Trains, Planes and Goodbyes (for now)

Asia, blog, Tokyo, Japan, Travel, zhangjiajie national forest park

Several days ago I left Tokyo, bound for Hong Kong. I decided to leave Tokyo early to pursue a dream of completing research in Zhangjiajie, China. I have been selected as an intern and I can’t express my excitement!

On the day before I left, my friends surprised by telling me they had made evening plans for us to celebrate my job and to say goodbye. I hopped onto the train and followed my friends, having no idea where we were headed.


Outside our dorm, Oak House.

Once we got off the train I found myself staring at the Tokyo Tower. I was overwhelmed with how kind and thoughtful it was for them to take me here.


Tokyo Tower (東京タワー).

I’ve only see Tokyo Tower during the day, but when we arrived it was already dusk and the sun was setting quickly. By the time we went up the tower, it was nightfall and the city had illuminated up in a different way. The glow from the buildings were stunning. We had dinner in Roppongi at an outdoor izakaya. It was delicious and reasonably priced.


View from Tokyo Tower (東京タワー) Main Observatory. 

I packed up several last minute before leaving the following morning. My flight to Hong Kong was leaving out of Haneda Airport. While almost all international flights use Narita Airport, Haneda Airport services mainly domestic flights and several international flights. However, with a relatively new international terminal, I think Haneda Airport will be expanding the number of international flights it services soon.

My Japanese family told me that they would be sending me off at the airport and have dinner with me before I leave Japan. It was so special to see most of my family before flying to Hong Kong. A group of 10 family members came to see me! Again I found myself overwhelmed with the love extended to me. Since most of my family is living about 2 hours away from Tokyo, it was even more special that they took the time to send me off.


My Grandfather.


My uncle and cousin.



“I want to fly, I want to fly!”




There are several things I feel particularly grateful for right now:

1) the friends I made in Tokyo
2) being able to learn Japanese on a beautiful campus
3) having supportive family around the world

Now to continue to the next exciting journey!

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3 thoughts on “Trains, Planes and Goodbyes (for now)”

  1. Very sentimental. Especially with the concluding images. The sunset on the faces. The airport. The departure. I can feel the air of leaving a place. Great journey..

  2. Thank you Elmer. Yes, how much more powerful are photos when they convey emotions and a story.

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