This article was a most interesting read, and the dissenting comments even more so, if somewhat shocking for me. I must say that reading stuff like this makes me all the more grateful for living at the centre of a dynamic Japanese city: here we have all the benefits of urban life (work/cultural/educational opportunities galore, brilliant public transport, high-speed trains, workable airports, decent coffee, gourmet pet food, Hello Kitty stores), and very few of the drawbacks (guns, drugs, violent crime, annoying tourists, meter maids on every corner). Life is most assuredly not perfect here, or even close to perfect, but it’s pretty darned good for the majority, including me.
Of course, I could always move to a suburb or a small town or even – perish the thought! – back to ghastly New Zealand, if I wanted a quieter, safer, less polluted life … but I’d probably die rapidly of boredom anyway, which would be somewhat defeating the purpose, no?