1 Year Anniversary In Tokyo!

It has been one amazing year of living in Tokyo!

I can’t believe how quickly time has flown by, and every single day, I feel so incredibly lucky and blessed to be living in this incredible city!

People ask me what it’s like living in Tokyo, so I’d like to share my experiences and what I’ve learnt over the past year.

The Punctuality Of The Japanese

I love how when you make plans with the Japanese, they are never, ever late. And even if they are late, they will text you, let you know their late, apologize, and their ‘late’ is probably only 5 minutes late. MALAYSIANS – we could learn from this!

The Hospitality Of The Japanese

I will never forget on my first day of being in Tokyo, my girlfriend Anna, whom I had met once before moving to Japan, brought me on a walking tour around Shibuya to Daikanyama to show me around. That night, another friend Kumiko invited me to her house to have dinner with her and her husband. I’m not sure if they realized it, but they made me feel extremely welcome. Thank you so much, Anna and Kumi! It was a really great start to Tokyo.

The Kindness Of The Japanese

The Japanese always go out of their way for you. Once, I was lost in Roponggi trying to look for a hospital. The taxi driver had dropped me off in the wrong building. I randomly went into one of the offices and asked a lady how to get to the hospital. She didn’t know herself, but she spent a good 15 minutes with me walking up and down the street looking for it. I thanked her a lot, and she told me she had a daughter my age and she was just being a ‘mummy’. Another friend of mine, Yurie, also always accompanied me to be my translator when I had to visit the eye doctor. This is a painfully boring task for her, but she was always extremely kind about it and said it was no problem.

The Inspiration Of Tokyo

I’m not sure what it is about this city, but I feel more inspired and alive than ever before. Perhaps it’s being in a foreign land, where you’re an alien to a lot of things which seem normal, but I feel so much more inspired to do things here, for example, starting this website. It’s hard not to feel inspired when you’re in this city which is so different!

So Many Cool People

I have met so many amazing people here, both Japanese and non Japanese! People who are encouraging, kind, have their own passions and are enablers instead of nay-sayers. It makes dreams and goals a lot more achievable when you’re surrounded with positive people.

The Feeling Of Home 

I have a bunch of South East Asian friends here – mainly Singaporean, but with a smattering of Malaysian and Indonesian. It just feels like being at home when I’m with them, when I hear these familiar accents.

I Appreciate Malaysia More

When I lived in Malaysia, I grumbled a lot about corruption, how unsafe it was, and the copious amounts of discrimination you face in your daily life. When I go back, these things are still there, but it’s made me realize that a lot of my Malaysian friends are really strong fighters, going through the challenges of every day, and all with a lot of warmth. I’ve also started appreciating much more how genuine my fellow countrymen are!

The Mama Bear

I’m lucky because I’ve really met someone who really takes care of me. I haven’t experienced this in a really long time, and makes life a lot better when you know someone has your back! “Come to mama!!” she likes to say!!

A Partner Who’s Always There

And last, but not least, living in Tokyo would definitely not have been as fun if my boyfriend hadn’t joined me in this adventure. After all, home is where the heart is.

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Ann Jie

Loves good conversations and hates small talk. Finds people fascinating and wonders why meanies exist. Loves writing violent, graphic short stories but finds horror movies too scary to watch. Follow me on Instagram @annjieslices or tweet me a slice of YOUR life at @annjieslices!

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