Dying alone is a taboo, as if there’s no way that can be done well (although no one reputedly did so; and if there is no one would be there to tell the tale).
For three months Watanabe rotted in his bedsheets, alongside pots of instant ramen and swarming cockroaches. The day that someone eventually called, he came not out of concern but out of administration. Watanabe had run out of money, and his bank had stopped paying the rent. The exasperated landlord, Toru Suzuki, had rung and rung, but no one had picked up.
So Ghostbusters for dead people, that’s where we’re at now.
… some 60 requests for assistance a month, the majority of which are for kodokushi (dead alone). In the summer months they receive 10 requests a day. “The bodies decompose faster in the heat,” he says matter-of-factly.
I think that’s much to be said about the art of dying alone with dignity; modern individualism hasn’t done enough thinking in that department.