I don't consider myself too picky when it comes to food. I can eat most type of Japanese food, but there are some I will not eat nor try for that matter. Anything that is not cooked and natto, I will not eat. The taste and smell does not go well with one of my taste buds. Sushi is another. I cannot pop anything uncooked into my mouth without gagging. Other than those two described, I love Japanese food. Of course, one can only eat so much of it before their taste buds starts complaining. Since I am not Japanese and I have grown up to hamburgers and hotdogs, I need a change of varity from time to time. Which leads me to another discovery while living in Japan.
I must admit; I have a sweet tooth for any snacks that are tasty. Japan has some of the coolest okashi (snacks) around. The taste is different from your traditional snacks in the USA. For starters, Japanese pastries are not as sweet as compared to that of the US. In addition, Japanese pastries look more like an art rather food. It looks too pretty to consume.
If you have visited Japan in the past or currently living here, you would also agree with me in that Japan's railway system is very convenient & precise to the seconds. No doubt, Tokyo area is heavily populated with people and lands are scarce. Driving around Tokyo is like driving in New York city. It's nearly impossible to get around conveniently not to mention there are no parking spaces. Quickly you will learn that taking the train is your best option to travel around and about Japan. Most of the popular attractions are located within walking distance from the train stations as a matter of fact.
Due to recent earthquake disaster in 3/11, tourisms have dropped significantly. Many vacationers have either cancelled their itineraries or booked their vacation to travel elsewhere. Let me be the first and certainly not the last to say, Japan is still and always will be a safe country to visit or live. To prove my statement correct, Japan government is making plans to give away 10,000 free airline tickets to anyone who 'qualifies.' That's right, FREE. What is the catch? Unfortunately, there are a few, but for a price of a round-trip ticket, minus other expensive, the catch is fairly small.
My first experience when I visited Japan in 1998 was how many liquid vending machines available. There were practically one on every corner of the streets. I can see them on main streets, residential areas and places I never thought there would be one. The available drinks vary. It can contain water, soda, tea, coffee, and energy drinks.