Wednesday, January 11, 2006

A couple of bad things about Japan

Consider the photos above... both show things that are rather bad about Japan (it could be a gross generalisation to say so, but I have seen a number of similar instances over the last 2 years that suggest otherwise). The first is more annoying than anything - a guy incredulously parking in front of the bus stop is dangerous but in practical terms the worst that could happen is that I miss my train home by 15 minutes instead of the usual 1.

The second is far more serious. This was taken in the car park of a busy supermarket in Kurume, and shows a 2 year old girl alone in a car. How long had she been there? Not sure, but due to the traffic we were parked for a good 10 minutes near her before we got the adjacent space, and no one came back to her. We then went into the supermarket and when we came out close to an hour later she was still there. Aside from the obvious dangers (she could choke on something and no one would be there to save her, she could fall and injure herself, she could become uncomfortable in the sealed car with no fresh air) there is also the danger that someone could come along and steal the car, along with the baby. I know that comparatively Japan is a safe country, but if a law abiding chap like me thought of it you can bet that less desirable types have too.

Shopping with a baby in tow may be annoying but what kind of mother would leave her unattended and seatbeltless in a locked car? The mind boggles...


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