Getting Wet: Adventures in the Japanese Bath
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Getting Wet: Adventures in the Japanese Bath

3.76 of 5 stars 3.76  ·  rating details  ·  38 ratings  ·  6 reviews
Eric Talmadge takes a joyful, first-person plunge into the depths of Japan's bathing culture-joining the millions of Japanese who not only bathe every day, but find it a must to travel the country on a search for the perfect bathing experience.
From bathing "theme parks" which come complete with tubs for your pets, to the luxurious dinners served in the rarified atmosphere...more
Hardcover, 255 pages
Published October 1st 2006 by Kodansha (first published August 18th 2006)
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An excellent, hard to describe book that discusses the place of the bath is Japan, both past and present. It is a constant surprise, and it really made me want to go to Japan and take lots of hot baths with my fiance in the disappearing bathhouses. We could drink a cold yogurt afterward and then walk down the street in our yukata and clogs, gathering odd looks all the way. Only problem is we could not take the baths together in the bathhouses.
Well the first half was was big bore, lots of facts and stats that weren't too interesting. He went back and forth a lot from trying to tell a story to reporting facts. So at times there seemed like a nice flow was building only to be interrupted witha plethora of facts. Plus there was one sentence that really bugged me, he talks about Hello Killy figurines smiling at him, and I'm like, "uh, hello...she has no mouth!" The second half picked up and got pretty interesting, the whole keeping foreig...more
Nov 23, 2007 Davin rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: people interested in Japan
Shelves: japanisme
The bath is something different in Japan than it is in the West. Getting clean isn't the point, you do that before you get in. It's about the soak, for 10-15 minutes in really hot water. Not surprisingly the Japanese are fanatical about it. This book relates that fanaticism from early history to recent hot springs scandals and it looks at the various forms bathing takes - traditional municipal baths, mineral spas that have been visited for over 1000 years, radioactive springs, modern theme park...more
Gothicbunny Groves
Currently, I've been using the public transportation system and this book was perfect for filling the time. Plenty of history and data in book, at times it was a bit too much, yet knowing the back story made other parts of the book even more interesting. The chapter on radioactive hot springs fascinated me.

Carson McFarlane
After visiting both onsens and sentos in Japan earlier this year, I really enjoyed Eric's book about bathing in Japan. He's given me a few places to put on the bucket list, although I may pass on the radon baths!
Jun 05, 2007 Jennifer rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: travelers, people who like narrative non-fiction, bathers
I knew nothing about Japanese baths or Japanese bathing habits. Talmedge (sp) took me on a historical and current tour of Japanese baths. Now, I wish I could partake! It was entertaining and interesting.
Bashanne marked it as to-read
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