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03 June 2012 @ 08:13 pm
My new Japanese apartment  

I live in Japan and have been here for almost 5 years now.
I lived in a very small (1-room) "shoebox" for 4 years. I also posted here a long time ago, but cannot find the post anymore, so instead I'm just gonna link to the post in my LJ, hope that's okay: my old, super tiny apartment (2008-2012)

After moving into this new apartment in March 2012 a whole bunch of problems were awaiting me.
The dude who used to live in there before me just left everything completely dirty!
I've never seen such a dirty apartment in my whole life! He lived there for 4 years and I'm quite sure he NEVER EVER cleaned the apartment AT ALL!!

I had quite a miserable time, spent my first few weeks cleaning night and day. As my new apartment is quite big for Japanese standards it really took forever.
The first few nights I couldn't sleep because it was so disgusting, I swear!
Everywhere hair, the shower room was black from dirt(!), a lot of critters' poo ....

Anyways, all the cleaning wasn't in vain! Here's my new, big(ger) apartment!

Let's start with the kitchen. I rearranged the layout of the furniture, threw out all sorts of garbage and cleaned the uber-dirty microwave and gas cooking device.
Even the walls and the ceiling were dirty. Often I asked myself how it was possible to get spots in so many areas dirty in the first place. I don't want to know, though.
Can you see the table on the right? To be honest I never use it for eating, I prefer using my PC desk while watching something on my laptop instead - esp. now that I don't have a TV anymore!

I also bought one of those water boiler thingies because I never had a gas stove before and was afraid of using it at first, but now I'm ok.
Yet having such a device is really convenient, esp. during the colder months!
I also have a few plants. Only one on that table is real and I'm sure I'll manage to kill it just as fast as I always do with my plants! ;___;

The area around the sink! I suddenly have SO MUCH space, it's amazing!! I have two cooking plates and a big sink.
You can also peek out of the window to have a nice view of the rice fields surrounding my apartment!

The sink area is by far not as narrow as in my old apartment anymore where EVERYTHING including the "kitchen" was in ONE room.

A few days ago I also bought this cute little cactus in a 100-yen store. Usually cacti are easy to handle, but I managed to kill my previous one, too, so I'm worried! ^-^;

My cups and glasses! I managed to take almost all of my cups with me when moving. Only one broke! I had to buy glasses, though.

This is also in my kitchen - just for decoration. Isn't it great when you finally have SPACE??!!

This is a smaller room right next to the kitchen.
I got rid of the dirtiest carpet on earth which was literally living (eww!) in that room and threw out all of the other garbage the the stupid jerk living in there before me left behind.
I use it as spare room to put my fitness stuff in there (haven't done anything in about a year!!) and to dry my laundry if it's raining.
In the background you can also see a lot of boxes. I used them for moving and decided to keep some of them for now.

There's also a small built-in closet where I keep part of my clothes.

This is the entrance area. On the right, behind my dark brown coat there's a huge storage closet for shoes! I only have very few, so I don't need it, but it's definitely convenient!
Behind the door with the Mt. Fuji poster is the toilet and on the left is the bathroom.

First let's have a look into the bathroom. I never had one in my old apartment. My kitchen sink was also my bathroom ... ^-^;

And there's also a little shower room with a small bathtub. It's pretty much the same as in my old apartment.
However, it was almost BLACK!!!! The whole room!!!!! It took me a bloody whole day to clean it all!! At least I got it white again!
I can't understand how it's possible to get a SHOWER room so dirty! Not all of the black stuff was mold!

And here's my tiny little toilet!
Isn't it cute?
I FINALLY have one of those toilets with some function buttons!! I the heating function, always did! In winter this is heaven!!

And here's my main room! This is the only room with an air-conditioner which is why I decided to take it as the room where I'd sleep and also put my PC desk in there.
Yes, it is a little crowded, but as I was used to a narrow place, it's not a problem at all. I like it a lot and at least that way I can stay warm in winter and cool in summer without any problems!

That's the view you get when standing in the kitchen. There's a small bookshelf, not enough to place all of my stuff there, but I decided not not unpack everything anyways, so it's ok.

Here's the other "main area", my desk!! ^____^
I'm obsessed with cherry blossoms. In order to have them all year round, I bought a few plastic ones to decorate the room and I love it!!

Zoomed in.

Next to my bedroom is an actual big tatami room with a lot of storing space!
This is supposed to be the bedroom and the jerk had his huge bed in there obviously, but as this room has no air-conditioner, it's no option for me!
It's possible to get an air-conditioner in this room, but that's too expensive considering the time I still plan to stay!

If you look at the left where the sliding doors are then you can see where my bedroom is.
You can actually take off both sliding doors which is convenient when you have big furniture out of that room (e.g. a bed).

This is the view I have from my bedroom / working room and the tatami room.

