Monday, December 19, 2005


If you're in warm areas, bear with me. Since it's been so cold for the past week, I've decided to write about our "furo" (bath tub).

I think our furo is quite big for our apartment size (apartment size = 60 sq. meters--645.83 sq.feet), I can stretch my legs out without any problem (although I am short, so that may not count??) and very deep (it holds 200 liters(52.83 gallons) of water but I only fill it to 180 liters (47.55 gallons)). In the winter, the bath water is set at 43C (109F), in the summer we bring the water temperature down to 39C(102.2F).

The rules of the furo (or so I was taught), are that you are supposed to wash yourself, rinse off and then go into the furo. The water is for everyone to use, so you should be clean when you go into the furo. After you are done, leave the water in for others to use, and don't pull the plug! (Satoshi has different rules (he just rinses off before going in), so I like to go in before he does...)

To get your body all warmed up, they say that it's best to stay in for at least 20 minutes. Coming from Hawaii, we don't really have bath tubs to soak in. (I grew up taking an occasional bubble bath and mostly showers).

So, when I first moved here, going to an onsen (hot spring) was as Satoshi says "mottainai" (a waste). I would only go into the bath once (right before bed) and only stay in for a couple of minutes, while Satoshi would stay in for hours. (When you go to an onsen you are supposed to go at least three times: once before dinner, once before bed and once in the morning before breakfast).

I think I've made some progress, I usually bring in a magazine (one that can get wet) with me so that I can stay in the tub for at least 30 minutes. :)

The weather people have said that this will probably the coldest winter in 10 years. They researched the winters in the past and it appears that cold winters come around every 10 years (last year we had a relatively "warm" winter).

Keep warm if your in places like I am, and cool if you're somewhere warm!
Have a great week!


Anonymous said...

i love the furo. but i REALLY love the onsen...maybe guys like it more 'cause we've all been through the gym showers...if i could have anything japanese built into my home, it would be a nice onsen-like furo. keep warm!

K and S said...

Hi Grant,

Thanks for visiting. I think Satoshi likes both because he hates the cold.

Hope you get your furo soon!!

Take care.

Anonymous said...

Hi Kat - thanks so much for your kind wishes, I hope you have a wonderful christmas and new year. Look forward to reading more of your lovely posts... I miss Japanese furo!

K and S said...

Hi Keiko,
Thanks for visiting! I enjoy reading your blog and really look forward to seeing what delicious desserts you come up with in 2006. Your photos are gorgeous!

Take care.

Steph said...

Reading your archives lately! This is a really deep dive. Amazing to learn about Japanese culture. I would LOVE a heated bathtub in my home!! I used to be big on baths. I would take one almost every day and loved reading in the tub. That all changed when we had kids. Now I never take baths (it doesn't help that the kids have taken over our whirlpool tub - AHEM). I hate the cold too and it's getting cold here in the northeastern US. Blah!

K and S said...

I am glad you are enjoying the archives Steph! I love the cold because you can layer, with summer you can only take off so many pieces of clothing! and as long as I don't need to shovel snow, it will always be a novelty for this girl from Hawaii :)

Take care!