This is how I spent my fifth consecutive Fourth of July away from home: swan paddle-boating in Kichijoji.
A few friends wanted to go hit the American army base to celebrate Independence Day and to watch the fireworks. But seeing as I don't like to increase my chances of being violated, degraded, and harassed by members of the American Armed forces, I chose the swans... and the sweat.
No amount of words could describe the disgust I feel in this humidity. Walking outside feels like walking into a sauna. Sweat drips down from my face and I'm not even running... I'm not even MOVING and I'm sweating.
You would think that wearing a skirt or a light dress would save me and make the humidity more bearable and airy. Instead, I feel sticky. Nothing I can wear will make me feel NOT sticky. I've had a lot more 2 shower days than normal because I literally can't stand the feeling of clothes sticking to my body, or oil emanating from my forehead, making my hair stick to my face. I had to open a handkerchief that I had originally bought for someone at home and use it for myself because I needed something to wipe my perpetually sweaty brow with.
What I don't understand is the fact that despite this repulsive weather, Japanese girls are still wearing 10,000 layers of clothing, leggings, jeans, and cakey makeup with their immaculately styled (and somehow non-poofy) coifs. I look a fine mess every day-- hair in a tizzy, make-up running, fan frantically and shamelessly waving in one hand whilst brandishing a precautionary umbrella in the other... but these girls look like they all just stepped out of some horribly over-dressed fairy tale, which is amazing considering it's the rainy season.
梅雨(つゆ, tsuyu)：the rainy season. It's certainly been interesting living through this... and all Japanese weather in general. The rainy season is basically like a menopausal woman: seemingly quiet and over-exaggerated for the most part, with random unprovoked downpours of Biblical proportions the rest of the time...
My basic rule of thumb for avoiding and predicting the rain is simple: if your neighbors are hanging their laundry to dry outside, it's not gonna rain. If there's no laundry out, bring an umbrella.
*Cultural note: Japanese housewives do laundry EVERY DAY. It's their job. Seriously.
Today, the bastards had their laundry inside, so I wore my rain boots and brought my big umbrella, expecting a fair amount of moisture. WRONG. It only drizzled from 8:30-12:00, meaning I looked like a total jackass in my rain boots while everyone else was wearing platform sandals to keep their feet dry. God-- don't my neighbors know how much I depend on them?! We're supposed to be a team! A thriving ecosystem! >_<;;
But luckily, it's the last week of the rainy season... so it'll be drier heat again! LET THE SUN SHINE IN!