462 Onsens

Ruth and Akane talk about onsens in Japan.

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Akane: Hi, Ruth!

Ruth: Oh, hi.

Akane: So, what did you do today?

Ruth: That's a good question. Actually, today, I went to the onsen.

Akane: Oh, the onsen. What's an onsen?

Ruth: An onsen is a public bath and people go there, basically just to sit in hot water, and it's, it's a bit like a spa and it's really relaxing. You just sit there and don't do anything really because it's so warm. It's really nice.

Akane: Oh, OK. Well, what did you think about it?

Ruth: I really enjoyed myself. I'd never been to an onsen before, so today was my first experience and I am quite British and you have to go in with no clothes on so I was a little bit concerned about that, but it went OK.

Akane: Oh, OK. Well, are you going to tell your friends and family that you did that?

Ruth: Um, I think probably I will tell them, and I think they might listen to this actually, so

Akane: And how do you think they'll feel about that?

Ruth: They'll probably think it's really funny. Yeah, I think they'll laugh.

Akane:OK, well, actually, I've been to an onsen too before.

Ruth: Oh, really!

Akane:Yes I have. I actually, do really enjoy it. I think it's very relaxing. If you go to the big onsens, they have lots of different kinds of baths and one of them is called the "Electric Bath" and when you go into it you feel little tiny electric shocks and it's supposed to be good to increase your blood circulation, apparently.

Ruth: Does it hurt?

Akane:When I went into that one I was very little, so I thought it hurt and I didn't really like it

Learn Vocabulary from the lesson

public bath

An onsen is a public bath, and people go there basically just to sit in hot water.

A 'public bath' is a communal place where people can go to relax in hot water. Notice the following:

  1. Public baths are very popular here.
  2. Did you go to public bath in Turkey?

spa or relaxing

An onsen is a bit like a spa and it's really relaxing.

You go to a 'spa' to relax or get a massage.  When something is 'relaxing,' it helps you reduce stress.  Notice the following:

  1. For my birthday he got me a day at the spa.
  2. A hot bath sounds really relaxing right now.

concerned about

You have to go in with no clothes on, so I was a little bit concerned about that.

If you are 'concerned about' about something, it makes you feel a little bit worried or nervous.  Notice the following:

  1. She always gets really concerned about everything when she travels.
  2. You seem very concerned about him.

electric shocks

The big onsens have different kinds of bath, including one where you feel little tiny electric shocks.

An 'electric shock' is like a flash of electricity into your body.  It usually doesn't hurt too bad, but scares you and makes you move away from what shocked you.  Notice the following:

  1. When I use this machine, you will feel little electric shocks on your back.
  2. The air is really dry today.  I keep getting little electric shocks when I touch things.

blood circulation

Apparently, the "Electric Bath" is supposed to be good to increase your blood circulation.

Your 'blood circulation' is the movement of blood through your body. Notice the following:

  1. This medicine will help you with blood circulation.
  2. She has a lot of problems with blood circulation in her legs.
Answer the following questions about the interview.

Keep Listening

Below are some more great lessons!

Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
public • relaxing • spa
concerned • shocks • circulation
  1. The fence gives little electric to the animals if they get too close.
  2. He needs daily massages in his legs to increase blood .
  3. Let's just rent a movie and have a night at home.
  4. I have an appointment at the today for a massage.
  5. When you're in Japan, you have to go to a bath.
  6. He seems really distracted. I think he's about work.