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Work and other plans

Updated: Sep 9, 2022

As promised in my last post, I will introduce you to my current workplace today.

I am not (yet) working in a Sento/Onsen or Ryokan as initially intended.

Since my language school is located in the heart of Tokyo, I can't work outside the city. Therefore, the plan was changed a bit, and through contact, I received a job offer at the tourist information center in Nihonbashi, one of the oldest districts of Tokyo.

Nihonbashi Information Center

Here I have the opportunity to use my courtesy Japanese (Keigo) daily. We offer all kinds of trifles from tradition-steeped stores in Nihonbashi and provide advice and assistance to Japanese and tourists seeking information.

Since individual tourists are still not allowed to travel to Japan at the moment, my communication is limited to giving out directions in Japanese, helping with questions about products that arise and learning from my Japanese colleagues.

Since it looks like Japan is going to restart individual tourism in September, I am diligently learning the Culture Tour that we offer at the tourist information office. The tour lasts about an hour and a half, is entirely in English, and is filled with all kinds of information about the Nihonbashi region, the stores here, the oldest shrine in Tokyo, and the famous Nihonbashi Bridge. More on that at another time, though.

I also have the opportunity to wear kimono during working hours, as this is our work uniform. That makes my heart blossom even more.

Initially, I was sad that I couldn't start learning in a ryokan immediately. But now, I see it as an intensive preparation for my way into the Japanese world of Omotenashi.

Old plans and new ways

In my last blog post, I briefly touched on the fact that my stay in Japan will be extended. Initially, the idea was to attend language school until the end of this year, work in a ryokan on the side, and fly back to Germany in December to finish my master's degree.

But that has changed a bit due to the given circumstances.

I will finish the language school in December and then continue to work in the tourist information office in Nihonbashi until August 2023.

In September, I will do the one-month Hokkaido circumnavigation with Luise, a perfect friend from Germany, and test and improve the travel guide for the coastline of Hokkaido that I created by then.

Afterward, I will go to a ryokan to learn the hotel-specific skills I need to open my hotel in Germany. For this, I will live and work in a ryokan for at least half a year.

All in all, I will not set foot on German ground again until the summer of 2024. I might come home for two weeks if the opportunity arises, but this is not planned. So if you want to see me or cuddle me, you are cordially invited to the land of the rising sun.

Until the next blog entry, stay healthy, and don't let the summer heat get you down!

Your Tanja

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