I cried when I received advice from a beautiful couple (Michelle & Alex) that I should make sure to capture my thoughts before I start this journey. I hadn’t cried about this journey, till then (and a few caipirinhas later).

The eggs

However, I wasn’t sure what to write a week ago — a week ago when I was in New York City trying to figure how to pack the right way for the first four months of this two year plus journey (what I had on my mind was being cautious of extra baggage fees — $200 for each additional bag with ANA airlines, and how to convert 158 something of guidelines into a box size since ANA never picked up their phones — so much for business class service, and how to keep my NYC apartment clean during all this packing). I was almost bipolar (and I feel bad that I at times I didn’t communicate like an adult and the folks closest to me felt that pain). With the help of a couple of friends (thanks so much Marj and Steph) and family (Rachel), and all the “I’ll stay in touch with facetime” to friends, I packed up and was off to begin the journey. I almost missed my flight getting some last minute items at the airport including a purchase of one of my favorite frozen yogurt (Red Mango), but just as I wanted to savor nostalgia, I lost it running to catch the flight. It’s now a week into my journey and I realized I have to write — for my nostalgia, for that advice.

It’s been a week and I’ve gone from Pandora to Spotify, from being literate to illiterate, from a two bedroom apartment to a temp housing studio (with subtle dog smells that are driving me crazy), from dinners with my special someone to waking up next to no one, from never having to think of how to wear a hardhat and now having one at my work desk, from having full blown AC all the time to none. On the other hand, I’ve left the slow NYC MTA metro card life to one of the fastest and user friendly PASMO cards, from the much debated 20% tipping rule to no tipping (because quality service is a must here — not an option), from constant disappointment in quality food to flawless foods (including expiration dates on each of my eggs), from cold weather to nice weather, from losing connection with all my friends on this side of the world to now reconnecting, and most importantly to new hopes, dreams, discoveries, and a journey.

Questions & Answers

  1. Where did you get your box from? Home depot. Large size. UPS is way too expensive. (thanks for the tip “D”)

2. What surprised you the most in your first week in Tokyo? The feeling of Paris here.

3. Pasmo or train tickets? Pasmo. You’ll be making circles at the train station if you don’t get the Pasmo. You get reimbursed for the card when you return it.

4. What do you wish you would have brought with you from home that you didn’t think would be an issue? Extra sneakers or some really nice Geox, or comfy pumps— you get better deals in NY. You walk a lot here.

5. What do you miss most so far? Salads. I barely ate them at home but I miss them now. The food is amazing here but I miss a good sized salad to go with this yummy food.

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