The nice thing thing about arriving in Yokosuka this time around is that I know the place pretty dang well after spennding four months there. I already know where I prefer to frequent & where to go for our needs. The downside to this is that there isn’t much left for me to explore in town! Last time, our joint goal was to put away some money but my own goal was to take full advantage of four months in Japan and see as much as I could in that time. I didn’t see everything I hoped to but I spent quite a bit of time in Tokyo!
This time, it was all about the money. It was a significantly shorter trip for me, lasting only three weeks, while Rob still has to power through until mid-April 2020.
Right now, I’m sitting in the Tully’s cafe at Tokyo Narita, with quite a bit of time to kill before my flight. Once again, I’m flying Japan Airlines. My flight out here was a pleasant one so I’m optimistic about tonight’s flight also. I went back & forth on checking my bag, and decided against it, much to my regret. Last time was a learning experience after we way over packed, and now we pack on the lighter side, so it isn’t a big bag but it’s inconvenient to have to lug around the airport. My logic was that it would save me the extra step of stopping at the baggage claim after I arrive back home. I showed up far too early with big plans on how I was going to entertain myself at the airport but I’m always too nervous about running into a problem so instead of doing all the fun stuff I wanted to do, I went straight through security and then found my gate. I probably need to worry less. So, rather than shopping and getting one last Japanese meal before boarding the plane, I sit here, drinking my mocha, eating my mousse cake and waiting for the time to pass.
I don’t mind plane rides but my flights to and from Japan this time were on my own and I don’t like that. I get a little nervous when Rob or I have to fly without the other one. I know nothing is going to happen but it still makes me feel uneasy.
Leaving Rob this morning was no easier than it was back in November when I dropped him off at Sea Tac. When I originally planned this trip, some things were different with my job so I had a specific plan regarding my work schedule. Now, I’ll be working in a different location which changes that specific plan and NOW, I fly back to Seattle, work one day and then have two more days off. Had I known, I would have taken that one work day off and had three more in Japan with Rob. I guess the bright side is that I won’t be able to spend a bunch of money on Tokyo like I’ve been doing all week and within the next 10-12 hours, I’ll be back in my own home with our cats. I hope they’re happy at my return rather than angry over the length of time I was gone! Additionally, I’ll have some time to rest this weekend.
Rob & I have had different thoughts on whether I should visit Japan one or two more times between now and April. He initially said one more should do, because he wanted to save the air fare that a second trip would cost us. I wanted to make two happen but that will also depend on work. If I can work it out with my boss, I think Rob might feel a little more inclined to have me out twice now, because he enjoys life in Japan much more when I’m here with him. He was a little bummed this morning when he left for work, knowing I wouldn’t be in the hotel room when he returns.
I can’t believe our three weeks together is up and I’m waiting for my plane back to Sea-Tac.
I’m not sure exactly when I’ll be able to return. Hopefully sooner rather than later. Next time, I’m going to change my focus from Tokyo to some of the other ancient, small areas around Yokosuka. I want to visit Enoshima Island, there’s one or two more things I’d like to see in Kamakura, and I’d like to look up what else might be worth seeing so we can check those things off our bucket list. Down the road, we’d like to take one long vacation to Japan. When I say vacation, I mean vacation for both of us, not just me. We want to spend part of it in Tokyo, checking off a few more things for me and giving Rob the opportunity to see anything he hasn’t had a chance to visit yet but would like to. Then we want to travel down to Osaka and Kyoto, which are a few hours away from Tokyo by train or a little over an hour by plane. Osaka is known as “Japan’s Kitchen,” and they are renowned for their street food, although I’ve heard there isn’t as much of it as there used to be. I’ve read Kyoto is what you’d expect to see when you think of ancient Japan, and is the main hub for the old geisha culture. I’ve read there’s tons to see there. We talked about maybe just going down there for a weekend if Rob can get the time off but that never happens. Plus, I want to see everything without being rushed or having to choose and miss out on anything.
We wouldn’t mind coming back to Japan for work but we aren’t going to do another one of these long trips. Now that we have pets, it isn’t practical to leave them for months on end, plus it’s hard on them and hard on us! I’m allowed to take time off of up to six months at a time per 12 months, which is pretty great, but only so much of that can be done before it has a negative impact on my professional development. Rob’s job sometimes has month long trips, which would be ideal. We would probably just have him work for the month, and I would meet up with him at the end, and we would take a week and then be able to do the fun stuff! We have no intention of ever being apart like this again.
I can’t wait to plan my next trip out here. As of right now, I’m not sure when I’ll see my husband again and I am really not into it, and neither is he.
Even though this is my last couple of hours in Japan before returning home and I’m typing this up, there is still plenty I have to write about. I have to update my previous blog posts as I move them over from the other blogging platform I was using, and I actually have a couple that I never posted from our last trip but will be doing soon. I also have several from this trip of days in Tokyo so there’s plenty more coming soon.