This week has been a difficult one. I haven't been able to sleep at all, and I've been crying at every little thing. I went to close my bank account yesterday. The clerk stamped each of the remaining pages of my bank book with a 'void' stamp and it made me burst into tears. Admittedly, this was a really ridiculous thing to do and I am extraordinarily sentimental, but it makes me sad to be doing every little thing, even the most mundane tasks, for the final time.
I am heart broken at the thought of having to leave. I felt homesick for so much of my time here, and longed to be back in London, but now that it is time for me to go, I realise how much of a life I made for myself here. I don't want to turn this into a rambling, self reflective post, but I had a long think yesterday about what it is that I am going to go back to and the kind of life I aspire to have in London. I want to have a carefree time there; I want to move out, have enough money to be able to make the most of my city and take every opportunity to try new things, make new friends, meet someone lovely and have different experiences. It's easier said than done; London is a hard city to crack; it's socially closed and it is going to be difficult to make new friendships. I'm going to have to really make a big effort to achieve the experience I am craving. I'm trying hard to be optimistic and not frightened of going home. I need to remember all of the amazing things that makes me love my city so much and of all the new opportunities that are potentially waiting for me there if I try to find them.
The root of my sadness is having to leave the people I care about so much behind and utter fear at being back in a city that though I love, I know that I am going to find very overwhelming at first. I can't be sure if my additional sadness is at leaving Japan specifically, or leaving this life of living abroad. I will only know once I am not here anymore. Living here has been the most challenging thing I've done, but it has also been the biggest buzz ever. I've made memories here that I will value forever. I know I want to do something like this again, and soon.
It's my teaparty tonight and I want to have fun. I don't want to say goodbye, but I want my final night in Marugame to be a night of happiness, green tea cake, polaroid pictures, late night bicycle rides, and good times with the funny mix of people who have been a big part of my life this year.
It's hard to sum up a year in pictures - what a horrible task, but these are the ones that made me smile as soon as I flicked through the hundreds of pictures I have.
You have been a tough one, but you've been good to me, Japan.