ONE month has passed since I arrived here in Tokyo and I feel like I can almost say I fell in love with this big city. This big and c...

ONE month has passed since I arrived here in Tokyo and I feel like I can almost say I fell in love with this big city. This big and crowded, colorful and inspirational city that seems to be never asleep. I spend some days just strolling around the streets of Shibuya and Harajuku and even though I still feel like "Tourist-Mi", I somehow found a certain routine in daily life. For example the routes and streets I walk and the trains I take to get me from a to b. The little shops and convenience stores I frequent and along with that the familiar faces of the cashiers and staff members. The people in my neighbourhood and even some shortcuts I figured out. However, I will never get used to Tokyo's heatwaves; still killing it. Of course, there are some negative aspects as well, but maybe in another blog post.

Here are some 5 random facts:

1. You get plastics bags en masse and for free. Be it at the supermarket, convenience stores or even for your umbrella. Yupp, you heard me - for your umbrella. You put it in one of these long plastic bags you will mostly find at every entrance of a store or cafe after it got soaked.

2. "" (daijobudesu) is one of the generally used words in everyday life in Japan. I stopped counting how often I use it per day, and especially when walking through Shibuya...

3. The louder the better ?! One of the things I will never understand is how people manage to enjoy shopping in a store where all the female staff members are shouting like crazy in their high-pitched voice. It is a total mess. Basically, besides from welcoming and thanking the customer for having shopped, they present their newest arrivals and all their current sales offer. You'll often find this in single stores or in a mall where it is more competitive. (I'll try and make some recording)

4. You take off your shoes when you enter the fitting rooms. (except for stores like H&M or ZARA which are globally present).

5. I admit, I am one of those people who get really intrigued by interesting and colorful and well-designed packagings. Be it candy, drugstore products or even the bottles of a softdrink. If I am standing in front of the many many vending machines spread all through Tokyo, and I cannot decide which drink to buy, I most likely end up buying one by judging it by its cover. If the packaging is nice, you got me ! Japan specifically, must be as equally in love with packagings and wrappings as I am because they make sure that cookies and candies for example are each individually wrapped and then again put into another big bag. As a result, we produce a massive amount of waste.

6. BUT there are no public trash cans. On one of my first days in Tokyo, I found myself struggling and desperately searching for a trash can half an hour to throw away my chewing gum. I ended up wrapping it in paper and recycling it at home because I massively failed in finding one. There simply are no trash cans in the public area but then again you will always find a container next to the vending machines for the empty PET bottles and cans, duh.

Photos taken by Robert Kirsch

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