Kuramoto Diary＃527-【Life in New York: Chapter3】
☆Is the U.S. “sloppy”?
Yes, it is. However, this does not apply to everything; “sloppy” may be just “partially limited” to detail things. For example, even if such strict safety and hygiene standards, faucet fittings are unnecessarily big compared to the size of hand-washing sink when looking at facilities of our brewery in NY. This actually makes us extremely hard to wash our hands without splattering water around the sink. We just wonder what they are thinking. Every single thing seems like “One instance shows all.” These details were not clear to us when we were looking at the blueprints, and we only realized it after the project was finished… In other words, we must be aware that the U.S and Japan do not have the same culture when it comes to detailed work.
However, for the sake of honor of the U.S. we must tell that people in the U.S. have a great deal of responsiveness and sense of what are important and essential. I have also heard such voice of admiration from many Japanese business people stationed in the U.S., and such positive aspects were clearly shown during the circumstance of COVID-19 pandemic.
There were, of course, many problems in the initial response to the deaths, which were 100 times larger than that of Japan, and in dealing with the poor, but the response of the U.S. government was swift and amazing. For example, preparing the hospital vessels with several thousand beds at NY off-shore immediately, building and operating a lot of hospitals such as field hospital to accommodate large number of patients were some of the cases
Additionally, as soon as the major variant of Covid-19 was shifted to the Omicron variant, the rate of mortality and serious illness among infected patients had settled down, the entire country shifted at once to a new life style known as “with Corona”, and everyone returned to a normal life like before to rebuild the U.S. People were impressed by the solidarity of people in the U.S. Hearing this, I felt I saw a weakness in the Japanese national character; people in Japan don’t trust the government no matter how much the government announced that “people can take off their mask outside” and “get bac their normal life.” (I’m sure some people will get angry with me when I write the above-mentioned point.) So, people in the U.S. as nationality has both merit and demerit.
However, one of the issues is the fact that Japanese Sake, especially DASSAI, is made based on accumulation of far elaborate technology. DASSAI cannot be made without this point. The same applies to DASSAI Blue. We can only make DASSAI Blue if our American staff, who have the ability to understand and implement the big issues but are(supposedly)too “sloppy” to deal with the detailed work, understand the fact. The challenge has just begun.
While I was saying that water leaked from the ceiling of koji making room! My face turned pale thinking “This is not good. The ceiling construction of the koji making room might be so rough that moisture accumulated and fell in.” or “In the first place, the concept of insulation was not included (or not enough) in the blueprint, and moisture is accumulating.” However, when I went up over the ceiling of the koji room, we found that the freezing dryer was initially defective, causing water leakage. I was relieved for a moment. In the first place, in Japan, there would be no such initial defects! There would be still long way to go.
Furthermore, when I went up over the ceiling, I found it was still dirty as if it was just after the construction work. Wrapping paper for wooden panel, etc. were also left behind. Most probably, there is a pretty big difference between in value the U.S. and Japan.
We have still made koji rice just twice, but the quality of koji rice is so-so. Please look forward to it.