Japanese Quality of Life: My Family’s Experience in Tokyo

Japanese Quality of Life: My Family’s Experience in Tokyo

Hello world I often get asked: How’s life in Japan? What I think they’re really asking is what is the quality of life like. I live in Tokyo the biggest metropolitan area in the world. It’s got to be a hectic life, right? The easiest answer I can give is: I bought a house. There’s a lot that factors into quality of life: health, family, education environment, social belonging, recreation and leisure time and a bunch of financial stuff that influences the cost and standard of living. I will focus on the financials in a follow-up video. But let me address it briefly at the start of this one: Working professionals can afford to buy a home and have all their primary needs taken care of. An extravagant lifestyle? No. But they have the ability to make ends meet while living within an hour’s commute to the center of the mega city that is Tokyo. Let me paint the picture of what a Japanese middle-class lifestyle looks like. We have a roof over our heads, in fact, we own it. Well, the bank does. Press a button Do it once. Now give me the key. We always have food on the table, clean water, electricity, gas, heat, air conditioning, internet, smartphones No oven… dishwasher, our dedicated drying machine though kids go to a free public school Where lunches are made in-house, although we do pay for that, like two dollars a meal. After school, the kids partake in extracurricular activities such as art classes and sports. We have health care We’re required to pay for it, but it’s universal so we can’t be denied access and the quality is good. Did I mention kids are free from visits to the family doctor dentist and optometrist two prescriptions? We don’t own a car. We could probably afford it. But the benefits are so little within Tokyo that I feel it’d be a luxury expense, especially since the kids walk to school and my wife has her commuter pass paid for by her company, which in general is what most Companies do. For fun, well, it’s mostly free or cheap activities that we do like going to parks, visiting family and friends, catching up festival Or going to super CentOS, which are nice public bathhouses that cost under $10 a head The biggest non-essential costs we have are eating out and paying for public transport to get to places. Although I love traveling my family isn’t as keen as me so we don’t often get out of the city. As a single person the cost wouldn’t be too bad. But as a family expenses really do add up. Especially when hotel rates are based on the number of occupants versus the number of rooms So does that paint a bit of a picture about our lifestyle? Now let’s get into some overarching themes. First up is family: Family is such a huge factor for me. Not only my immediate family, but siblings and parents, too This must sound funny since my Canadian family is an ocean away. But my Japanese family are all within a short walk. So you win some you lose some. Why our Japanese family over our Canadian one? Well that has to do with the cost and availability of housing, not our affection for our loved ones, at least That’s what it publicly say. In the area around Vancouver even when our family wanted to be located near each other It was a practical impossibility to rent or purchased in the same neighborhood. Only those that got in before the craziness that is the Vancouver housing market were able to establish themselves. While Vancouver’s not considered a large city by international standards, living in a place suitable for a family within an hour’s commute of the downtown core was not possible for me and many working professionals. In Japan, housing can come in all shapes and sizes. Since zoning laws allow you to build on very small pieces of land; as an example, I now own a detached home that for all intents and purposes takes up all the land. I don’t have a yard beyond the few feet of concrete on the side. That’s a trade-off that I was able to make. I chose no yard Versus living another 30 minutes away where I could have had one and a more spacious house to boot but I wanted not only to be closer to the center of Tokyo but more importantly close to family. Unlike years ago in Japan. We don’t live in a Multi-generational household. If our parents do require care as they get older as opposed to the free childminding that they currently provide us. We live so close that we can walk there in minutes. So we’re close, but not living on top of each other close. The services available to family members from my niece who recently graduated from the day care system, to my kids in elementary school, to the grandparents who may one day go to adult daycare are all located within a few minutes walk. Groceries, health clinics, parks, recreation centers and quite importantly, a train station are all equally close Tokyo being a walkable city is a big deal that lends itself to a healthier lifestyle. And let’s talk about health: So there are many aspects to health beyond access to doctors and hospitals, but let’s discuss those things. Whenever I want to see our family doctor, we walk or bike to the clinic and can be seen within an hour. But if we choose the right time of day, it’s more like 15 minutes. No appointments necessary. The cost is so