December 22, 2009

So I want to apologize for not updating in this as often as I would like.  I’m surprised to see on the statistics that people still visit this site even though I haven’t even looked at my blog in over 2 months.  It’s not like nothing crazy has been happening, rather the contrary…

Today while riding my bike I got pulled over by a cop.  He spoke to me in Japanese for about 30 seconds without a break until I awkwardly interrupted him saying “sorry I don’t speak any Japanese”.  He then continued to speak in Japanese, but this time with hand gestures.  I put two and two together and figured he was asking me for my license and registration.   I took out my ID and my bike registration and handed it to him.  After he spoke more Japanese, he pointed at what the problem was:

the reason why the cop pulled me over...broken basket

So apparently it’s illegal to ride your bike with a broken basket.  It’s also illegal to:

  • ride while on the cell phone
  • ride while intoxicated
  • ride while holding an umbrella
  • ride with someone sitting on the back
  • ride at night without your lights on

Fines are 20,000 yen and up ($220).  Luckily, since I was a gaijin (foreigner in Japanese), he let it slide.  I was the first person on my team to get pulled over by a cop.  Today was just not a good day.

and yes, that is my bright orange bike.  it’s easier to find in a sea of bikes (just a little).


One Response to “woops”

  1. Jerome said

    That’s a pretty hefty fine, but considering how almost everyone in Japan has a bike I guess they’d make more specific traffic laws. Good to hear you got out relatively unscathed.

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