I didn’t realize how much I would miss the buses back in East Lansing. Riding on the subway trains in Japan takes a lot of patience, which is kind of hard when the train is filled to the brim with people. Japanese subway stations are probably one of the most busiest places I’ve seen during my trip. Depending on the station, everywhere you went there was sea of people trying to get to their respective trains. We also rode a few buses trying to get to some of our site visits as well, and they too can be packed. I’m used to riding on a packed bus, but this was on a whole new level. During our trip to Kyoto, the bus was so packed I had a hard time trying hang on to the railings.
But my experience with the Japanese transit system wasn’t all bad. I got to ride the Shinkansen (bullet train) a few times during our trips to and from Osaka. The main difference between riding on the Shinkansen opposed to the subway trains is that it’s sort of like riding on an airplane that’s really low to the ground. These trains are incredibly fast with speeds ranging from 186 mph. Riding on the Shinkansen can be a lot more relaxing than riding on the subway trains, which is great for long train rides. Another great thing is that these trains aren’t packed all the time! It would be great if the subways mostly used Shinkansen. People would get to their destinations much faster, and a big guy like me wouldn’t have to worry about falling on someone if the train makes a sudden stop.