little that I never think if it’s worthwhile to spend the money to see the doctor. Instead, the equation I calculate is whether a visit is not only worth my time, but the time of the doctor. A pharmacy is usually located beside the clinic which means you can pick up the prescription quite quickly Prescriptions are also mostly covered under the health insurance system and even if they weren’t, the national governments control ensure that medications are affordable. If I want to see a specialist, but the dermatologist for my eczema are an ENT for my tinnitus I can drop in just as I did with my family doctor. no referral our appointment necessary and oh yeah, they’re also located within walking distance But what about the quality of care well? Subjectively I find it comparable to Canada some things are better some are worse But overall I trust that the doctors are qualified that I can get access when I need to and that I’ll be taken care of Whether I have money or not even with Japan’s universal health care coverage you are required to pay 30% of costs there are monthly limits that mean you won’t end up having to pay beyond your means and Thus won’t be going bankrupt due to some unforeseen or chronic. Health issues you’re also free to choose any hospital nationwide Now I’ve been talking about physical health, what about mental health that I can’t personally comment on since I’ve never utilized the services Hearing stories from other people gives me the impression that Western countries are more progressive in this This kind of leads into stigmas and social belonging There’s this idea in Japan that you don’t want to stand out which means you don’t want to admit You have mental health issues or that you lost your job or many of the other life? Situations that you may have to deal with I think in the West we’re more open to talking about our personal problems in Japan It’s just not something that’s often done What I’ve observed is that people are generally Understanding and sympathetic to those who are struggling in life? Whether it be financially physically mentally are otherwise Like any other developed country the Japanese deal with a host of issues From your kid who isn’t doing well in school to an uncle who’s in a wheelchair to that cousin who has a learning difference these things are talked about but usually quietly a Lot of commentary you might hear about Japan makes the society seem rigid and stuck in the past But I’ve seen a lot of changes and openness not only in my generation, but the generations above and below I keep on coming across examples of things progressing and improving from gender Inequality to working hours to an overhaul of the University Entrance Examination System you’ve probably heard that Japan has a suicide problem But the thing is it’s now not that different from other developed countries There was a period of time in the 90s and the turn of the century when the economy wasn’t doing well and the numbers spiked What if trends continue in a few years the rate will be the same as the u.s.? Which unfortunately is seeing its numbers rise? There’s also a stereotype that in Japan foreigners are just that foreigners, and they will never belong So does our family equally Canadian and Japanese feel like we belong I’d have to say yes And ironically probably even more so than in our community in Canada a country that is known for its Multiculturalism and is a country of immigrants. Why do I think this well? I don’t think it has anything to do with the people themselves But more with how the community is set up and the social expectations that come with living here I keep on coming back to this point, but it really makes a difference in my life And that’s walkability in Japan men people walk a ride around the community so you inevitably Run into the same people over and over when people know you and you them that promotes a sense of responsibility to the greater whole schools another reason for that sense of belonging School especially elementary school forces parents to interact with one another and I do specifically use the word force Because you’re gonna interact whether you like it or not the elementary school catchment area is roughly a kilometre in radius which means everyone lives within a 10-minute walk to school and In some areas you wouldn’t even need to walk that far because all these circles represent a ten minute walk to each Elementary school in the area that I could spot There’s this term called the popsicle index The popsicle index is the percent of people in a community who believe a child can leave their home? go to the nearest place to buy a Popsicle and come home alone safely Kind of like the good old days of yore when I was a little girl growing up in West Philadelphia Popsicle index was a hundred percent was unthinkable That we couldn’t run up to spruce street play the pins get a popsicle and come home alone and any time of day or early evening okay so Japan 2018 weekday mornings elementary school kids in my neighborhood gather together in groups to walk to school without adult supervision On the way back home though. They’re all on their own Given this fact. I’d say that my neighborhood would score 100% on that popsicle index Especially since there are stores along the way that they could stop