I decided that today’s post, will be a funny story. Living in Japan, certainly allows for some interesting cultural differences from time to time, and I happened to have encountered one that I thought everyone would appreciate hearing about.
One of my bras made it into the dryer on accident, and as a result, the wires are all bent weirdly. It is unwearable. So I had no choice, but to go bra shopping. I knew the day would come eventually. I don’t like bra shopping because of the size differences in Japan, I just don’t like bra shopping in general, because you have to try on 50 different ones, just to find the one that fits perfectly, only to discover it costs way more money than you can spend. So you end up buying one that kinds of fits, but you would rather not wear it if you had a choice.
I get to the store, and start looking at all the various options. The have the same cup letters that I am used to seeing, but the sizes are in centimeters instead of inches. I wanted to be measured, but had no idea how to ask that. I knew the word for measure in Japanese, but it was the type of measure we use for cooking, not exactly the word for sizing. So I looked up a conversion chart online, and found that they use the European sizing charts. So if you are reading this, and happen to be from Europe, then bra shopping in Japan will automatically start out easy for you.
After looking up the size I figured I was, I began looking for it. Only, that size was apparently the average size because I couldn’t find it anywhere. After looking for a long time, the lady came up to me with a measuring tape in hand and asked if I wanted to be measured. Normally, Japanese associates avoid me like the plague, so this was a pleasant surprise. I said yes because the sizing is so different. After she measures me, she tells me that I am an in-between size. Which doesn’t surprise me. Their sizes increase by 5 centimeters. They increase by 2 inches in the US. As if one gains weight in multiples. So proceeds to tell me how I need to try on a bunch of styles to see which one fits the best. I already knew that, but at least now I had a lady who could find the sizes I needed right away.
She handed me a couple to try on and I head to the dressing room. Dressing rooms are basically rooms with curtains. I get in there, and try on the first bra, check out the fit and move around to see if it will stay in place, then moved on to the next bra. Just after I unhooked it in the back, the lady asks how everything was fitting, and then just walks in. She actually walked in! There was no, “excuse me”, there was no “may I come in?” there was no warning what so ever! She just walked in! As if it were a perfectly normal thing to be doing while a complete stranger is changing. I had just unhooked the bra in the back and was ready to take it off and try the next one on. I was almost naked! Rather than act complete shocked, I just pretended I was having difficulty in hooking it in the back. She hooks it for me, making some kind of a comment on how that particular style was difficult to attach. In my mind I was thinking, “har har har, you just walked in unannounced! What is wrong with you?” After it was attached, you would think that she would just look at me and ask how it felt, no. No, that didn’t happen. She adjusted me. I’ll say that again, she adjusted me! Adjusted! She literally just reached in the bra and moved me around, to get the bra to fit just perfectly, as if it were a totally normal thing to do.
After the groping session, I tried on a couple other bras, and each time, the lady came in. Except she at least gave me a warning. I don’t know what was up with the first time of her saying nothing. I have tried on clothing before, and they have never come in the dressing room before. After this experience, I prefer doors with locks on them. No more of this curtain stuff.
I did end up finding the perfect bra. It was comfortable, it stayed in place, and was smooth enough to wear under a thin shirt without having the designs poke through conspicuously, but alas, it was too expensive. Why are all the good ones too expensive????? Why universe? I don’t understand! So I ended up getting a cheaper one, that fits, but just hates to stay in place. All of my other clothes stay where they are supposed to me, why must the bra be so independent?
Anyway, that was my experience. I hope you enjoyed it! I will be sure to tell you of any other times that are certainly an experience.