A year (and counting) in Japan

Japan Onigiri

It’s been a little over a year since I moved to Tokyo! I read the post I wrote from right before I came and it was fun looking back at everything that’s gone on since last September. Already the second year of university, who would’ve thought it’d come so fast?

So let’s see, things that have changed…

Rilakkuma Toast

Some people call it adulting. I just think of it as staying alive. Last year I was so worried about being away from home but over time I’ve really come to like this strange new freedom I have as a university student in a foreign country. I make my own food (and make it cute) and organise my own room and go out to explore new places. Freedom! New experiences! I love it.

Mount Fuji Japan

And those new experiences have really snowballed since I came here. Spontaneous trips across the region, nights at the ryokan, part time jobs and everything else in between.

It’s like holding Mt. Fuji in the palm of my hand. It’s not even just about travelling but living a different life from what I used to. Meeting people, for one—I’ve never met so many people from so many backgrounds in my lifegirlEveryone has all these stories to tell and it’s fascinating to see how someone was brought up in another culture. And then I feel proud that I have my own to share too (the Merlion is always a hit).

Ryokan Japan

And of course Japan’s culture charms me as always. Maybe it’s because Singapore is practically a baby in this world, but I like Japanese traditions so much whether it’s wearing yukata in summer or eating kaiseki at the hot springslove girlI think I’ve been to the ryokan three times this year already. The love is real.


So after one year, what do I think of this country that I’ve looked at from afar for so long and am finally in? Living in Japan is no paradise but I don’t love it any less than I did before. I love that I get to be a part of this place for four years. Not everything is enjoyable—it’s frustrating sometimes being an outsider and getting reminded that you’re different. In some ways I might’ve become a little more insecure of myself, but because of that also had to become a little braver.

I wouldn’t expect everything to go by like a dream. My reality still has its bad days, but also a lot of cheap sushi and hidden cafes and changing seasons. And friends to enjoy all that with! It’s not all about being bedazzled by everything here anymore, but just being companionable with Japanbear


4 Responses to “A year (and counting) in Japan”

  1. 1 fluffybunnydesu October 14, 2016 at 7:09 AM

    Hey Cheryl, still alive and sane after one year already; that’s some achievement in itself!!

    As for adulting; “Adaruto shitakute adaruto dekinai” Watanabe Minayo. (^o^) Fu Fu Fu.

    Reading such positivity is encouraging; seems even this cold weather hasn’t deterred your fighting spirit.

    “First there is a mountain, then there is no mountain, then there is”.

    Like an analogy of rewarding yourself when devouring each enticing Mt.Fuji cake; may you obtain that same height of contentment whilst embarking new challenges.

    All Doing is Being as well recognised through perseverance and achievements thus yielding greater admiration and appreciation; so keep on believing and being your super cute self.

    Maintaining a Blog diary that inspires a means of expression and reflection is an intuitive and enriching endeavour towards self development.

    To openly share such engaging and insightful stories also reveals much consideration, self confidence, independent thought and maturity.

    Hang in there; think ahead to Christmas break and above all keep having fun as well enjoy discovering cute foods!!

    • 2 Cheryl October 22, 2016 at 11:16 AM

      Thank you, it’s hard but I’m looking forward to taking on more adventures and challenges while sharing the good stuff on my blog 🙂

      • 3 fluffybunnydesu October 22, 2016 at 5:51 PM

        Your stories are inspirational as well the honesty feels sincere; I wish you every success!

        Rightly so we can’t get enough of that good stuff; you always find the cutest things to share that makes Life more fun. ^^

        I especially love how your passion of food lends to such cute creativity; like the expressions on the onigiri and rilakkuma toast.

        I hope you enjoy the weekend!!! Take care.

  2. 4 All the ame October 24, 2016 at 5:31 PM

    It’s been so interesting reading about your experiences via this blog,I hope you continue to enjoy your life in Japan despite the tough times 🙂

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▷ . Cheryl

A university student in Tokyo who takes pictures and puts them on the Internet

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