Japanese homes are typically equipped with fancy Japanese bath units, but public baths, or sento, are still common facilities. Although usually frequented by the elderly, they’re starting to become cool again with young people.
One traditional aspect of sento is enjoying a cold glass of milk. No one is really sure why, but one theory is that in the 1950s, sento offered common folk luxuries rarely seen in an average home: television, washing machines and refrigerators.
As a result, milk vendors saw a strategic advantage in stocking a sento with cold milk. Thus, drinking cold milk after a hot bath became a thing. Today, milk, coffee (with milk), fruity milk and other drinks are a sento staple, but the coffee variation is the most popular flavor.
— 東大阪 第二寿湯 (@DKotobukiyu) July 4, 2021
“Drinking bottled milk at a sento seems obvious, but you actually need permission from the public health center to sell it.
As of last month, it has been changed to only require notification, but if you want to start selling new products, you will need to appoint a food hygiene supervisor. Surprisingly, there are many hurdles to selling bottled milk. If you see milk at a public bath, please give it a try!”
How to state the obvious
Based on the word 当然 (natural), 当たり前 is a common expression used to speak about things that are obvious, or in other words, “the way it is” and “the way it should be.”
- 当たり前だろう: “Of course!”
- 当たり前だ: “It goes without saying!”
- 当たり前じゃない: “Of course, not.”
- 日本では当たり前のことが海外では当たり前ではない: “What is commonplace in Japan is not commonplace in other countries.”
- 挨拶をすることは当たり前の礼儀です: “It’s common courtesy to say hello.”
- それは誰もが当たり前と考える: “It’s something we all take for granted.”
|銭湯||sentou||Public bath, bathing house|
|瓶牛乳||bingyuunyuu||Glass bottle milk|
|許可がいる||kyouka ga iru||The/a permission is necessary|
|場合は||baai ha||In the event of, in the case that|
|食品衛生責任者||shokuhineiseisekininsha||Food sanitation supervisor|
|必要になる||hitsuyou ni naru||Become necessary|
|ハードルが高い||haadoru ga takai||High hurdles|