Saturday, September 17, 2011

My Shimokitazawa Room

My Shimo room:

This is the room I moved into, in the lovely Tokyo neighbourhood of Shimokitazawa. I've been meaning to post pictures for a long time, but I haven't had any time to really unpack since I moved in... last month. I love my room, it's covered in tatami floors, and the closets are roomy. I'm back to sleeping on a traditional futon, which I had really missed. The walls are pretty bare as I like a minimalist decor, but it already feels very cozy. I need to spruce up the wall with more pictures, which I shall soon do with my usual style collages.

I live in a big, older traditional Japanese home. A few rooms are covered in tatami floors, while others are wooden floors. There are two stories, and a nice wooden staircase. The house is so warm and cozy, and I love the smell of the tatami mats. My room has a large balcony, overlooking loads of trees and the beautiful, vintage Shimokitazawa.

Funny story: The house I now live in used to be home to my Japanese friend Yoshi, who has moved to Germany last year. I spent New Years 2010 and Golden Week 2010 in this very house- I had no idea until the day I moved in. Another one of our mutual friends also lived here in between. This house has special memories for me, and I've already hosted Isabel and some other friends in my bedroom, which has been lovely.

I really enjoy having housemates, as it's a truly typical Japanese (and international) experience. I also put an end to all that loneliness and isolation I've experienced for the past two years- it really makes a difference to make small talk with my roommates on a daily basis, even if it's just for five minutes in the kitchen.

If you plan on moving to a big city in Japan, such as Tokyo or Osaka, I highly recommend finding roommates. Room shares are not very common in Japan, as people tend to live individually, but bigger cities have loads of options for roommates.


Anonymous said...

What a funny coincidence that your friend lived there before you! Your house sounds very nice. Also, I'm glad to hear that loneliness/isolation situation is much better now. :)

On a latter note, thanks for posting that link to Tokyo Rising. I had heard about it, but I didn't know it was available online.

- Carmen.

Anonymous said...

So cool. Yeah, living with people makes such a big difference, especially if living alone gets you down. Seems like everything in Tokyo is working out so perfectly for you!