Time for one of the obligatory “oh my god Japanese summer is so hot” posts. Because it is so (expletive deleted) hot! Seriously, summer here is probably one of the worst experiences a foreigner can have on this little island. I guess the heat is fairly comparable to everywhere else I’ve lived, but the humidity really does you in. On top of that, you walk a lot more here than in the US, and even trains and stations aren’t always that great on the climate control. This, of course, means that when you arrive at work in the morning, you already have the sweat and stench of someone who just ran the Boston Marathon. That is, if the Boston Marathon took place on the sun.
The humid conditions outside make commuting or even just stepping outside a chore, and with my new hour+ long journey to get to work in the morning, the first leg of my day is usually the worst. I’ve quickly adapted to the Japanese salaryman routine of wearing a short-sleeve business shirt and carrying my jacket folded over my arm/briefcase. On the train I alternate between sleeping and using a fan while looking like I could pass out at any moment. I also have gotten really good at hurriedly putting on my tie either right before my stop on the train or in the bathroom of my office lobby. There is also the constant search for a seat on the crowded trains, which I was going to write about when I realized I already have.
Thankfully my office is nice and air-conditioned, meaning once I actually get to work and cool off with my Dragonball fan, I’m good to go. It’s just the coming and going that’s a pain, because the sun and humidity turn the Tokyo streets into a wavy, brightly-lit wasteland that I try to avoid as much as possible. At night, the temperature goes down considerably (maybe a whole degree even), but the humidity remains. With any luck, summer should start transitioning into fall by mid-September, meaning life will be about 50% less painful, and I’ll just have the constant lack of sleep left to worry about.