5 things you need to know before traveling to Tokyo.

I’ve been living in Tokyo for a year now and it’s a beautiful and exciting place to visit. I’m often asked a lot of questions from people interested in visiting and I thought I’d put together a few things that I think are important to know before coming to visit. Here they are… There are no public trash cans. Or very few, rather. There are bins that collect bottles and cans near vending machines and sometimes outside of conbinis (convenience stores). But don’t bank on these being everywhere. It’s not uncommon to have bags of trash in your book bag because there is nowhere…

I have a thing for coffee shops. 

Seriously. It’s almost an addiction at this point. And I’ve only become a connoisseur of coffee for the last few years, so this has been developing over a short time. Before, I would generally just go for Starbucks, but as they say: once you know better, you do better. The ambiance, the decor and of course, anything coffee and coffee snack related. The mix of casual and comfort, but each place I go has been able to develop its own autonomy in this buddying culture. But what I have come to love most is the feeling of being in a creative space…

The weekend wanderlust.

A summary of this week’s victories, lessons and roustabouts. This week was busy and challenging. So, we didn’t go out to the Jamaican Festival in Odaiba like we planned. We didn’t hang out with friends for brunch. We didn’t go to playdates or even go outside for too long. This weekend we engaged in some serious self-care. For the boy, that meant blowing bubbles on the patio. Me, I took several naps. We went to the school’s graduation today and shortly after it was over, we went home. Sometimes you just need to love on the ones you love.

The weekend wanderlust.

A summary of this week’s victories, lessons and roustabouts. This weekend we met up with a friend from London who was visiting Tokyo for the week. We decided to explore Odaiba and entertain the children for a few hours. After eating lunch, we found ourselves at Lego Land Discovery Center and spent way too much time there. Afterward we went walking on the dock and found hover boards bubbles. My sense of adventure is halted at the risk of losing my balance and breaking my neck, so I didn’t try it. It was a very long and exhausting day chasing…

The weekend wanderlust.

A summary of this week’s victories, lessons and roustabouts. The last few weeks have been busy and I’ve been an uncharacteristically social butterfly. We’ve gone to barbecues at the Air Force Base, entertained friends traveling through Tokyo, and even met up with local ones and had sleep overs. I’m utterly exhausted. So, this weekend I planned for us to be lazy and not get out at all. Saturday was amazing. I barely had clothes on and took two of the most glorious naps known to man. It was needed and absolutely welcomed. However, this bliss was short-lived because on Sunday the boy had…

We went to a UFC fight this weekend. 

   There he is. My boy. All excited after waking up at 5:30 to ride the train to Saitama to see grown ass, muscular, sweaty men pummel each other. It was awesome, actually. Clearly he and I were watching for two different reasons, but we both had a fun time together. I, personally, enjoyed my kid’s commentary the whole day.  Here are a few highlights: “If you’re gonna scream like a school girl every time the guy with the beard comes out then you might as well go up there and drink beer. It’s not like you’re gonna date him…

One month later…

It’s been a month since we arrived in Tokyo. And in the last 30 days, we have experienced two typhoons, an earthquake, many tears, more laughs, several visits to Ikea, and far too many meals at fast food restaurants. It has been challenging, to say the least. But now we are settled into our apartment. Jumping head first into work and school, we have not had much time to explore Tokyo, but we are looking forward to more lazy Sundays and free weekends to be tourists in this city we now call home. In reflecting on the last month, here are some…