Sweet Sayonaras

One of the things that transpired while I was on holiday was the final step in our plan to leave Japan.

It was a difficult decision and I struggle to explain why it suddenly feels like the right time. But, our jaunt in Tokyo was always meant to be temporary. I can’t express enough how grateful I am for the opportunity to live in and explore Japan, to have met so wonderful people, and to have spent my time doing things that I love: I started my own business and this blog, I learned how to sew my own clothing and how to speak Japanese, I now eat fish guts, play roller derby, and sing karaoke in public. I remember when I was on the plane flying to Tokyo — for the first time, to remain indefinitely — and I was served green tea. It tasted like dirt, and I panicked as I realized I couldn’t say more than arigatou. But I wouldn’t have had it any other way. Living outside of my element these few years has helped me to become more myself.

Shimokita side streets

And though I love my life here, the future awaits.

So I head westward! Toward the great city of New York to seek my fame and fortune resume my career in museum work. I’ll continue to embroider and sew and craft, so though the nature of this blog may change slightly, I’ll continue to share things that interest me, like sashiko, Japanese craft books, and the occasional bowl of ramen. Looking ahead, I’m excited to tap into all of the amazing resources New York offers, like the garment district and tacos.

There we have it. In 3 short weeks I’ll be on to my next thing. I hope you’ll come along!

To Tokyo, お世話になりました。本当にありがとうございました。

* * *

ps, I’m having a moving sale in my shop – use the coupon code SALE35 for 35% off your purchase ($10 min). Thanks!


24 thoughts on “Sweet Sayonaras

  1. It’s so sad that you are leaving! If not for your blog, I would have never found a blog post about La Drogerie in Omotesand and I would have never met you! Have fun during your last three weeks in Tokyo and sing some karaoke for me too! XXX

  2. I see a trip to NY in our future. 🙂 We’re happy to have you back state side, but also very happy you had such a wonderful adventure, living in such an amazing country.

  3. So happy and excited for you – although I am sure you must have such a mix of feelings.
    I have loved seeing Japan through your eyes – thank you for sharing it all with us!

  4. Angela!

    Congratulations on your move and new adventure! I can’t wait to hear about all of your wanderings in New York! It’s an empty feeling to know you’ll be leaving Tokyo, and we’ll have one less crafty kindred spirit in the city, but I feel so fortunate I did get the chance to meet you through the blog and our few crafty meetups. All the best and stay in touch!

  5. I am selfishly sad because I love your take on Tokyo and sashiko, and I have more opportunity to explore Tokyo than NY. However, I am looking forward to exploring NY through your blog eyes. Yay for moving! Good luck with the transition!

  6. Such an amazing adventure you’ve had! Best of luck for your move and I can’t wait to hear about your epic NYC adventures… Gotham Girls perhaps? 😉

  7. Hi Angela, I’ve just discovered your blog through Kollabora. I lived in Nagoya in 2007 with my Toyota employee husband so your post has rung true to me – I crossed a lot of personal challenges that year (going nude in onsen, singing karaoke, trying to get a haircut without speaking more than 2 words of Japanese….). You realise that life can be just a bit too easy at home:) Good luck with your new adventures and looking forward to keeping up with your blog!

    • Hi Renee! It sounds like perhaps we have had some similar, somewhat embarrassing moments. 😉 Thanks for dropping by! I look forward to reading your blog, and to sharing more about my future mis-adventures!

  8. So sorry to hear that you’re leaving, Angie! It’s too bad we didn’t get a chance to meet up more often while you were here… Good luck in in New York and with your museum career! 🙂

  9. Dear Angela,
    I moved to Tokyo just over a month ago and came across one of your posts from 2012… Funny enough it was the one about Itosho 😋 but being a crazy little crafter myself I got so caught up with your writing I just read the hole blog chronologically… Till it brought me to this post 😢 I loved your writing style and even though we never met I’m sad to see you leaving Tokyo, I hope you’ll continue posting from the US! So, after a cozy morning if reading (thank you!) no more excuses – better get back to finding a language school and my way around this urban jungle 😎

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