Jun 27, 2018
I still get weirded out by people leaving their phones and wallets on the table in restaurants while they use the washroom or get food.
When my husband told me he had left his laptop on a table to use the washroom in a family restaurant, I felt uncomfortable. He uses his laptop for work and would be devastated if anyone took it. If he did the same thing in the US, it would take five minutes at most for someone to run out with it.
This is probably the number one great thing about living in Japan - we don't have to worry about pickpockets or cars being stolen. I don't recommend leaving your belongings on a table if you're leaving for more than a minute, but you're not likely to have anything stolen in Japan. People often leave their bags to hold their spot in a crowded place.
I really appreciate this aspect of Japanese culture. I haven't seen much evidence of it changing, but I think Japanese people don't generally want something that belonged to someone else.