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Snow That…Shovels Itself?

Check out the snow dustpans!

So, remember my shock and amazement when I discovered how Japanese streets clean themselves without benefit of municipal street sweepers?

Well guess what? – that’s how they shovel and plow themselves too! Check out these salarymen in their black suits, out on the shopping street near my school on the morning after it snowed – they all came to work early to diligently clear the street in front of their office!

Later I saw another group of office workers out in front of the building next to my school, attacking the snow that had been trampled into icy brickitude around the vending machines. Not only were they wielding snow shovels and snow dustpans, they were using several kinds of stiff, green-bristled broom-things to scrub away at the bits and pieces not scraped clean by the shovels. I felt kind of bad for them, because it looked about as rewarding as trying to scrub a basketball court with a toothbrush.

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Jonelle Patrick View All

Writing mystery books set in Tokyo is mostly what I do, but I also blog about the odd stuff I see every day in Japan. I'm a graduate of Stanford University and the Sendagaya Japanese Institute in Tokyo, and a member of the International Thriller Writers, the Mystery Writers of America, and Sisters In Crime. When I'm not in Tokyo, I live in San Francisco. I also host a travel site called The Tokyo Guide I Wish I'd Had, so if you're headed to Japan and want to check out the places I take my friends when they're in town, take a look!

3 thoughts on “Snow That…Shovels Itself? Leave a comment

  1. yes this is the way I remove snow in front of my home in PA. But I don’t do it all at one time, I remove small amount every day until I am done or until the next snow comes down. The systematic way the Japanese people do things is great, for years I admired Japan and for years I apply their systments to my work and home and family and rally works. Great Thanks for posting this pic.

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