Japan really is a safe place. I never really thought about it much before because it just seems normal here. But here are some examples.
I never have to zip my purse shut or worry about it opening when Im shopping or walking around town. If someone bumps into me in a busy place, I dont panic and check the contents of my purse. I know everything is still in there and the brushing was just an accident. Likewise, men often have large wallets sticking out of their back pockets. It would be so easy to take them if someone were so inclined, but it just doesnt happen.
Last week, my Japanese teacher went to Mt. Fuji with her husband. Afterward, they went to a restaurant for dinner. When it was time to leave, she and her husband both realized that neither of them had the car keys. They walked out to the car and discovered that they had left the car unlocked and the keys in the ignition. After an hour in that restaurant, no one had taken their car.
Last week, my friend Deanna left her keys in her bike all day. And her bike was sitting in a public place. But no one bothered her bike at all, even though it would have been all too easy to just ride off with it. Likewise, both Jen and I have left our bike keys in our bike for long periods of time in various places, and they have never been stolen.