The other day, I went with my friend Scouser Ste to Ōedo Onsen –a hot spring in the futuristic Tokyo Bay area.
Now, you may or may not know that Japanese people love hot springs –and with good reason too. They’re pretty freakin’ fantastic! They are soooo relaxing. Now what, you may say, is relaxing about hanging out naked in a pool of boiling water with a bunch of other naked people? Well, the first time I ever went to an onsen (in a remote village south-west of Tokyo on holiday with Jase), I was pretty skeptical about the whole thing. As we were paying to get in, I became mildly alarmed. Then as we were getting undressed; rather panicked. As we went from the change-room to the onsen-room; wholly embarrassed. Then, about ten seconds later,.. everything became perfectly normal. I mean, it’s pretty hard to be embarrassed about being naked when everyone else is naked too, right?
I know some of my dear readers become despondent at the thought of even a swimsuit, much less the full monty. But really, hang-ups like that are just silly –especially when you consider that nine out of ten people are flabbier, wrinklier and harrier than you, whilst you are young and vivacious. I recommend anyone with said hang-ups to visit an onsen post haste to cure themselves, as I did, in less than a minute. Next stop: Hanlan’s Point –haha.
Onsens are Oji-san (old man) Central, so the whole thing is rather un-sexy in case you were wondering. Just hanging out, relaxing in pools of varying levels of hotness, letting time slide by.
The Ōedo Onsen is particularly nice because you get a lovely yukata (cotton kimono) to wear around the common area, which is done up like a turn-of-the-century Tokyo street market. You get a microchip bracelet that you use to pay for everything like food, beer and souvenirs, which made me feel very futuristic. All in all, at top-notch time! Thanks Scouser Ste.