When I was a teenager of 14 years I started to get addicted by Japanese pop culture, that was just starting to become popular in Germany at that time. During the rest of my teenage years I created my own Manga characters and even started to develop my own stories. My school paper, where I was a part of the editorial staff, even printed my Manga piece for piece in every issue for over a year (which sounds more than it actually was).
Drawing and writing stories are my favorite hobbies up to this day. And Japan has stayed close to my heart all these years as I studied Japanese Language and Culture at university and lived a year in the midst of Tokyo, for ever losing my heart to this lively, colorful, hospitable city. (And there I got my addiction to cameras and taking pictures wherever I go.)
Exactly one year ago I went to Japan for the fourth time and stayed one month in Ikebukuro Honmachi, near one of the liveliest stations of the world. It was my first time in a so called Gaijin House, where supposedly foreign students or teachers live to cheaper conditions than are normally seen in the center of Japans capital. When I got there around 2 pm Tokyo time after a long flight with the ever great Scandinavian Airlines (SAS - via Copenhagen; I totally recommend them - the service is outstanding, the food is healthy and yummy and everywhere there is this Scandinavian feel of ease) no one was in the house, though.
In the evening everybody returned from work - almost all inhabitants were actually young Japanese, who couldn't afford the high prices either. The first view of my tiny room was quite shocking, even if I knew that Japanese rooms don't tend to be large at all. At least my luggage fit in one corner, I had a bed and a tiny IKEA table, as well as a book shelf and wardrobe (a tiny one...).
Unfortunately last year in March it was really unusually cold for the time of the year and I was freezing in my room the first nights.
In the mornings I got up, ate a breakfast I had purchased the other night in the local conbini (24 h convenience stores that sell almost anything, but aren't that large) and went off to do research at the Waseda University library a 15 minute train ride and a 15 minute walk away (which isn't bad in Tokyo. At all.) In the evening I met with various Japanese friends in Shinjuku or Shibuya and had tons of fun. At around midnight I came back to fall in my bed. At the weekends I retraced some steps I had loved to walk when I lived in Japan. A friend of mine even took me for a car ride to Nikko, which is really one of the places where you feel awed by japanese temple architecture.

I can hardly believe what is happening right now. Every time I was in Japan I experienced minor earthquakes and every time I was a little bit uneasy about the possibility of the Great Quake, which always loomed in the shadows. Now that it struck and triggered a major tsunami as well as an imminent nuclear catastrophe my prayers are with Japan and the Japanese, who deal with this crisis in an most admirable way. I hope that I will be able to go back there some day and I don't just yet want to give up on my dream of living and working in Nihon.


Where we are going...

Well, time is running faster and faster. And while my situation hasn't improved that much (I'm still officially a student and haven't heard anything that sounded like "Get the hell outta here and never come back!" yet.) I'm writing job applications and dream of the things I'd love to do. Maybe. In the future that lies ahead. Sometimes shining like a bright star, sometimes looming about like a black hole.

Well, at least I had time to figure out why I actually want to write this blog. A blog that has no purpose other than self-pity obviously doesn't attract readers. At all. Who would have guessed?

Since last autumn I've been following a lot of crafty and creative bloggers around the globe. Some live in the USA, some in Norway, Finland, Denmark, Japan, Switzerland or even my own home country Germany. Seeing all those marvelous things that they create, I wished to chime in and be more creative again. I renewed my journal, got out my watercolors, learned to crochet and knit again and well, have been quite creative. But everything takes time, doesn't it?

I thought about what attracted me to those blogs in the first place. Well, obviously there are a lot of colorful pictures to behold. I totally can't resist a photo feast of great interiors, nice cloths, new projects, cute pets and make up products. Hey, I'm a end-twenty girl, I'm allowed to like that, totally. As German lawyers are currently filling their pockets with money earned from lawsuits against Internet users who used pictures from other web sites and didn't know about legal restrictions I have to keep to my own pictures, though. Luckily, one of my biggest hobbies is taking pictures. Everywhere, in every pose, with every object possible. Well, almost. I leave the gross stuff out.
Not so luckily my loyal digital camera isn't the newest one anymore, and my plans on saving money for a Sony nexus have been cruelly thwarted by my misfortune of losing my stipend and place in this world of academic excellence.

If I can secure a job in the next two months I swear I'll buy one from the first money I'll get. Well, maybe. Because obviously, I will have to spend a lot of this money on a lot of things one has to buy when entering the real world aka working world. But this is a 'hanashi' (=talk) that is left for the future because frankly I don't have a job. Yet.

Let's sum up the purpose I want to see in this blog of mine:
I want to gather my impressions on the world around me, my take on things and offer you inspiration on your projects if possible. Sometimes I might show you nature, on other days big cities like Tokyo or Frankfurt. On other days I might add some drawings from my journal. For good measure I try to improve on my writing and tell you stories I've witnessed.

Join me on my journey!