Monthly Archives: July 2015

Back to Tokyo!

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Last autumn, we went on a very special holiday. I’d been looking forward to this trip for a long time. After 4 years I finally set foot on Japanese soil again and you know what!? It felt like I’d never been gone! I even managed to brush up my rusted Japanese while we were there. Since we did so many things and took tons of photos I’d like to share with you, I’ll split this up in several posts. I hope you’ll enjoy this as much as we did. So let’s get started with Tokyo, the place I’d called my home for a year back in 2009/2010.

Our trip didn’t start off as nicely as we’d hoped for. When we got to the airport in Frankfurt we learned that our first flight to London was delayed by an hour because it was too foggy for the incoming plane to land. Of course, there’d been nothing but clear skies the previous days. Oh well! Since we had 2 hours between flights we were still positive we’d make it in time. Until we finally sat on the plane and nothing happened. We had to wait for connecting passengers and by the time we got to Heathrow, we had only 10 minutes until boarding was closing. I was still hoping they’d wait for us like we’d waited for the other passengers, but of course they didn’t. The next possible flight wasn’t until 6 hours later. Bummer! But well, somehow we managed to kill the time and after a pleasant flight we finally made it to Haneda airport. We took the bus to Shinjuku station and while we were making our way into central Tokyo, so many memories popped up in my head and I was overflowing with excitement. I couldn’t wait to show M around, to take him to all the places that had been part of my life for such a long time.

From Shinjuku station it was a short subway ride to our hotel. This station can be a pain in the ass as its one of the busiest in the world with millions of passengers every day. It’s basically a maze and I got lost more than once on the search for the right train line during the first months. I’m pretty sure M had his first little culture shock there since we got there during the evening rush hour and I think he didn’t expect me to know what I was doing. But we made our way to the subway without getting lost, yay! The second cultur shock for M was when we saw the shoe box that was our hotel room.

IMG_2590I have no idea how many times we bumped into furniture or our suitcases while moving about, but that’s the way things are in Japan and we didn’t spend much time at the hotel anyway. Plus, since we were pretty high up, we had a nice view over the city.Desktop_01

After a very long sleep, it was finally time for sightseeing. First, we went to Meiji-jingu, a big shinto shrine which I’d visited many times before. Before we went inside, I made the mistake of sitting down at the bottom of a tree in front of the big entrance gate and immediately got whistled at by a guard. Ooops! Well, I was already pregnant at the time and needed a rest, so, sorry! At first, we took a stroll through the adjacent garden, a first time for me as well, then went on to the shrine itself. IMG_2723As a contrast to the tranquility of the shrine, we afterwards walked through Harajku’s Takeshita dori, a narrow street with lots of fashion boutiquesm some of them selling pretty extraodinary clothes (even for Japanese standards). IMG_2741From there, we walked down to Shibuya, a part of the city I’d spent a lot of time at since I’d worked there and had frequently gone out for after work drinks in the area. I’d always loved standing at the famous Shibuya crossing, waiting for the lights to turn green and then letting myself drift along with the crowd. Standing there again after such a long time was a very special moment for me, kind of magical. Desktop_05We walked around on Center Gai for a bit, a shopping street with colourful stores and neon lights, pretty popular among the youth. IMG_2810When we got hungry, I rembered a sushi restaurant I’d been to several times before and after searching around for a bit, I finally found it. It wasn’t the same chain as before, but a way cooler one. You could order your sushi via a screen and after a few minutes the food arrived on a little train. What an awesome idea! Since I was pregnant and in Germany doctors recommend not to eat raw food, I decided to stick to the non-raw and veggie options. When I saw M indulging in all the sushi goodness, I felt tempted to try just one piece, but I didn’t dare. Japanese women would probably laugh at me, but well, there were plenty of other great things to eat waiting for me on the trip, so it was ok. IMG_2779Since the cafe I used to work at was only a short walk from the restaurant, we decided to pay it a visit after dinner. But unfortunately I had to find out that the place had been closed down. I have to admit that this made me pretty sad since I had hoped to see some of my former colleagues. On the other hand, it wasn’t such a big surprise to see a place had vanished since Tokyo is constantly changing and doing so pretty fast. So we took the train back to Shinjuku and went for an evening stroll in the Kabuki-cho area, an entertainment district, and through the bar-lined alleys of Golden Gai. All in all, it was an awesome first day back in Japan.IMG_2816

Hello again!

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Oh wow, it’s been such a long time since I’ve made an appearance here. Over a year, I can’t believe it! And to be honest, I don’t really know how to start after such a long hiatus. Should I just continue where I stopped? Or should I explain? I don’t even know how it came to that long break from blogging. There were many times during the past year when I had an idea for a post and made a note in my mind to write it down. Sometime. But then for some reason the urge to write wasn’t strong enough and quickly I had other things on my mind. And somehow, over time I forgot that this blog even existed.

This past year, there was so much going on in my personal life that I somehow lost my interest in creating things. Not only did I stop blogging, I also stopped making music. Partly, this was due to a lack of time, but mostly because I was busy creating something else. Probably the most amazing “thing” a human being is able to create. A miracle. And I gave birth to that miracle 11 weeks ago. That’s right, I am the mother of a beautiful baby girl now! 🙂 The cutest baby in the world (of course!). I still have to pinch myself from time to time to make sure this is not just a dream. That we really are parents now. And I can’t help but think that life does have its funny ways. When I started this blog back in 2011, having a baby wasn’t on my mind at all. To be honest, starting a family seemed more like the opposite of how I wanted my life to be at the time. When I was younger, I was sure I wanted to have kids one day. But when I was approaching 30, I wasn’t that sure anymore. There were still so many things I wanted to do and see and explore. And I certainly didn’t feel mature enough to raise another human being. Then, when I met the boyfriend (who is now my husband btw, I know, crazy, right!?) my view changed again. Early into our relationship, we had the kids talk and were both sure we wanted to have children together. One day.

That day came sooner than I thought though. One day it just hit me out of the blue. Suddenly, the world was full of pregnant women and young mothers with babies. And I wanted nothing more than being one of them. Immediately. I had no idea where that utter wish to have a baby suddenly came from. But it was there, not willing to leave me alone anytime soon. Of course, I talked to the boyfriend about it who wasn’t as enthusiastic as me about the idea of having a baby. Not just yet. But over time, he grew more and more fond of the idea and so one day in June we just decided to go for it. 2 months later I peed on a stick and a magical pink line appeared. I remember that day like it was yesterday. How we were standing in the bathroom looking at that piece of plastic in disbelief. It was one of the happiest days of my life, only to be topped by the day we said “yes” to each other and the moment we heard the first scream of our daughter.

And now here I am, writing a new blog post while our cute little baby (who is actually not that little anymore, they’re growing so fast!) is peacefully sleeping next to me. Oh wait, did I say peacefully? Of course, she just woke up screaming at that very moment I wrote the word “peacefully” down. No kidding! So, I gotta go for now. But I promise I’ll be back soon. I’m not sure how often I’ll actually be able to post something because it’s not entirely up to me anymore how I spend my time. But I promise it won’t be another year. And I also promise it won’t just be all about babies from now on. Because I’m still me. Even though being a Mom is making up most of my days now, I’m more than that. I’m still a dreamer, a traveller, a music lover and so much more. My life is still an adventure, probably more than ever. So I hope you’re staying around.