by and pick one up To expand upon this idea of children roaming the streets unsupervised I don’t think the term playdate exists in Japan kids just walk or bike to a friend’s house or even meet up in the park Once they get cellphones which most kids seem to have by the time they hit junior high They make plans via the popular line messaging gap Do Japanese parents fear for the safety of their children that a malicious crime like kidnapping might occur I think parents are about as fearful of this in Japan as they are in Canada But what I can confirm is that Japanese parents don’t seem to be as concerned about kids being injured by speeding vehicles because in residential areas in Japan The pedestrians and cyclists rule the road and cars are limited to 30 kilometers an hour and for you Americans That’s 20 miles an hour in Canada cars. Generally go double that speed regardless of posted speed limits Something else that contributes to social belonging is both the voluntary and involuntary community participation The local group of five to ten households that manage the waste collection point that’s not an option Being the parent monitor for your elementary school kids morning gathering spot also not an option attending the festival for the local shrine That’s optional going to school festivals also optional passing along the local news bulletin not an option For people who don’t want to conform this type of living can be onerous to put it in perspective though I can’t seem to survive more than a year in the Canadian corporate world as I like the freedom of self-employment too much by beater What’s happening? We need to talk about your TPS reports yet I don’t find the social norms in our little community in Tokyo to be burdensome in fact I kind of find the rules freeing, but how can that be? Well following the rules only take up a small percentage of my life So even if I don’t like the rules they don’t dominate how I live As long as I follow the little rules. I’m free to do whatever I like and I also believe the pros far outweigh the cons yes I have to pitch in to clean the garbage area, but because everyone has to do it No, one is going to purposely make a mess there I have to watch my kids gather in the morning a few weeks out of the year But I can also rest assured that my kids are safe going to school on their own having to be reined in at work We’re controlled me for a good 8 hours a day. Yeah, the cover sheet. I know I know bill talked to me about it. Yeah Did you get that memo whereas conforming to these community rules is maybe eight hours a month? You might be thinking I have specifically addressed. How we fit in as a foreign or perhaps half foreign family My wife was born and raised in Tokyo after all yes. I like my idea Sorry, it’s in the wallet my ID It’s inside is in there my ID well. I can tell you this. I don’t have regular run-ins with the cops Because there are many touch points of course and free to attend social obligations You’re going to participate and that ensures you become a part of the community Even with the language barrier and let’s be clear. I still suck at Japanese I’m much more involved at the local level in Japan than I’ve ever been in Canada So yeah we fit in and I kind of don’t know if we even had a choice Now let’s move on over to education Education was a top fare I had before moving to Japan I heard the schools restrict and that creativity was stifled bullying was also a thing my kids have been just fine Things are different in Japan than Canada. There is no doubt, but I think they’ve been receiving decent education in both systems What you need to know about Japanese education at the elementary school level? Is that unless you’re someone from the elite who wants their kid to attend the top? University in the country the pressure is not all it’s cracked up to be Once you start getting into junior high in a high school I think it’s a different story, but my family is not at that stage yet So if you’ve seen those videos or read those articles about Japanese kids testing to get into the right kindergarten to ensure their future success That’s the exception not the norm Since education is governed at the national level this ensures a certain standard of quality all across the country big city our small town You can see the same types of schools with the same curriculums with the same gyms and swimming pools With the same sports days and festivals there are Japanese math and science classes, but there’s also social and life studies arts music Physical education and home economics there are several field trips a year and many festivals to put on it’s honestly a more diverse educational experience than I’ve seen in Canadian schools Teachers are hired by the prefecture which is similar to a province or state and are moved around schools every few years So while my family isn’t located one of the wealthier parts of Tokyo I feel the facilities and teachers aren’t dramatically different – the more money Daria’s The vast majority of students attend public school especially at the elementary level, so this really is the story for most Japanese Tisa the program for International Student Assessment ranks Japanese students quite highly If you ask my kids uncle prefers the Japanese school system because she says she