79-Japanese Squish Box – France

The Japanese have the ability to fit large groups of themselves into small spaces. Many years ago I was in Hawaii and would be waiting for a hotel elevator when a tsunami of Japanese tourists would come around the corner, surround me, lift me up, and float me into the elevator car. The elevator cars would normally hold 12 normal size Americans, but if properly stuffed, could hold 40 Japanese tourists plus me. I have further seen video of the Japanese subway during rush hour. People are packed like sardines into the cars. With that heritage, I guess the Japanese tourist would feel totally at home on the Versailles garden tour tram.

Since I was at Versailles during the winter, there wasn’t much to see in the gardens. Most everything was brown and dirty and the fountains were not operating. As I strolled around the top plaza of the gardens I noticed off in the distance a tram snaking itself through the dirt flower beds. As the tram climbed up to my level I was astonished to see plastic sided circus cars filled with Japanese tourists. Apparently, there was no ventilation in the cars and thus all of the plastic sides were fogged up. I have been to the circus many times, but this was the coolest show I had ever seen. Instead of one clown car, this was a clown train. The car doors opened up and 20 – 30 Japanese climbed out of each car. I truly expected to see shaving cream pies start flying through the air, but no such luck. A man raised a colored flag in the air and they all got in line behind him. Such organization. Where is Godzilla when you need him. Probably on Monster Island taking a nap.