That's where the Shinkansen (Japanese bullet train) passes by every few minutes. It's not annoying at all!
However, whenever I see it I feel like hopping in and travel somewhere! ^-^;

Let's go back inside and have a closer look at the shelf in my bedroom.
I'm really obsessed with cherry blossoms, huh?
I couldn't resist when I saw this in Kobe!

I bought it along with the two in the foreground here!
I just couldn't make up my mind and so I ended up buying all! ^-^;; .....

Although I only unpacked a very small amount of my souvenirs (the rest will stay wrapped and packed until the day I move home, I guess) Mt. Fuji needed to get its own place of worship!
I know it hates me. It has shown that many times, but it doesn't change the fact that I like the volcano a lot! ;P

I also bought some stunning cherry blossom postcards that I want to use to decorate my apartment a little bit more.
Aren't they awesome? I wish I could take photos like that!!

My apartment is surrounded by rice fields.

While this might look peaceful, it's really not ....

... at night millions of frogs make so much noise that even with closed doors/windows and earplugs your ears will HURT!
I lived near a pond befoe and the few frogs there were loud, too, but you just cannot compare it to what's going on here.

Since moving I had a lot of sleepless nights.
Not only because of the frogs, but because of this:

That's bat poo. If you're not too disgusted after seeing this photo, feel free to read the whole story here: part 1 and part 2

Thanks for reading.
I hope you enjoyed the short tour through my apartment!
helenatroy: dancinghelenatroy on June 3rd, 2012 03:48 pm (UTC)
I can really relate to living in a place that the previous tenant left filthy. And how long it takes to really clean it. But it's so great to have space!

I used to live in Japan. Long time ago. I left in Heisei ni-nen. I miss it. I really miss it. I was in Tokyo. Looks like you're out in the country. I like the lady checking on the rice field. Nice to know some things are still the same :)

Happy New Apartment Living!!
超ちゃ人: cute food: cup lovechochajin on June 4th, 2012 03:10 am (UTC)
It was really a bad experience.
I mean, new city, new job ... a lot of stress moving anyways and then a super dirty apartment awaits you. Not really what one is hoping for, right? :/

Oh, so you lived there over 20 years ago?? Cool!! ^___^
I'm living in "inaka"-land, yes. While it's peaceful and nice during the daytime, it's quite horrible at night right now.
The frogs outside are at it the whole night and they are SO loud that you cannot have a conversation (even when screaming at each other), watch TV or listen to music. It's beyond imagination! Never knew frogs can be THAT loud! :/

Thanks! I hope things will become better soon! ^-^
Rachelnippyfrog on June 4th, 2012 03:44 am (UTC)
Do you mind me asking you what your career is there, and how you ended up there to begin with? :)
I'm also just generally curious how you get handed an apartment that filthy that you are expected to clean, not the landlord.
超ちゃ人chochajin on June 4th, 2012 03:53 am (UTC)
I don't mind at all! (^-^)b
It's quite a long story, though. I didn't intend to stay in Japan for that long. Originally I just wanted to stay for 1 year after I finished university, but then ... things turned out the way they are now.
I'm working as a teacher. You can read the whole story here: How I made it to Japan

That's another long story. You're right, that shouldn't have happened.
I started a new job. The apartment comes with the job. It's under my boss' name! They were in charge of it.
However, the teacher who lived in there before me wanted to stay until the very last day. They agreed, but told him to take care of everyting and clean the apartment.
He didn't. He left the day I moved in ... leaving behind all his garbage (huge furniture I didn't want) and a lot of dirt! :( .....
Rachelnippyfrog on June 4th, 2012 03:59 am (UTC)
Ugh, that's awful. I'm really sorry that happened to you.

I don't think I'm brave enough to go on an adventure like you have!
I will definitely read your entry there! Thanks for the link! :) It's late for me now so I'm going to catch up on it later. :)
Rachelnippyfrog on June 5th, 2012 03:19 am (UTC)
What is a tatami room? I googled it, but I was still a bit unclear.
I read your blog there! Very interesting. You're a brave girl!
When you were teaching English did you know much Japanese?
超ちゃ人: アニメ: キャンディ・キャンディ → ribbonschochajin on June 5th, 2012 04:33 am (UTC)
You can see a tatami mat room in this entry actually. Just look through the photos I posted one more time and I think you'll get it! ^-^

Brave? I don't think so.

