I started writing this blog back in Seoul, Korea, and somehow it followed me all the way to Japan, via a short hiatus in Montreal. This blog was always, and still is, a diary to me. Although I often write about cultural aspects of Japan, I am by no means an expert on Japanese culture, and I'm still learning so much every day. I mostly enjoy trying different things, then sharing about it. I have mostly positive feelings about Japan and that's what I convey on my blog- not as an illusion to please readers, but because that's how I truly feel. I never wanted this blog to be a place to criticize Japan.
My experience in Japan has been extremely positive thus far, despite some difficult moments, but those are just part of the journey. When I started writing this blog five years ago, I had been completely unexposed to Korean (and Japanese) cultures, and I jumped into Korea unprepared and not knowing what I was getting into. It resulted in a strong culture shock and homesickness for the most part, but it shaped me as a person and left me craving for more.
Japan was a different story- I was prepared, and determined to do this on my own. Japan has been a lot easier than Korea for the cultural aspects, but the loneliness and isolation I've experienced at the beginning (and still sometimes) was one of the most challenging things I've ever had to deal with. My life is not perfect.
Japan has been all about growing as a person, as cliché as it sounds. I tried lots of different things, such as regions, living arrangements, and even lifestyles. My first year in Japan revolved around exploring the country, traveling every weekend and getting excited at daily things (OMG PANDA SHAPED BOTTLES and PANCAKE FLAVOURED DRINKS!!), and my first year in Tokyo was a complete blur of all-nighters, street drinks and very hazy memories.
I ditched the high heels, the red lipstick and the drunken walks home several months ago because I got so exhausted of that lifestyle, physically and mentally. I wanted to be healthy, balanced and rested, and be more productive and advance in my career- which has been paying off. I also came to Japan to learn about the culture and language, and dancing all night at Trump Room did not teach me much, despite how fun it was.
So here I am, five years later. I live and work in Tokyo, and well, I pay very high city taxes to live here. I find Tokyo to be very expensive and that's my main concern at this point. I love what I do for a living, and I equally love my (frugal) lifestyle now. I am endlessly exploring Tokyo and some other aspects of the culture, such as the language. I have a warm and cozy home, a few handfuls of close friends I adore, and the kindest, most supportive and funniest boyfriend a girl could wish for. This is real life.
Thanks for reading this blog and for all your kindness over the years.