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Get to Know Your 2019 RWC Host Nation

The time has finally arrived… 2019 Rugby World Cup is on our doorstep.  But what do we really know about the host nation?  After some Googling, digging and reading we found some really interesting facts about Japan….

  1. There are more seniors than kids. The Japanese islands of Okinawa have one of the world’s longest life spans, and currently, the oldest humans in the world are two Japanese people at 117 and 116 years old.
  2. Japan has one of the world’s lowest crime rates. The most common crimes in Japan include stealing a bicycle or umbrellas left outside the convenience store.
  3. The most vending machines in the world. They’re literally everywhere, around every corner, and it’s almost like they’re part of the modern Japanese culture, but also a good and convenient way for the companies to sell beverages and make money without paying staff.                                                                                                                                                                             
  4. Japan consists of 6852 islands.
  5. To clean is a part of the education in many schools. Law and Order is a big thing in Japan (I’m not talking about the TV-series), and it’s important to learn this already as a child. That’s why a lot of Japanese schools are making their students clean toilets, classrooms and the school area.  This also saves money because the schools won’t need as many cleaners.  Imagine if this was the case in your country?
  6. Japan has a penis festival. The festival is known as Kanamara Matsuri, which means something like “the festival for the phallus of steal”. The festival is celebrated in the Japanese city of Kawasaki on the first Sunday in April. In short, just about everything, including candy, vegetables and decorations have the shape of the male reproductive organ or other things related to fertility.
  7. More than 1500 earthquakes a year.
  8. To take a power nap at work gets more and more common.
  9. Fruit is one of the best gifts.                                                                                                                                   
  10. More than 3000 McDonald’s restaurants….. Despite that, it’s very rare to see obese people when walking around the cities.                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
  11. To slurp up the noodles is considered polite. According to Japanese customary, it’s polite to slurp up the noodles since it shows the cook that you appreciate the food and at the same time, it enhances the flavours.
  12. Many Japanese eat ready-made breakfast or dinner from a supermarket.
  13. There are cafes where you can pay to cuddle.  But there is nothing sexual about it. The reason that these cafes exist is because a lot of inhabitants are single and loneliness is a big problem in Japan due to too much work. That’s why there is demand for cuddling and intimacy, and at these cafes, you can come and get a hug or just lie down in someone’s lap, or spend time together with another human being.                                                                             
  14. It is forbidden to bathe in hot springs with tattoos. Tattoos are something that’s considered ugly in Japan, and not only in terms of look, but it’s also associated with gangs and crime. Luckily, nowadays many places offer guests to cover their tattoos with a skin-coloured band-aid.
  15. In Japan, you bow instead of shaking hands.  According to tradition, the   lower you bow, the more respect you show towards the other person.
  16. More than 2 billion manga magazines and books are being sold each year.                                                        
  17. They eat more than 17 million ton fish per year, more than any other country.
  18. Suicide is a big problem in the Japanese society.
  19. They’re cultivating square melons because it’s easier to store them.                                                                                                   
  20. There are cafe’s where the staff is dressed up as French Maids.                                                                                                               
  21. Capsule hotels are available in bigger cities.                                                                                                                                               
  22. Tokyo is the biggest city in the world.
  23. When you go to the bathroom or toilet, you’re supposed to wear special slippers.
  24. Sometimes the trains are so packed that a train attendant needs to shove the passengers inside to close the door.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         
  25. Japan will host the 2019 Rugby World Cup as well as the 2020 Olympic Games.                                                                                                                 

Married to my soulmate & mother of two, professional chef/hospitality lecturer & foodie writer for this website.

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