Speaking of cats, I've written before about how much the Japanese love them, regularly turning the furry felines into "Internet pet idols" and traveling for miles to visit famous cats like Tama the Stationmaster or the residents of the Cat Temple in Fukui Prefecture. If you really love cats, why not come to Japan and go to a "cat cafe"? It's a variation on the basic Internet cafe model where patrons with too much time on their hands pay a fee to relax in a pleasant space where they can drink coffee, access computers and read manga, but these establishments add lots of adorable cats to the mix. Visitors spend hours playing with the cats, which is a soothing experience the Japanese call "neko therapy." It's quite a popular concept, and there are almost 150 of these cat cafes in Japan now, with names like Neko Cafe Calm, Cat's Time and (my favorite) Curl Up Cafe.
Tthe Japanese really love cats. You have no idea.