understands it better all Shin is rather indifferent We’ve witnessed incidents of bullying in both Canada and Japan, and I can honestly say I wouldn’t rate one place better Or worse both school systems are anti-bullying, but if you know kids the unfortunately can find creative ways to get around official policies One big difference the kids and I have noticed between the school systems is the freedom and responsibility Given to students overall I’d say Japanese have more responsibility than Canadian students Whether it’s serving up lunch cleaning the school putting on events or watching over the younger ones but being able to be yourself Canada is the winner in that category you can have purple hair scooter into class and have your own learning style So I’ve spent a lot of time talking about obligations education and help, but what about the fun stuff? recreation and leisure time This is perhaps the trickiest section for me to talk about that’s because my family doesn’t have the typical setup I work for myself and thus make my own hours my wife works, but it’s fairly close to the typical nine-to-five So she’s home within decent hours while our working hours are in line with Canadian parents But I know I’d say we’re home more than other Japanese parents are So from my experience the average Japanese family has less time together than a Canadian one in Canada There’s a bigger priority on having quality of time with not only children But also with spouses like if there were some non-essential work that needed to get done in the evening Or your kids soccer game to attend I feel like in Japan the work would win out Whereas in Canada taking your kid to the soccer game? Would this is of course a huge generalization, but if you need to sum it up? That’s how I feel the cookie would crumble for parents. I don’t see a big culture of having date nights within my Canadian family It’s something that’s deemed essential for a healthy relationship in Japan dates are for unmarried couples not parents In Japan taking care of the families also still more of a female than a male thing So it’s expected that a mother would make the meals and clean the house Times are changing and the role is becoming more equal, but it’s probably a generation behind what I see on the ground in Canada Japanese family vacations are shorter affairs: think a couple of games as opposed to a week There’s just not enough consecutive time off of work to go on long trips There’s also lots of school activities that need to be attended to Overall Japanese people seem to have less free time to do things of their choosing, but when the Japanese do recreational things They usually do it in a serious way So what’s the quality of life like in Tokyo I bought a house? It’s somewhere. I can see my family living for the foreseeable future Because we can live near to family because we can be part of a small community Because we can work jobs that don’t require long hours because we can spend time with our family Because we don’t need to own a car we can have a decent quality of life One thing I’d like to come back to is the education we’re in a special situation where our kids can speak English And that’s becoming an increasingly important subject in Japanese schools It’s one of the main subjects you can use for test scores for getting into both high schools and universities Coming from Canada my kids have a natural advantage Furthermore their Canadian citizenship and myself and my wife’s ability to make a living back in Canada Meaning that we always have the option of going back to the Canadian education system for certain years If things aren’t working well in Japan This means our kids probably don’t experience the same type of schooling pressure that regular Japanese ones do on The other hand we have very much been actively working to ensure our kids are fluently bilingual in Japanese in English It’s not a given that they can speak both languages. They’re currently not at a native level of English hi There’s like when we were living in Canada. They weren’t at a native level of Japanese It’s a constant struggle to prepare them to be able to communicate at a need of level in two languages By the time they graduate from high school not only that we want to make sure they can feel at ease living in either country a Very important question, but one that’s also so subjective as if we’re happy are we happy with our life in Japan How about a simple answer to this complicated question? Yeah Thanks for watching. See you next time bye. What’s the quality of life like where you’re from? Hey guys Greg here as promised in the follow-up to this video, I’ll talk about the costs the standard of living in Japan I think in developed countries if you’re wealthy enough you can have a fairly good quality of life So what I’m more interested in talking about is what the quality of life will be like for a regular average citizen stay tuned for that if you like these types of videos they do take a while to make and Making them requires the consumption of quite a bit of tea And I really do slurp I Really do slurp my tea like that It’s hot right. You know this is great Japanese technology but anyways if you’d If you have the means to support my tea drinking habit. I have a patreon account so consider that all right

