What I REALLY miss about my home country

Until now, this had seemed like a boring topic to write about because I don’t like stating the obvious. Of course I miss my family. Of course I miss being able to communicate without language barriers. Of course I miss my favourite pizza. Lately I have been realizing though that there is something else I miss dearly.

Are you ready?

I miss seeing the stars in the night sky.

Yokohama is a big city and therefore light pollution makes it impossible to see stars. I didn’t pay much attention to it in the beginning because I was busy with work and life. But I do notice it now, all the time. And it’s weird. It’s weird not being able to see the stars at night. They had been there my whole life and I had spent countless hours, summer or winter, with friends or alone, staring up at them.


Because they made me feel like even though my life was small and meaningless compared to the magnitude of the universe, there had to be some sort of a plan for me. Someone or something had to be watching over me. That everything was going to be fine, because it had to. Stars have always been – and still are – a symbol of comfort and hope to me.

There is this song called ’Stars’ sung by Javert in Les Misérables which goes like this:

“Stars, in your multitudes
Scarce to be counted
Filling the darkness
With order and light
You are the sentinels
Silent and sure
Keeping watch in the night
Keeping watch in the night.“

Whoever wrote this knows exactly how I feel. Not being able to see stars anymore feels wrong. Not in a “I’m going to despair over this“ , but in a “this just doesn’t feel right“ kind of way.

That’s why this summer, while visiting my family, I had to soak up all the stars I could possibly see. In one of those nights when the shooting stars were predicted to do their magic, my siblings and I set out to spend a night under the starry sky.

Equipped with flash lights and sleeping bags, bottles of hot tea and lots of chocolate, we made camp on a field outside of town, where the sky would be perfectly clear. We made a bonfire, lay around it, and stared up at the stars.

For hours.

At some point, I fell asleep. I woke up again at 3 am, the fire still going, and the sky being filled with more stars than I’d ever seen in my entire life. It was truly beautiful. I will never forget that night.

That night reminds me that even though at this point in my life both stars and my family aren’t in my immediate reach, they are still there, and I can always visit and see them again.




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