famous bear once said that he often became confused because he was a bear of
very little brain. I certainly don’t
have a big brain like you humans, but I don’t think it would be fair to say
that I am a bear of very little brain either.
Still, I do become confused by some of the things that you humans
The book also said the Japanese eat unusual food – things called Sushi and Sashimi, which are just Japanese words for raw fish. This really confused me. I had to read for a very long time before I realized that some people actually cook fish! Being a bear, I was horrified by this. Cook fish? How barbaric. No bear in his right mind would ever dream of cooking fish when it tastes so good fresh out of the stream. In my travels I have come to realize that different people do things in different ways, and it is unwise to judge until you have tried it. Still, cooked fish is just too strange to contemplate. Some day, when I am feeling very brave, I promise you that I will try it. Who knows, I may even like it, though I find that very hard to imagine.
may be surprised to hear that this was not the thing that really confused
me. Much about the Geography of Japan
was very natural to me. It is a very
mountainous country, which sounded a lot like my native
done a lot of research before this trip, so I thought I knew what to expect,
and would be ready for it. Have you ever
had that happen? You look forward to
something, you plan for it, you think about what it will be like, and then – it
isn’t anything like what you expected.
It isn’t just that it was different than
was one thing that confused me thought.
I overheard two people speaking English, and they kept saying that the
people looked so different in
I found what I liked best was the strange mix of things that were different and things that were the same. One minute things would look completely normal, and then I would start noticing how strange things were. When I say strange, I mean really, really strange. You aren’t going to believe this, but they had electric toilets, and they even had a “standby” setting, just like a computer. Bears would never invent something like that.
buildings looked a lot like the buildings in any city, but there were so many
of them. Some of the signs were in English,
which surprised me, but most of them were in Japanese. I found myself sitting by the window for
hours, feeling very tired, just watching the cars and the people go by. I wondered why I was feeling so tired,
especially during the day. I am normally
a very wide awake bear. My traveling
companion said it was because the daytime in
food was one thing that seemed completely normal to me. The Sushi was simply excellent. I had forgotten how much I love raw fish. When they brought my first meal of Sushi I was
all excited - until they brought me two sticks instead of a knife and
fork. I know how to eat with my paws,
the way any sensible bear would eat. I
have learned to eat with a knife and fork, though I have to tell you that I
still find it rather strange. But when
they brought me sticks to eat with, I was just confused. Fortunately my traveling companion knew all
about them. He showed me how to use
them, and told me that they were called Chop Sticks. This time, knowing what they were called
didn’t help at all. Eventually I did get to the point where I could use Chop
Sticks enough to eat my Sushi. I learned
many things that day, but the biggest lesson I learned was that Chop Sticks are
meant to be used with fingers. Making
them work with a bear’s paw is very difficult.
In the end, the Sushi was so good that it was all worth it. I think I would go back to
end of my week in