Japaaan, here I come!

The 25thof February! The date, everything began. At 1 pm my plane from Zurich to Tokyo took off. My feeling was completely different than last year, when I went to Bangkok. I don’t know why, but I think I just didn’t realize it. I don’t want to say, that I wasn’t excited, because I was. Nevertheless, it just didn’t feel like I would go on a big trip.

On the one hand I was a bit scared, because everyone will tell you that in Japan, nearly no one speaks English. And my Japanese skills are very limited. Hello, how are you and Good bye doesn’t really help you when you are in trouble or want to have a conversation with someone. But well! I still kind of thought there will be always someone who will understand me. Furthermore, I was, obviously, just a bit nervous and unsure about the Japanese way of life, all the bookings I needed to make and of course how I would like the internship. On the other hand, I was pretty relaxed. I knew that I will meet a few friends from Glion, my school, in Japan and that I will never be forever alone.

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Anyway. The flight took approximately 12 hours. I was so lucky, that no one else sat next to me in the plane. Every seat was full, except the one next to me. You have no idea how happy I was to have so much space on a long-distanced flight. But nevertheless, I couldn’t really sleep, as always. I just listened to music, watched some Netflix movies (because the entertainment system in the airplane was shit), ate the “incredible” food, changed thousand times my position in hope to find the most comfortable one and pretended to sleep.

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Around 9 am I arrived in Tokyo. I could definitely feel the 8 hours difference to Germany. I just hoped that I could stay awake the whole day without falling asleep on the train or somewhere else. First of all, I needed to pass all the security controls. Everyone from the airport staff was already surprised when looking in my passport. 6 months? That’s a long time. I still didn’t realize it. Everyone else was done in like 2 minutes. I needed to stay longer, in order to get my Residence card of Japan. After that I collected my two big, heavy suitcases and tried to find the WIFI store, to pick up my little pocket WIFI. On the way a crew came to me and asked for an interview. Of course, in Japanese?! Do I look like I could speak Japanese? I don’t think so. So, he called a translator. I stood there for literally 20 minutes, just responding to there questions. It felt so weird being filmed, when you just had a 12 hours flight, without sleep. Of course, I looked perfectly made for a filmed interview.

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After I picked up my Pocket WIFI I went to the train office, where I bought the ticket into Tokyo city. Narita Airport is kind of far from the main city. 1,5-2 hours away by car, 1 hour by train. You have no idea how exhausting it was to carry all the luggage across the airport into the train. But I was happy that everything worked out as I planned it. It took time, but I mean I didn’t have anything else to do right now. I was actually proud of me that I handled it to carry both suitcases all the stairs up. From Tokyo Station I called and Uber, which I couldn’t find at first. He called me, but of course he couldn’t speak a word English. After I while I found him. Finally.

When I arrived at my hostel the staff greeted me super friendly. For a hostel it looked extremely clean and modern. I loved it already. And the location couldn’t have been better. Furthermore, they received my metro ticket pass as well as my train ticket to Kyoto, which I already booked at home. Amazing! Unfortunately, I couldn’t check in yet. That’s why I took my backpack and went for a walk through Ginza.

When I walked through the streets, I felt like everyone is watching me. Just Asians. Of course, everyone was staring at me, like I was a completely different creature they never seen before. I thought they would much more tourists, but most of the tourists here are from Korea, China or Taiwan.

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For Lunch I went to a Sushi place with a friend from Glion. He lives in the same area then my hostel is. He already started his internship here in Tokyo. The restaurant was very popular. There was a huge line in front of the store, but we didn’t mind waiting for a while. And it was worth it. I loved how the Sushi chefs “cooked” directly in front of you. And the Sushi is not comparable with the one we get in the normal Sushi shops in Europe. The quality of the fish is amazing. Lots of things I ate were new for me and sometimes I didn’t even know what I ate. But you just need to try it and most of the time it is very delicious.

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After lunch we went to Akihabara, the animé and electric town of Tokyo. Japan is probably after the food most known for all the animés. I never really watched animés or read the books, but it is a part a Japan and that’s why I wanted to see all the shops selling toys and souvenirs.

I was so happy that Taka, my Japanese friend, could speak the language and guided me through Tokyo. Th subway is quite confusing here by the way.

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Afterward we went to Ueno Park. A very pretty and quite place where many people just come to have a walk.

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On our way back to the subway station we passed a popular street, where lots of street food and clothes were selled. It already got dark and therefore the streets with their lights looked super cool.

To make a little break we went to Takas little apartment.

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Directly afterwards we made it to the Rappongi district, where a popular tower with an incredible view over Tokyo is located. I really wanted to see Tokyo by night from the top. And the best thing about this place is, that you are actually outside on the top of the roof. We had just an amazing 360 degree view over Tokyo with all the beautiful lights without any annoying windows.

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On our way back we went in a little “restaurant” to eat dinner. I`ve never seen or eaten that before, but it was delicious. You could order a bowl of rice with different toppings. Over the rice you poor “dashi”, a very delicious and unique tasting Japanese broth. It was so “oishii”.

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But now it was just time to get back to my hostel, to check in and sleep. I was surprised that I wasn’t that tired. But nevertheless, I just wanted to lay in a bed and sleep.

The hostel room was very nice and definitely one of the best hostels I ever stayed in. Everyone had their own bed with a curtain. You didn’t feel that you were sharing the room with 6 other people. I was just happy to be here and excited for the next day, where I were meeting more friends from school. Kind of crazy, how I can just go on the other side of the world and meet all my friends. Love it!

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