100 Replies to “Japanese Quality of Life: My Family’s Experience in Tokyo”

  1. So is it still the case that if your not Japanese its basically impossible to life there permanently?

  2. Nice video!! Really helpful with a lot if details information. May I ask you about your monthly wage range?? Just wanna have a idea of how difficult it is to afford a house and maintain living quality.

  3. Not even surprised Canada is less accepting. . many studies have shown why this is and interestingly it's due to Canadas hyper diversity

  4. Hello! I’m from surrey near Vancouver, and I’m young, 18. I want to live here as ALL of my family is here for the most part, but housing is insane. Makes me so sad that it is hard to live in a place that is not even considered “luxury”.

    – your local vancouverite

  5. Just stay informed on mental health issues: http://www.cchrjapan.org/ or https://www.cchr.org/
    Great video by the way, brings Japan and its people so close… 🙂

  6. The American right wing scum commenting here don't believe in responsibilities, just in their idea of "freedom", which for them means absolute license to do anything they please regardless of the effect of their actions on others.

  7. There is one thing I don't like about Japan: too much kitsch and too much plastic. Even the furniture and bath room stuff like showers, tubes, sinks look plastic-like. I am from Northern Germany and our quality of life is good. We struggle with unenployment, but not our family. The best thing here is: environment care: a huge issue in Germany, all has to be organic, we are always heading for better energy solutions, getting away from coal and coming to more to wind/sun energy etc., health care, tidiness, food quality, education system (all free, no fees). What could be better: we are a country of individualists. So it's a bit "me, myself and I". Not much care for community (in the east more than in the west). Two things are missing in your video: what about rightwing tendencies in Japan? and how environmently friendly are the Japanese: organic food? fair trade? vegetarians/vegans? alternative energies? nuclear issues? (Fukushima was a nightmare and not many Japanese seem to care)

  8. Many Japanese, including the young and after 40s are moving to South East Asia for a better living. Mental stress in Japan is not as easy as showing on this Vlog

  9. I like Japanese people because of the behavior they have and most of our family looks like Japanese people, I want to visit this country at least for one time

  10. So Japan is like living in the corporate world 24/7, except Japan living has a lot more mandatory rules. I'll give you credit for trying to put a positive spin on it though.

  11. I love ur videos. I’m in love with Japan so much. I wish one day I will be able to move to Japan and find myself a Japanese husband.

  12. I love how thorough you are all every single video.
    Been subbed to you for about 2-3 years and never am bored!

    Thank you from an Irish-Japanese hafu

  13. I have to say that you are not living a typical Japanese salary man life, not even close. Using your life style as an example is kinda like using the one percenters as an example here in the US. Lots of the social issues in Japan come from work life unbalance, strict social norm and minimal social mobility. Not touching those is like talking about black life without touching discrimination and hood violence in the US, which is pointless.

  14. While my hometown in Canada is very walk-able I have lived in places that seem to be designed against pedestrians.
    Saddly I agree about Canadian drivers moving too fast on streets that say 30kph.

  15. I can't imagine I'm gonna say this, but 400000 usd house close to center of the capital, with fair size? It's CHEAP compare to chinese housing price

  16. I used to watch TokyoCooney back in the day and he really made me want to live in Japan for a bit, this video gave me the same vibes. Super informative, man

  17. No black, no Hispanics, no Muslims…Just 3 of the reasons Japan is such a civilized and safe country. Screw Canada and your silly multiculturalism.

  18. a Canadian Japanese explaining how he feels tha he fits in Japan…. like a Mexican-American exxplaining that he fits in Mexico…

  19. Tokyo isn't even close to the largest metropolitan city, Shanghai and Beijing have over twice the population and 10x land area. Tokyo is about 800sq miles and 10 million people.

  20. I’m curious if the ‘involuntary community involvement’ is as strong for apartment dwellers as house owners?

  21. In Finland, everything is fine, except of walkability, as the cities are VERY sparsely populated. And getting from one city to another without a car is a hell of a challenge.

  22. Tokyo is such a large, amazingly clean city and easy to travel within. Glad you are able to live nearby comfortably and share your experiences – much of the housing in the city is very small.

  23. Well of course you cannot be denied access for healthcare, you pay for it. o>O I get what peole mean by the term universal coverage, but you are paying, so…systems still a bit broken worldwide. Still, good to see you and thine family have been doing well in Japan.

