July 30, 2008

More Reasons to Heart Japan

I've been getting sick of Japan. It's sooooooo HOT. And HUMID. I sweat and sweat and take cold showers twice a day and still I'm sweaty and stinky. It's enough to get a girl homesick for socal.

But then, Japan does it again. It makes my heart pitter patter. How? Haircut and dentist. That's right. That's all it took. For $42 US, I got a totally awesome haircut, head and neck massage, and they put Dumbo on for G in a chair right next to me (with a complimentary glass of Calpis for her). No tip. I heart no tips. Sigh.

And who hearts the dentist? Well, I do love Rosie my hygienist in the burg, but I haven't seen her in ages. I haven't been to the dentist in ages, because who can afford to pay when you don't have insurance? With Japanese national health insurance, I finally got my choppers in to be cleaned and repaired. I knew I had at least one little cavity. Dr. Mountain House (Yamauchi) got me in Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. I had a cleaning, 4 ancient mercury amalgam fillings changed for pretty white tooth-colored ones and two cavities filled. And the price tag? 100 smackeroos. I should see how much a boob job costs, it's gotta be a bargain. (that's a joke, btw.)

As much as I love the US, the only times I've had good health care since getting married were when I was Taiwan and now here in Japan. We pay $150 a month for all four of us here in Japan and get 70% of doctor, dentist, and eye exams covered.


  1. hi bekah!

    so you are leaving japan? Where are you headed next? Did you know Grace had her 4th baby? it's a boy. anyway. love reading your blog.

    we are still in Laie.

  2. I hear ya! I've been thinking the same thing as I've been examining our new health plan. The options have changed a lot since we lived in the US last, and compared to what we were getting in Japan, what we will be getting now is way more than just a little bit depressing.

  3. I like the boob job idea ... maybe I should move there in a year or two?

    We saw a very interesting PBS program highlighting several countries who had national health care, Japan being one. The downside (for us it would be) is that the doctors there have to see 80 to 100 patients a day just to make ends meet. And they still don't make much. So they are not a very happy part of the population. Here in the US doctors see 20-40 patients a day and people still complain of not getting enough time with their doctors and paying too much. Cuts both ways, uh?

  4. I just reread my comment, and lest I seem insensitive to high healthcare costs, let me explain because we've seen both sides, spending a huge part of our loan for health care through our education. The problem here is the middle man ... the for-profit companies that take large sums and give doctors 20 percent of that for doing the work. If we had a system like Sweden or Germany where health care is non-profit multi-payer system (not administered by gov't b/c they can't do anything right), so people payed a less for care and doctors are paid, well the same or a little less, but some cat isn't getting fat on it, well, doesn't that sound better?

    Anywho, I'll get off my soapbox ... sorry to highjack this :)


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