[Ambassador Video] Teaching English in Japan - Apartment Tour

Kyoto Japan Apartment Tour

ITA Alumni Ambassador, Shana Leigh Heagwood, takes us on a tour of both her old apartment in Hikone, and her new and improved apartment in Kyoto, Japan. Get a sense for what your new life will be like living and teaching English in Japan!



Here's a transcription of the video:

Konichiwa, mira-san! I'm Shana and I'm an ITA alumni who has been living in Japan now for two years. I just started my third year here and I recently just moved  into a brand new apartment. So, speaking of apartments in Japan. I'm sure you've heard a lot of different things. Some of them are probably true, and some of them are probably false.

This is my second apartment living here and I will say that, yeah, apartments in Japan are small. There's not as much space here. But, if you're living by yourself you really only need a small apartment. There's no need for some giant apartment for one person, if you're going to be traveling and experiencing the world and delving into a brand new culture. So, today I actually wanted to share with you both of my apartments. So, let's go ahead and take a look at the first apartment that I lived in in Hikone Shiga, Japan.

Let's go.

Teaching English in Japan with a TEFL certification

So, outside you can see there's some mountains. You got some cherry blossoms blooming. Over here is a government building that always has security so that's nice. If you look down over this way the train tracks are over there. And then when we come inside, so this is where you take off your shoes if you had shoes on. This is supposed to be a shoe closet but I use it as a pantry. And then, we have our washer. We have all of our cleaning, detergent, bug spray and just a storage place more than anything.

You come inside. This is the kitchen. There's not a lot of room for prepping foods. So, you just got to make it work. Stove top, coffee stuff, wine of course. I keep my spices and whatnot in here. This is all cleaning supplies underneath there.

And then over here is the bathroom which everything is kind of wet because I just took a shower. But, you can see this is the toilet, this is actually where you wash your hands. So, I keep my soap and stuff up here along with extra towels. And then in here is the shower and bathtub. So, this is what that looks like. You gotta sink in here. You can shower in this area here. Take your bath over here which is nice because it's a super deep bathtub. And then, I keep my katakana chart in here because why not study while you're in the shower. Be productive, yeah.

ESL teaching in Japan

And then coming this way, back out of the bathroom, we have mini fridge, microwave, dishes, and then in here this is my messy bedroom. I'm sorry I'm in the middle of moving. This stain on the wall is from my black clothes because I'm a baby and refuse to hang anything outside because there are spiders. This is where I actually hang all my stuff to dry. This is a table which pulls out which is really nice and convenient if you want to use that. These shelves belong to me. The chairs come with the apartment as well. The kotatsu is mine.

This is where you're supposed to hang your laundry, get your futon out, etc. I do put my futon out sometimes after I inspect for spiders. But, I do not hang my clothes out there. It does come with air conditioner. I have a space heater. There's a closet. This is the desk area, and then there's some more shelves here. This is a security system that I was told not to touch and not to use. To get up into the bed we have these little stairs and these actually open, so this is my make-up electronics area. So, if we open this I've got make-up in there, I've got electronics in there. Got the bed with the futon. Some more shelves. And then here is a storage area where I keep my futon, my extra futon and everything.

Shana is an ESL Teacher in Japan

So, Yep, that's my tiny little palace apartment which is in the process of being destroyed so there's stuff everywhere. Yeah. So, that was my old apartment. I absolutely loved it. I thought the location was sometimes a little bit inconvenient as far as when the weather was bad trying to get places. But, it was a nice apartment. It had everything that I needed. It came furnished, and I enjoyed living there. However, my new apartment is in Kyoto, Japan. And, I am absolutely in love with this apartment. It did come unfurnished which was fine because I had a lot of furniture anyway, and you could get most things from the recycle shop here really cheap and still in very good condition. But, let's go ahead and take a look at the situation here.

Let's go.

