people, although three guys there had a picture taken from behind of them looking out to the ocean, one hand each raised in a victorious pose. It was funny to watch.

If any of you come to Japan, go to an Onsen, it is a really nice experience (especially after a lot of Kendo, your muscles will praise you).

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