Comic: Shopping in the Japanese Countryside

YB_2_17 comic comics life in japan texan in tokyo cartoon

So far, Ryosuke and I have been able to survive for like 3 years here in Japan without a car. We rent one every once in a while (probably 3-4 times a year) when we want to go on a road trip or need to do heavy shopping.

Other than that, we have just gotten REALLY good at tying things to our bicycles (luggage, shelves, new microwave, etc.).

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Like these comics? Check out my comic books (on Amazon):

My Japanese Husband Thinks I’m Crazy: The Comic Book

and

My Japanese Husband (still) Thinks I’m Crazy

and

Confessions of a Texan in Tokyo

About Grace Buchele Mineta

I got into the writing business by accident. Now I live in the countryside near Tokyo with my husband, Ryosuke, where I draw comics, blog, and make videos about our daily life. Contact: Website | More Posts

21 Comments on Comic: Shopping in the Japanese Countryside

  1. You could hook up a wheelbarrow to the back of your bicycle to get big stuff home!

  2. Hahaha I feel you ! I think at this point it’s only laziness but who cares ? Bikes forever yaaay

  3. what about joining a car sharing program? is there one in your area? i tried to google search but the only one i could find atm was in tokyo….

  4. Haha it is the same for me. My boyfriend and i transported a table (the planks for it), garbage can, our new tv and more with our bikes.

  5. Good for you! It is now over 10 years and my wife and I have never had a car in Okazaki, so I know well what you are talking about. Okazaki is very very hilly so getting around by bike is murder sometimes, but we manage. One plus is our son loves the bike trips. I figure it sets a good example for him too.

  6. Good for the thighs and good for the environment! Well done.

  7. As long as it is fairly flat and not raining, riding a bike for shopping would be a good thing as far as I am concerned. We used to live in a smaller town where we could walk to shopping and many restaurants from our home. It was very nice not to have to get into one’s car and drive 10 minutes or more to do life’s regular, if not daily, chores.

  8. I wish the area that I live in was more bicycle and even walking friendly. I can’t wait to get back to Japan and eventually move there (for many more reasons than just transportation :) )

  9. That’s exactly how my first 4 years in Japan looked! XD …
    Living in the Japanese countryside without a car! XD ….
    Once I got a car, I got super lazy, though. ^^;

  10. It seems so healthy to bike but the closest “convenience store” is a few miles away from us and we have to drive almost an hour to get to a bigger store like Target so I think not owning a car is still not an option in most of us in the US. That being said, we really should bike for local trips… It is about 5 miles into the nearest town and biking there always seems like a good idea… It’s the return trip that makes me question my sanity!

  11. Eric Janson // 13 June, 2015 at 5:54 pm //

    haha!! Marvin is a Texan rabbit – I should have known ;-)

  12. Tokyo is bicycle friendly but with kids it becomes complicated . What would be nice if you get a car is road trips in your area :)

  13. I wish my country was more bike-friendly :( Here if you want to bike anywhere, there’s always the risk of getting hit by cars since cars here are crazy and there’s little to no bike lanes anywhere. So basically, bikes are right in there with the cars, trucks, buses, etc.

    • My country has the same problem. We barely have any bike lanes, and those that we have, are often used as extra sidewalks or parking space. And cars often drive or park on sidewalks. I can remember more than once, when I was walking down the street, when a car would start driving onto the sidewalk and straight at me, so I just had to move to the side.

  14. I would have died without a car the past years. When we go to buy groceries once a week (due to work we can only go saturdays) we have so much that it takes even several trips to the car to get everything into our apartment :)
    Wonder how often we need to ride the bike to the grocery store in order to take everything with us :D

  15. Ya’ll should get a motorcycle…peddling is so 20th century…

  16. Anonymous // 13 June, 2015 at 2:33 pm //

    I’ve had a car most of the time I spent here, mostly because there was no way my cat would tolerate riding tied to a bicycle. I still take the train to Tokyo, because the Yoko-Yoko has outrageous tolls.

  17. The only reason to have a driver’s license is so that, when you need to, you can legally drive.

    It’s a cool way to live if you don’t have to buy a car. Woohoo!

  18. Anonymous // 13 June, 2015 at 2:04 pm //

    This is what we do here in the Netherlands! I have learned to do many things with my bike, including trips to Ikea. The locals here are really good at transporting all sorts of things using their bike, luggage, packs of beer, a few kids at a time, and for bigger iteams something called a bakfiets is used.
    Keep up the good work with your blog and your videos! It is always a pleasure to read you and see the videos you make.

    • This is exactly what I wanted to write. After five years here in the Netherlands my bike became the extension of myself – can’t live without it.

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