Sorry about the traffic noise but we are situated right across from this incredible temple here. Which is really cool. And there my friends is Kyoto Tower, which was really cool when it's lit up at night. I mean, honestly, how can hate living across from this? You just can't.

First night here by myself, these guys scared the crap out of me because I was walking late at night by myself and I saw them out of the corner of my eye in the dark. Yep, but they're really cool. Security, yeah. This place has its own coin laundry room. There's two washers and a dryer. The washers are 200 yen and the dryer is 100 yen, so not bad.

Teach English in Hikone, Japan with International TEFL Academy

And now, the moment you've all been waiting for. This is going to be my brand-new apartment, well this is my brand-new apartment. I still need a few things. Everything isn't completely put together, but you'll get the idea. So, let's go.

This is what the front door area looks like. Take off your shoes when you come in. I don't have a trash can recycling thing yet, so here's my recycling bag. I keep my keys and my sunglasses and my gloves and things over here. And my note to myself to remind me to take my lunch to work. Here we have my pantry where I keep all of my pots and pans and everything too. And medicines and lunch stuff. And then down here is the shoe closet where I also keep my towels and my toilet paper.

Guys, hold on just a second. Can we see how big my kitchen is? I can fit more than one person more than one person can be in my kitchen at the same time. If you watched my video where my friend and I made chocolate for Valentine's Day and I'll put a short little clip in right here. Alright, so now I have not chopped but broken my chocolates into pieces. I have chocolate chips everywhere. I have a problem.

You couldn't fit more than one person really in my kitchen at the same time in my old apartment. In here, there's so much room for activities. So anyway, this is the kitchen set up. This is a toaster-oven, oven and microwave combo. Usually, you would put a fridge here but I do a lot of cooking at home. I needed a bigger fridge, so I got a bigger fridge.

Living in Japan while Teaching English abroad

And this is the bathroom as you can see. It's pretty small but it's fine. And you have the traditional Japanese deep tub. You got a shower curtain here because I don't want anything getting wet. And, yeah That's the bathroom. And then the bedroom.

So, I keep my fridge here because like I said I need a bigger fridge because I cook a lot. We also have my little drink bar area. Oh, I didn't turn my light on. Then we have bookshelf, TV which I just use Apple TV. My bed which is so nice to have a real bed and not a futon. Don't get me wrong. A futon is fine but there's nothing like having a real bed. Here is where I have a clothing rack for my clothes. Eventually, I will not have any green hangers. Everything will be black.

This is my online teaching slash getting ready for school area. I teach here online. My guitars, my ukulele. And then this is the actual closet which I need some organizational stuff in here. So please do not judge me. But we have perfumes and things. Papers, clothes that don't get hung up which will be organized eventually. All of my make-up and skin care. And then we have luggage. Things that I need to mail to my mom. Electronic stuff. And socks and underwear and hair-cutting stuff down there.

Travel to Japan and see the world with a TEFL certification

If we come this way we have my lovely balcony. Yeah, let's go out here. So balcony's pretty small but it's fine. My plant is not doing too good from the move. But, anyway I live on the quiet side of the road which is really nice. Especially with all the filming and stuff that I do. If you can see, you have mountains over there in the distance. Which is really cool. And actually from one of the other areas you can see a temple over there which is cool too.

And then at night, you can't tell right now, but you can see Kyoto Tower lit up in the distance. I definitely get a lot of use out of my balcony. I love to come out here and drink coffee in the morning, especially on my days off. I love to come out here at night and get some fresh air. Enjoy the view, have a drink, have some wine, whatever. It's amazing. I love my new apartment. And that pretty much wraps up my living slash apartment experience here in Japan which I think has been a really really good one.

Japan ESL Teaching

If you have any questions about apartments, housing, living in Japan, traveling in Japan, teaching in Japan or getting your TEFL certification you can feel free to follow me on my social media, or if you just want to follow me on my adventure, you can message me there as well. You can also follow the international TEFL academy on their social media and check out their website, and feel free to message them with any questions. Thanks for watching guys. Have a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

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