It’s hard to be an adult (in a foreign country)

It’s now been a few weeks since I started my internship in Tokyo and last Saturday I finally moved into my apartment! This marks the official start of my life in Tokyo and I couldn’t be happier with the area I live in; it’s the dream-come-true of any hipster.

But let me tell you, getting here wasn’t all Pokemon Go and Totoro (ok, a little Pokemon Go was involved), I had a rough couple weeks trying to organize everything while going to work from my friend’s place. I know Japan might be a great tourist destination even if you can’t speak Japanese, but finding an apartment and living here is not as easy and fun. Even for me, being fluent in Japanese, dealing with all the contracts and paperwork was quite a wakeup call; it’s definitely not easy to be an adult, especially in Japan.

Of course there are lodging facilities especially made for foreigners or organizations that help you with all the bureaucracy, but the reality of Japan is that most official institutions only work in Japanese. I had to send a thousand emails and make a dozen phone calls, all in Japanese just to get a 5 page contract in front of me -again in Japanese.

At this point I was pretty much in tears (haha). 

And the worst part is that there is literally no one that can save you. You are by yourself in the deepest way; no family, no friends who could actually put that much time in you, even my boyfriend didn’t know how these things worked + he lives 2h away.

This must be what adulthood feels like (haha)

I now understand how easy it is to live in your own country, because in Finland I wouldn’t even need to stress about these things since at least I could understand the language to the fullest. It’s crazy how much you have to put effort into just being able to stay and function in a country that’s not your own. I have so much respect for people coming to Finland and choosing to stay (I probably wouldn’t).

But the important part is that I survived and I’m now happily living in my tiny room in Naka-Meguro aka the best part of Tokyo. I still have a couple calls to make and a bank account to re-setup in my to-do list, but now I feel like I can do anything.

If you’re reading this just remember that you can and will survive anything if you want it enough! (ノ≧∀≦)ノ Look at me- I’m living my dreams in Japan even if it’s not easy at times.

Anni

1.10.2018

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