corona virus

shinagawa beauty

Being a foreigner in Tokyo, I have come to know the Immigration Bureau quite well; during my two years here I have already gone there five or six times. And now time had come to visit the Immigration Bureau once again to apply for an extension of my spouse visa. With the Corona virus affecting …

shinagawa beauty Read More »

hospital entrance

becoming a father

This has been the happiest week of my life, but in some ways also the most difficult. Let me back up to last Friday, May 29.  When I start writing this, I am sitting in a car park outside a children’s hospital in Tokyo. The time is 2.25 and the rain has finally stopped. We came …

becoming a father Read More »

silence

I could not imagine Tokyo being this quiet. It has been Golden Week, the longish Japanese spring holiday, and with traveling out of the question and shops and parks closed, people seem to have been quietly staying at home; streets almost empty and only a few trucks on the nearby highway. I woke up early …

silence Read More »

a piece of the past

While we were wondering what kind of world our baby will grow up in, a delivery came – a piece of the past had found its way to our doorstep (actually our genkan, but never mind…). A few weeks ago I tried to send a postcard to Sweden – these days that is not possible, and apparently …

a piece of the past Read More »

non-essential person

Is this the new normal now? To be afraid of people, to see a city shut down. When going to the supermarket I felt like I was in the middle of a zombie-movie. And I really do not like those – a half deserted town with stores closed and where people are slowly walking, hiding …

non-essential person Read More »

man-washing

These days, in times of social distancing and pandemi coping strategies, washing hands is a topic constantly talked and written about; in the news, among friends and family, on noticeboards and in bathrooms (I even saw a youtube video of the Governor of Tokyo showing people how to wash their hands, which impressed me greatly). …

man-washing Read More »

お疲れさま

Tokyo is under state of emergency and my wife is on maternity leave from today – a beautiful symmetry in the middle of all worry and despair. She has dutifully been going to the office, taking great care to stay as safe as possible. お疲れさま my love. Now finally our maternity leave begins and we …

お疲れさま Read More »

花見

The beauty of Japan is never more clearly manifested than in the weeks of cherry blossom blooming. Normally I would cherish this time, be outside as much as possible, visit beautiful spots, take a train to the mountains, have picknick with my wife in a park, but this year everything is different. This weekend we …

花見 Read More »

pasteries and empty shelves

What has happened? If I had stepped out of the door after just having woken up from a two months’ sleep, I would not have known there was a pandemic going on. The supermarket was as crowded as before, there was a queue outside the café, there were too many people outside the station. Have …

pasteries and empty shelves Read More »

poetry on a mountain

What do you write about when a pandemic is announced? That is the question that kept me awake this morning. Pandemic is all there is. Normal life cancelled. Schools are closed, sports competitions are being called off. I had been looking forward to the start of the Formula 1 season all winter, and although everything …

poetry on a mountain Read More »

toilet paper

There is no typhoon to blame this time. There is no end in sight. No date, no prognosis, no nothing, except for uncertainty that spreads quicker than the Corona virus. And fear. I sense fear around me as well as inside – there is no typhoon, nothing we can see. Just questions, wondering if the …

toilet paper Read More »

worries

The last few days the winds have been strong and cold. It feels a bit like winter has finally come, although no snow, just clear skies and chilling winds. I worry about my wife’s stomach – her favourite coat is now too small and she cannot button it. I insist she wears a thick scarf, …

worries Read More »