I didn't know that much Japanese. Maybe basic to intermediate level.
You don't need to know ANY Japanese to teach English here.
It's sad though. There are so many (mainly guys) who have been in Japan for 10+ years and still can't speak a single word of Japanese. Most of the time they're married to a Japanese woman and so she does all for them. Pathetic!
If you consider living in another country, I think it's normal and common sense to study that country's language, no?! ...
Maybe that's just me.
I'm still not fluent in Japanese, but I can manage daily life well and I have rarely any problems doing everything by myself (even hospital visits etc.)
It was a lot of work. I spent my first 2 years here shut in my apartment, mainly, to study Japanese like WOAH! ^-^;;
(Deleted comment)
超ちゃ人: cute panda: excitedchochajin on June 4th, 2012 03:10 am (UTC)
Thanks! :D
No, I don't mind at all! :3
a little less than the girl next doorin_transit on June 3rd, 2012 07:19 pm (UTC)
very nice. your apartment is really rather big by japanese standards, esp if you're living alone! lucky you!
超ちゃ人: cute food: desert much XDchochajin on June 4th, 2012 03:11 am (UTC)
Well, that's what you get when you're way out in the countryside.
I don't need all that space and after living in a small shoebox for many years, I don't know what to do with all that space anyways. *g*

It would be impossible to afford such a big apartment in Tokyo and the likes!
One of my Japanese friends just moved into the center of Tokyo and she pays over 1000$US for a tiny 1-room apartment! Crazy!
Rachelnippyfrog on June 4th, 2012 03:42 am (UTC)
ack- yup, that's big cities for you. :/
So frustratingly expensive. I lived in Boston for 5 years, and now that I'm outside of Boston again-- I have such difficultly with the idea of paying that much for a place to live. :/
超ちゃ人: girlZ: fashion~❤chochajin on June 4th, 2012 03:47 am (UTC)
I wouldn't want to pay that much for my apartment!
The majority of your salary would be gone just for that!
On the other hand, my friend chose a really great area. She's surrounded by Japanese celebrities and I'm definitely gonna visit her soon and stalk some of them. Hehe *g*
Big Comrade Bird: Dinosaur :Dperaspera on June 3rd, 2012 10:50 pm (UTC)
Your apartment is adorable! The toilet-kitty made me squeal out loud.
超ちゃ人: cat (猫): drawingφ(・ω・ )chochajin on June 4th, 2012 03:12 am (UTC)
Haha, thank you! :D
(Deleted comment)
Schakal_schakal_ on June 4th, 2012 03:43 am (UTC)
Your apartment looks so cozy! You have so many nice knick-knacks there, where did you place them in your smaller apartment? o_O

I'd love to add you too :)
超ちゃ人: colorful: 目chochajin on June 4th, 2012 03:49 am (UTC)
Uhm ... good question, but I managed somehow! ^-^;
Though I have to admit that I often stumbled and fell over my stuff. There often was literally no way to WALK anymore!
Impossible ot have guests!

Sure, go ahead! :3
stardreemer: princessesstardreemer on July 15th, 2012 11:38 am (UTC)
I know this post is kind of old, but i just wanted to say I really like your apartment! I lived in Japan for a few years and I also had a tiny shoe-box apartment; when I moved back to the States I didn't know what to do with all the space I now had.

Also, I have that same Cherry Blossom Starbucks travel mug. The Starbucks there always had the cutest mugs, it was hard to resist! (though I admit I have a slight obsession with mugs for some reason).

Anyway, very cute apartment. I like what you did with it!
超ちゃ人: JG: Ueto Aya (上戸彩) - eye coverchochajin on July 15th, 2012 11:41 am (UTC)
Not sooooo old! *g*
Thanks you! ^-^

Ikr!! Whenever I got back to Germany ot my family's house with several floors, I feel it's kind of annoying if I forgot something in one room, I have to climb up all these stairs just to get it ... while in my previous apartment I didn't even have to stand up most times.

They have new mugs every spring, but that one was still the cutest I've ever seen and the only one I have ever purchased! :D

Thanks ^-^
Kate: [Angelique] Luvakiyohimee on August 5th, 2012 09:30 am (UTC)
When I moved in to my apartment 3 years ago a child had found a gun and shot himself before we moved in. The first day I moved my stuff in everything was a mess. The bathroom looked like a crime scene with mysterious blackish red whatever in the toilet bowl. Yuck. I had to clean everything four times from top to bottom before my roomie came with the help of our mutual friend. I can sense your frustration. >_<

Your apartment is so cute. I love the cherry blossoms in your computer/bedroom. I also love your mug collection. ^_~

超ちゃ人: JG: Ueto Aya (上戸彩) - eye coverchochajin on August 19th, 2012 10:15 am (UTC)
Oh gawd, that sounds horrible! :(
I hope your apartment got comfortable after all that cleaning?

Thanks!! ^-^
Kate: [APH] Spainkiyohimee on August 20th, 2012 10:12 am (UTC)
It took awhile but it's home minus the neighbor issues we're facing. Right now, we're trying to redecorate it but we have so much stuff to sort. But, it's home. :)
超ちゃ人: JG: Ueto Aya (上戸彩) - eye coverchochajin on August 21st, 2012 02:07 am (UTC)
Glad to hear that :)
seize.the.day: halloween cupcakesseizetheday on October 31st, 2012 12:29 am (UTC)
That is a decent size place for Japan. Sucks about the frogs and bats!