Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Getting Shot Down The Rails In Japan

Riding trains in Japan isn't some sort of hobo-throwback experience of a bygone American era. It's simply the best, most efficient way to get around the country. You can have your TSA pat-downs and airport endless waits, we'll take Japanese train travel, especially the bullet version, any day.

A typical Japanese train station, complete with nice safety barriers at the platform edge. So thoughtful! A snazzy conductor, watching a train pull in.

Number one and two with a bullet - the fast boys (girls? both?) arrive, like gliding, white, svelte platypuses.

Once inside, it's a serene atmosphere, complete with "Mad Men" era sales attendant. You bet the train leaves on time, conductors obsessively checking their watches.
You're late? Wrong train? Don't dally or you'll absolutely get the wave of the red flag and the shrill of the whistle. How do we know? Well...some firsthand experience.

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