Jack Frost Nipping at Your Nose

When I went to Nicaragua, I remember people warning me how hot it was going to be. I can remember sitting in front of a rotating fan trying so hard to keep cool. In Nicaragua, the heat was like a sticky kind of heat. You’d go take a shower and by the time you got from the shower to your bed you were already sweating again. Experiencing that kind of heat will make you thankful for air conditioner. But there’s a flip side of that perhaps we don’t often consider, especially if you live in the south, and that is the cold.

What would it be like to be cold without heat? It’s not something I often considered in America. I’d go from my warm toasty house to my warm toasty car to my warm toasty school. So, what do you do when you live in a place that gets freezing cold and doesn’t have central heating? Today, I’ll tell you about my favorite way to stay warm in Japan. The Kotatsu.

A kotatsu is a small table/desk with a heater underneath. The table top is removable. Underneath the table top you put a thick blanket to hold in the heat. Then, you put a blanket underneath the kotatsu to keep you from sitting on the cold ground. It’s probably the comfiest way to stay warm here in Japan. Luckily for me, Brent and Sandy had an extra one for me when I arrived.

All that to say, it’s getting cold here in Kojima. We had our first snow last night, just a light dusting. Okayama doesn’t get much snow. The end of the year is fast approaching and I’m a little excited to be here over New Years. New Years is quite the occasion in Japan. Most people have several days off to eat huge meals and spend time with their families.

I hope all of you are staying warm!

Thank you for all your support!

-Kaleb

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