It's hot outside! I'll say this every single summer in Japan, but it's June and it's hot.
I'm still in partial 'tourist mode'. So many things I haven't seen or done yet. Summer is meant to be a great time for doing all that stuff. The sun's out, the sky is clear, the trees and hills look amazing. Except it's bloody hot, and that is less great.
The heat of a Japanese summer makes staying inside all day, or even at home, real tempting. Wandering around in direct sunlight gets painful. You can feel yourself sizzling, no matter how much Factor 50 you slap on.
If you're a bit overcooked, finding some help is easy. The 100-yen stores are packed with hand fans and UV-protecting arm/neck covers. I have 3 fans - one at home, one at the office, one in my bag. You can never be too careful.
Not everything helps, though. Trains are chilled to fridge temperatures. When it's hot enough to leave the house with bare legs and shoulders, that chill is unbearable.
So I'm in a pickle. I want to be out and about this summer. But I got in from a morning of exploring, had a quick lie down in a cool room, and I didn't want to get back up. It was lovely. The exploring was cool, but the cool was cooler.
Some summer-related Japanese ads show people lying comfortably on their living room floor. In the middle of the day, and for the rest of the day. With the sliding door wide open, looking out onto a beautiful garden. Wind chime tinkling away. Glass of cold green tea on the table.
It looks like bliss, and it probably is. Until you wake up a few hours later, it's dark, and you realise you spent a glorious afternoon asleep. Bugger. You're not getting that afternoon back.
That's my problem - what's better? Getting outside for fresh air and Vitamin D but melting after a few hours, or avoiding sunburn AND social interactions?
Is it a waste of a beautiful day to spend it lazing around at home?