Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Yikes!!! And I thought Pittsburgh could be bad! Though the weather temperature here is around the same as Pittsburgh, I have never felt so cold as in Niigata. I've come up with a few theories to why. The first theory is that it seems so cold here because of the constant winds and how Niigata is stuck right between the sea and the mountains.

The second reasoning is, in America I also had central heating. I always wake up in the morning and I can see my breath and I don't feel my nose. When I brush my teeth and place the toothbrush back on the stand, I can see steam coming off the brush.
Only the living room is the warm room out of the whole house.

When I go to school, I have to walk about ten minutes to the station. If I forget my tights and just go in normal socks, my legs turn blue.

I've really come to enjoy the train ride, it's warm, compared to my school.

There's no heat in the hallways but each classroom as a stove. During break, between classes, everyone huddles around the stove, trying to get warm.

Being in Japan, I discovered something very peculiar on the road. I noticed it when I first came. On the roads are little silver plates. I did not really understand their purpose but now I do. The little silver plates spurt out water to melt the snow.

Now you might be thinking "woah woah woah, doesn't melting snow with water just cause ice?" Yep, but the water is from an underground river, Japan was made up of volcanoes, so the water is warm and therefore keeps the ice away too. Though sometimes I do slip on the way to school or get sprayed by one of the silver plates.


  1. Holly,
    Your experiences in the cold are surprising for most of us! How we take heating for granted! I liked your observation and picture about the unique sprinklers in the streets. Last week with the ice and snow here in Pittsburgh and even in Atlanta, that ingenious system would have been most welcome! We had our first snow day! Take care, and dress warmly!

  2. I had the same observations in London 25 years ago. There was a little more central heating, but hardly enough insulation! Never complained about cold weather camping after that!