Life in Japan

First solo adventures

3 March 2015

Fu wanted me to help him pick up some medicine, so I decided to… drive out myself today!

Good chance to practise getting used to the car as well as the crazy Japanese roads.

According to the nabi (as well as Google Maps), it was a 3-minute drive away.

I arrived at the clinic… one hour later.


Redonks. -_-;;;

The final approach to the clinic was a left turn, but the clinic was on the opposite side of the road, and at the corner of the junction. Which means after turning left, I need to immediately turn right into the clinic. Too much traffic for this newbie to handle such an un-simple manoeuvre.

So I just drove straight.

But the nabi took it as I arrived at my destination, so there was no more guidance. I thought, it’s ok. I just have to come back in the opposite direction and I can easily turn into the carpark! So I decided to roam the neighborhood for a while, randomly driving this way and that.

Then I made a turn and left the main road and driving into Skinny Avenue, where the road became super narrow and only one lane.

To add to the stress, I have to share the tiny sliver of road with cyclists, pedestrians and lamp posts. Unlike in Singapore, there is no elevated pavement for pedestrians here, so essentially there is no obstacle between them and me! But the worst of all is vehicles parked by the side!!! One lane only you still park by the side?! *shakes angry fist*

Busy playing balance and trying not to take out my side mirror or killing anyone + one lane and no place to stop + no nabi = Drive until where also dunno

I finally managed to reconfigure the nabi at a traffic light but even so, I detoured some more -_-  Some roads split FIVE WAYS (5!!!) and I have no freaking idea how to even turn. So I usually follow the car in front of me. Ahahaha. Or just turn left cause that’s the safest.


Yes, I just decided to name our car Haru, because Haru means “spring”, the time we got our car! It’s also a name for both males and females, so Fu can call the car “her” also if he prefers hahaha.

But omg, Japanese roads really leave me flummoxed! Because the roads are so narrow, some roads I can’t even tell if it’s single or double lane, and sometimes there are no lane markings! Some roads I have no idea if I can turn into because it’s only one lane (or at least it looks that way), and I can’t quickly tell which direction it is. The worst thing is to turn into a one-way road… in the wrong direction!

And why the #()%*&!^#(@^ are some roads not perpendicular to each other? Want to turn also dunno how to turn! And then the traffic light changes to red! And there are cars lining up behind me! And then it’s only one lane!!! :A

On the way back, this ah ma was jay-cycling (leisurely!) across my path and I had to E-brake. She was startled and got off the bike and stood in the middle of the road. I waited for her to cross. Nothing. I waited for her to look at me because I was signalling for her to cross. Nothing. She looked so lost, and her face like “Why is this happening to me?” HELLO, THAT’S MY LINE!

I think I burned a lot of calories in that one hour cause my heart was racing all the way. Probably the most sedentary form of exercise ever.

But ok! I’ll eventually get used to tackling Japanese roads! *ties 必勝 headband around forehead*

When Fu came home, he barely acknowledged me before excitedly saying “I wanna go for a spin in our car!” I had already bathed so he went out for his first solo drive with Haru. Nothing happened at all on the drive.

I suppose it’s because I used up the entire excitingness quota for the day -_-


  • Reply yy 7 March 2015 at 9:53 pm

    Omg Slin! Such an exciting adventure. Also it took me so long to figure out what nabi was!! Especially because in Indonesian/Malay it means prophet, so my brain was like, this work…familiar but….whutt?? lol. Anyway jiayou (or should I say gambatte?) with the driving! Then the next time I come to Japan we can go on a road trip! (I’ll chip in for gas! :D) What with my travel inertia, you’ll probably be excellent by the time I next get to Japan…heh.

    • Reply Rin 9 March 2015 at 4:07 am

      Navigation shortformed is Navi.
      Navi Japanese-d is nabi (since they don’t have the “v” sound)

      I drove for 1+hr and across 3 prefectures today! I scared the wits out of Fu at one part but… that’s about it! :D
      At least I’m getting better all the time? Lol.

      Yes! I love road trips! Let’s go on one when you come! (will it even be this year? lol)

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