  24. Unless you're a native American there's no such thing as "Canadian". You are either European or Japanese as yourself. Or of whatever other ethnic origin. You will not ever belong in Japan if you are not ethnic Japanese. This is just a factr. Japan is a nation by and for a people of an ethnic origin. To resent and deny that is an attack , discrimination and you deserve to be destroyed with every other colonial criminal in history. The social fragmentation, helplessness and utter subjugation to criminal elites that comes from the "pluralist", "multiracial" societies imposed on European nations are some of the worst crimes against any people in history and you will not impose this on Japan. People do nopt need to dramatize every failiure for demoralisation as happens in the U.S. People do not need to accept the disruption and damage from mental illnesses which includes the "LGBT" to some extent. Japan may be sticking to great values instead of being "stuck in the past". This "stuck in the past" thing is an arrogant, ignorant notion furthered by people who think their degeneracy as a norm is somehow the future. You probably belong more in Japan than the U.S. because there are more people of your cultural, ethnic background there. It is more homogeneous. It is more of an ethno-state. That is the reality. You want to champion degenerate non-values meant to genocide, repress EZuropeans as "progressive" but you come to the conclusion that it is far better in a homogeneous ethno-state like Japan. I despise your vile mindset and ignorance.

  25. its sad seeing how messed up the US compared to other countries. I love my country but we got major problems

  26. "I bought a house in Tokyo" means that you spent 50,000,000-70,000,000 Yen (700,000 US$)? Actually I did it, but so regretted after the explosions of 4 Nuclear stations in Fukushima… Anyway, how do you pay your costs of living in Tokyo. Just air conditioners are probably costing 300 US$ a month now.

  27. If you are free at sometime please give me some information !!
    1: I am applying Globis university, Tokyo for MBA and i have 7 years Telecommunications experiences. Does this university is good for MBA ?
    2: After completion of MBA can i settle myself in Japan job market .. I mean is there good prospect of job for MBA graduate students ?

    3: What the current situation of Job availability and security in Japan ?

  28. im in canada quebec and im in a village that is pretty boring without any story close to the U.S borders even on summer nothing is happening food is expensive cause the grocery store is the only one in the village i think ill move to st-jean-sur-richelieu soon more lively everything is close no need to exit the town.

  29. good video. But the guardian is absolute garbage for citing anything. they are a far left fake news media publication. plus the lefty propaganda was spewing pretty hard. Gender equality is a fluff term made up by people who are delusional to the fact that if you put a woman and a man in the same room and gave them life choices to make, the man and the woman will always gravitate towards different occupations.

  30. Japan is not safe at all because of nuclear radiation. Food and sea are contaminated! According the BBC News and Germany News the radiation is not under control but Japan leader Abe said that they did it so Abe is a big lier and his grand father is war criminal

  31. 도쿄에 사는 일본인들의 일상을 보여주고 있네요. 휴식 및 산책을 할수 있는 공원, 학교, 주택등에서의 다양한 삶을 다큐멘터리 처럼 보여주고 있네요.
    (민족과 민족이 맞서 일어나고 왕국과 왕국이 맞서 일어날 것이며, 곳곳에 식량 부족과 지진이 있을 것입니다. 이 모든일은 진통의 시작입니다.-마태복음 24:7,8
    지혜로운 자와 함께 걸으면 지혜롭게 되지만, 미련한 자와 어울리면 해를 입는다.-잠언 13:20
    당신은 가엾게 여겨서는 안 됩니다. 생명은 생명으로, 눈은 눈으로, 이는 이로, 손은 손으로, 발은 발로 갚아야 합니다.-신명기 19:21
    자기 죄를 덮어 가리는 자는 성공하지 못하지만, 죄를 고백하고 버리는 자는 자비를 받는다.-잠언 28:13
    의로운 자들은 땅을 차지하고 거기서 영원히 살 것이다.-시편 37:29
    하나님께서는 세상을 매우 사랑하셔서 자신의 독생자를 주셨습니다. 그것은 그에게 믿음을 나타내는 사람은 누구나 멸망되지 않고 영원한 생명을 얻게 하려는 것입니다.-요한복음 3:16
    그분은 그들의 눈에서 모든 눈물을 닦아 주실 것이다. 더 이상 죽음이 없고, 슬픔과 부르짖음과 고통도 더는 없을 것이다. 이전 것들이 다 사라져 버린 것이다.-요한 계시록 21:4)

