Rainy season, called tsuyu, is the bane of many an ALT’s existence. It will rain. A lot. And you will hate it, no matter how much you “love rain.” Even on days when there is little to no rain, the pervasive cloud cover will mess with your emotions as well as your perception of time. The rainy season also comes in conjunction with the rising summer heat, so it’s especially humid. In such an environment, light, breathable clothing and waterproof coverings are a godsend.
You can buy rain gear here, but if you have rain gear you’re particularly fond of, you may want to bring it along. You can get plastic ponchos, jackets, and/or pants readily at many Daiso’s and convenience stores. However, they’re usually only good for a few uses and are not very breathable. We recommend investing in a decent set that at least breathes a bit, otherwise you’ll wind up a sweaty mess even if the rain stayed off.
ALTs who walk or bike to work often bring a towel and/or a change of clothes with them to work during the rainy season. This way, if your clothes get wet or if you’ve just gotten too sweaty on the ride to work, you have some fresh clothes to actually wear for the day. Bringing a spare hairdryer to keep at school (or befriending a coworker who has one 😉 ) is a great way to keep your hair from dripping down your back all day. Most schools will have a changing room for teachers, so be sure to ask about it and get yourself a locker. This is where you can store your hairdryer, dry clothes, emergency blazer and towel. If there are no lockers, you can also store things at your desk or in your storage area if you have one.