8am SFO — I’m finishing any last minute packing before I head out the door. I go through my mental checklist: phone, wallet, passport, keys? Check! Some things never leave my suitcase – an umbrella, mosquito repellant, sunscreen, handwarmers… and my MATTER pieces!
11am SFO— I check in at the airport’s crew desk and brief with my crew about today’s flight- weather concerns, passengers needing assistance, flight time, and destination specific meals. Today we’re flying to Tokyo so I need to make sure that we’ve been catered with Sake, Miso and chopsticks! We begin boarding, “Konichiwa!”, and then we’re off. Nine hours, 40 minutes to Tokyo Haneda!
3 pm Tokyo — A chartered van picks the flight crew up from the airport and drops us off at our hotel. Transportation and accommodations are set up by the airline, so I take this time to relax and do some research on the places I want to see while I am here.
5pm Toyko — I shower, change, and meet my crew in the lobby for dinner. We call the flight attendants who are fluent in the language of our destination the “speakers”, and speakers usually know where to find the best food!
Tonight they take us to a cafe where we order from a computer screen with photos of “sets”, two complementary dishes served side by side. Our speaker keeps describing one of the dishes as the “mama and baby”, which turns out to be chicken with eggs. This makes me laugh, so of course, that’s what I order.
6am Tokyo — I’m awake! I’ve been up for a while because…jetlag! I am never not jetlagged these days, and could probably spend the whole day lounging, but then I remember where I am. Tokyo! There’s so much to do and see!
So I’m off, taking and early train to see the Asakusa temple.
P.S. Is this not the cutest metro card you’ve ever seen!
7am Tokyo — The temple is calm and quiet this morning, so I sit in the garden and meditate. I started practicing TM (Transcendental Meditation) about six months ago. My boyfriend, a middle school teacher, turned me onto it. San Francisco school district has been implementing TM programs in our schools, and I love how easy and grounding it is. You can meditate anywhere with TM but Asakusa Temple is one of the nicest places I’ve sat to do it.
8am — See these drawers? After you shake a stick out of the silver cannister, you match the characters on your stick to the corresponding drawer and pull out a fortune. I got number 99, “The Best Fortune” (the English translation was on the back.) Yay! Today is off to a great start!
The temple is starting to fill up now so I mimic the other visitors by cleaning my hands with a ladle of water from a dragon rimmed fountain, waft incense over my head from a giant well, and finally, go into the temple to pay my respects and have my bag “blessed.”
10am — There is so much to explore in every alleyway that I let myself get lost for a little while. Toyko is so big, yet it’s full of small moments. I love how quiet it is, and how no one seems to lock up their bikes. I wish I could feel that confident about leaving my bike out on the street in San Francisco!
12pm — I read about Kappabashi online while researching where to see ceramics in Tokyo. Kappabashi is an entire street dedicated to kitchenware. There are shops for knives, shops for aprons and clogs, and shops just for brushes. I can fall down this rabbit hole for hours, and I do. I love how esoteric Japanese pottery can be- a dish for three condiments, a pitcher for fish infused sake, partitioned plates for sectioning off rice from the rest of your meal… This kind of thing really tickles my fancy.
3pm — Fueling up on caffeine from these Japanese vending machines. I am obsessed with these things, there are so many kinds of tea. This could not be any more perfect for me! I’ll take a Royal Milk Tea please!
4pm — After hours of looking at ceramics, you’d think I’d need a break- but I don’t. I’m off to Musée Tomo, a private collection of Japanese pottery that my ceramics teacher recommended. I meet a coworker here and talk her ear off about Shino, Raku, and Japanese wabi-sabi.
6pm — I’m craving noodles again, so we go to find dinner. Because neither of us can read Kanji, we end up at a really great…Chinese restaurant! Oops! We laugh at our luck, but enjoy our noodles before we go back to the hotel in time to change before our van picks us up.
10pm — We fly all night. I drink copious amounts of green tea to stay awake. Tomorrow this will feel surreal. Tokyo today, San Francisco tomorrow, Zurich the next… A flight attendant’s days are so varied, you never know what’s going to happen next!
We created these pieces to be fit for all occasions, championing the ethos of living better with less. A Day In The Life is a series grounded on the belief that our pieces are made for the everyday, essentials that can carry you through long days and even longer nights. Chloe is wearing The Midi Tunic Dress + Kirana, Size 1.