Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Won't Miss #298 - Japanese way of washing dishes

It's odd how it's the little things that really hit you sometimes about life in a different culture. One of my students went to Germany and said that she was really bothered because they didn't rinse the soapy water off of their dishes after cleaning them, but just put them on the rack to dry.* In Japan, the sinks are designed differently than back in the U.S. There, we had a sink with two sections and a little plug in each so you could fill each side with water. You washed the dishes in one half and put them in clean water to rinse on the other side. This allowed you to save water and was generally faster than the Japanese way in which you have to leave the water running constantly and rinse each item separately in the running water or use a basin (which is too small for any but the smallest dishes in the smallest quantities and never works for someone like me who cooks a lot). The Japanese sinks I've encountered are designed not only with one section, but also without a drain plug because landlords are afraid you're so stupid that you'll leave the water running and flood the kitchen.

This way of doing dishes is very wasteful in terms of water usage and takes longer, and I won't miss it.

*I do not know if this is true or not of all German people or if she even misunderstood what she witnessed. I merely report what she said.