A few years ago when I talked to my dad about potentially living in another country than Sweden, mentioning a few examples, he replied that he would miss the shifting seasons if he lived in a country that didn’t have four distinct ones like Sweden (and many other places).
Back then I didn’t know if I agreed or not.
Then a couple of years later, I became a digital nomad for a while. My work was—and is—completely mobile. All I need is a laptop and some internet.
Reading up on other digital nomads, I came to realize that they always seemed to chase the summer, and so did most travel companies that created work-vacation trips specifically for that crowd.
I was bored in no time.
Warm and hot (ugh!), warm and hot, warm and hot. That was the weather. Always, because when autumn came, flee to the equator, when winter comes to the northern hemisphere, flee to the south one.
It wasn’t that the weather alone bored me. But my skin missed feeling a chill. I missed seeing spring green and new plants; and autumn-colored trees and kicking through dry leaves.
I missed wearing sweaters and not being hot every time I walked outside.
Turns out my dad was very much right.
It made me realize I wanted to experience all seasons, regularly in my life. And since I’d loved Japan as a tourist a couple of times, I really wanted to experience a whole year there. Their beautiful Japanese maples in full autumn colors. Winter when temperatures in many cities (I wanted to be in) would be slightly chilly but not cold (in my opinion). And spring.
Wonderful, beautiful spring with its cherry blossoms.
The only thing I didn’t look forward to (and I was correct!) was Japanese summer. Hot, hot, hot, and humid, humid, humid.
Anyway, I got a student visa to study Japanese for a year, and off I went in April 2019. And these are a couple of pictures from my first couple of days in Tokyo, before I got to Kyoto where I would live for most of this year in Japan.