    (당뇨, 혈압, 암환자는) 네 저수조(방광)에서 (나오는) 물(본인 오줌)을 마시고, 네 우물에서 흐르는 물을 마셔라.-잠언 5:15

  32. Thank you for the informative video! As for my quality of life, I'm living in a suburb of a city in the central USA. There is a distinct four seasons so nice spring and autumn but you pay for it with hot summers and cold winters. Walking everywhere is just not possible. It's 3 miles to the closest grocery store and 15 miles to downtown so people pretty much drive everywhere. I've got a home on 3 acre lot that's costing me $1600/month plus the associated utility bills and end of the year property taxes. Schools are really good here, but the quality declines as you get closer to the city center. Infastructure appears to be way better in Tokyo than here. I love the smooth roads and how clean the sidewalks are where you live. I can't comment on what's a typical work day here since I work as a pilot for an airline with a totally different schedule than most people, but I would estimate a "normal" office job is a 9 hour day with one of those hours for lunch.

  33. I hope your children will be able to be bilingual during their teens. Make sure they can read and write in both languages. I wonder if there are classes for English for English Speakers. I found this video informative and the formatting made me think this was a high budget documentary. The transitions made me interested to continuously watch these videos.

  34. For me in a suburb of Los Angeles, it is fairly nice and clean, but has nothing of the community feel as you show here, which looks very nice and welcoming by comparison. Everybody drives everywhere here, and people seem disappointed to run into someone in the hall or street, weird as that sounds. People are generally friendly, but there is a general sense of fear in my opinion, not love and sharing like with human brothers and sisters that trust each other. Watching anime all these years, I always thought how nice and family-seeming Japanese communities seem to be by comparison.

  35. This dude could make a KILLING making travel guides for, well, anywhere or anything!
    The production values, professional attention to detail and the raw humanity are so compelling.

  36. As far as higher education for your children, aren't they also Canadian citizens? So if they cannot get into a Japanese university, can't they use Canada as a relief valve?

  37. Tokyo is ultra clean, no trash, cig butts, nothing on the streets. It is part of the social order in Japan. It’s group culture & they are aware of how things affect other people. No talking loud in public or trains, certainly no cell phones. Even blowing your nose in public is rude

  38. I love these videos but the constant cuts to non-Japanese media (fresh prince, office space, that fat American woman talking about popsicles, etc) completely kills the immersion. I don't want to see any of that stuff when the magic is happening.

  39. i don't see any values for family,relationships in this bizarre city life and my kids wont be learning humman values in this speed up lifestyle wher we look up for quality and easy access of life in this concrete structures is very bad…..Im an Indian 27years old been to america worked their but i have to come back for the human values that i was loosing…now im happy here with my family and friends in india living with family is an ultimate life.

  40. I've been recently thinking about where I would move to if I ever chose to leave the U.S. Japan and Canada are at the top of the list. Still doing my research on the specific areas I would settle to.

  41. i grew up in a middle class family here in new zealand. The cost of living here is very expensive and most wages don't keep up with it very well. A lot of people here struggle to make ends meet. However being a developed country we've never experienced any other major struggles. Crime here is probably higher than japan. But most neighborhoods are safe. Our healthcare is good however not free but heavily subsidized especially for children. Dental care is expensive for adults. Our schools have a decile ranking 1-10 on the quality of education, overall the education system here is good and university is subsidized.

  42. Great video! From what I've heard, Japanese work-life is pretty heavy for a Westerner to adjust to though. I'm from Finland and worked in Germany for a while, and it was pretty annoying how hierarchical the culture was, but the Japanese have the hierarchy thing on the next level so to speak, at least from what I know..

  43. I think most of us foreigners romanticize the beautiful aspects of a country to say we'll like to live in a certain country but as some comments say Japan is not only Ginza or the metropolitan area and not as pristine as we think, which can also be said of New York, Paris, etc. Yet Japan to me stands out for the things you highlighted and for the culture, I know I would also like to live in Paris but it had to be in the millionaire row whereas in Japan it can be pretty much everywhere

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