We are booked till mid-May.
For the months of July and August, we may need someone who is willing to do house-sitting for us. Some knowledge of Japanese language is a plus.
We will post here in case something comes up and we need short-term workawayers (one-week) during these months.
We only host solo travelers at this time.
Please read our profile carefully. We won’t be returning messages whose sender has obviously not read it.
日本人の方の滞在も歓迎しています。(We welcome Japanese travelers, too!)
We are grateful to receive lots of inquiries. However we are afraid that many people have very brief profiles which give us too little information about her/him, with just a few photos, without any review. Please give ample information in your profile so we can get to know better your personality, character, your values, your dream etc..
We CANNOT host anyone without a travel insurance. Medical care in Japan is NOT free. We do not accept anyone reckless enough to travel around without proper insurance!
PLEASE avoid cancellation as much as possible!
Please note that it is absolutely NO SMOKING at our place, including the garden and the vicinity.
We are a married couple, MITAKE Naoya and Emi. You can address us as "Mitake-san" and "Emi-san." We moved to the VERY western part of Tokyo in 2016, closer to the mountains and the Tama River, to enjoy life in the natural environment. We are still in Tokyo with convenience stores and grocery stores, but the atmosphere is almost rural, though still accessible and commutable to the city center. Both of us commute to the city center. Emi is a clinical psychologist and works for a middle and high school for girls in the center of Tokyo, and MITAKE teaches comparative politics at Komazawa University. Mitake has lived in Dallas, Texas, USA from 1981-1982 as an high school exchange student, and spent 1 year in Belgium during the 90s. Emi loves to paint, to play piano, and she makes stained-glass works. Some workawayers have joined the lessons she is taking and they loved it. She loves the works of MURAKAMI Haruki. MITAKE loves to play and watch tennis and a huge fan of Roger Federer. He is a long time fan of Queen, too. He is also a life coach as well as a facilitator. Both of us have lived in San Diego, California, USA from 1999-2001 when Mitake was a visiting scholar at UCSD. We both love nature and enjoys gardening.
We know a bit about what it is like to become workawayers as we ourselves have workawayed in Cambodia and Uganda. We have already hosted many travelers from many parts of the world including the ones we hosted in the city center when we lived in a condo there.
We believe Workaway is the one of the best ways to travel. It allows us, both hosts and stayers, to have great chances for cultural exchanges and learning from each other. We are glad to be able to meet travelers from around the world and hear their interesting stories, and give them opportunities to experience life in Japan. We get most joy when we see Workawayers go out there, explore the area and venture into having fun interactions with locals in Tokyo.
And, thus, we would like you to state in your application your intention of coming and staying at our place and would also like very much to know how you would like to spend your free time here. Some people spend their free time almost entirely being online on the smartphone, keep talking to their friends and families at home in their language, watching Youtube in their language or in English all the time. We don’t mean that is bad, but frankly those are the things you can do in your home country without coming all the way to Japan!
Considering the fact that there are so many applicants, we would rather give chances to people who have clear intention of exploring our area, enjoying our neighborhood, and see and get to know our country, and thus make the best out of staying at our place!
Cooking / shopping
Help in the house
Help with Computers / internet
You can experience a totally different Tokyo here. While you can still go to the city center easily (we do commute there), the area is quiet and full of nature. By exploring the area, you might find different cultural aspects of Tokyo. We believe we communicate very well with people with different backgrounds. And being in the education field, we can take any question you might have on Japan, or whatever. We enjoy stimulating and inspiring conversational exchanges to each other.
Normally we put priority on those who can make long time commitment of staying for at least three weeks. Four weeks is better. Occasionally, we host for a week when we need extra help in addition to a workawayer. During the winter time, we host only one workawayer for about one week per month as there is not much help to ask in the garden.
We put priority on those people who are around 25 years old or above with certain level of life skills and social skills, preferably with good job experiences, though we don't exclude younger people. Previous workaway experience is a plus.
We want to meet workawayers who are friendly, talkative and outgoing. Environmentally conscious, dedicated and humble. Willing to learn new things, respectful, and cooperative in maintaining our quiet and clean environment in the house.
House chores, such as cleaning and tidying in the house, are the main thing that we ask. Please describe specifically your experience of cleaning and tidying in the house in your application.
Many people seem to think cleaning and tidying is easy and anyone can do it. Yes, anyone can, but some people are better than others. You need to be GOOD at cleaning and tidying if you are to stay with us. The help with daily house chores include various cleanings, laundries, grocery shopping, cooking (though not always), small maintenance/repairs and so on. We have no pets, no kids, no elderlies living together in the house.
We welcome workawayers who are good cooks. This does not mean we only accept people who are good cooks. Nor does it mean that you have to cook for us all the time: in fact that does not happen too often. Rather, it means that we have found, from our experience, people with good cooking skills tend to have good communication skills and spend their time here in a more fruitful way during their stay. They also tend to spend less of our money for food. So please honestly let us know if you are good at cooking as it is preferable.
We also ask help for the various works in the garden, such as gardening, weeding, getting rid of insects, plowing, relocating plants, small scale landscaping, etc.. Please be ready to do these works. You do need deal with insects, especially in early summer. Here we also welcome people with specific descriptions about their experience.
We ask workawayer to give proper instructions to the next workawayer.
On the days of help, you need to be READY TO START to help by at least 7am. You spend approximately four hours in helping us in the mornings, and 1hr in the evenings. In summer, we could ask you to be ready by 6am. You certainly need to be an early riser!
Japanese, English, (a little) French
We are located in the western part of the City of Ome in the Tokyo Metropolis. It generally takes about 1 hour and a half to get to our place from the city center such as Shinjuku or Shibuya. About 6 minutes from the nearest JR train station.
Please note that our place is very quiet and you will be independent for much of the time of your stay as we commute to work to the city center and we have no kids.
Depending on the situation, your room arrangement may vary. We have traditional Japanese rooms as well as rather westernized style rooms. Sometimes you will get your own room but we cannot guarantee it as guests from other venues have priority. When we have no guests you can have a large Japanese room to yourself, but other times when we have other guests and/or helpers, you may need to share space with others, and/or to sleep in the space where others use as common space during the daytime. Please note that Japanese rooms are not as private as in Western houses as they are separated only by paper sliding doors. Toilets and bathrooms are common.
Other guests may be present at the time of your stay. In fact, it may be possible that you meet some students I teach at my university and former students who have graduated recently.
Please acknowledge that when guests come or when we want to use the space, you may need to vacate the room you sleep temporarily during the daytime.
We provide in general reasonably priced foodstuff for all meals you take at our place including lunches (excluding ready-to-eat food, expensive meat or fish, fancy desserts and alcohol beverage). We cannot cook for you as we don't have time and we are not good cooks, but you can cook for and by yourselves in the kitchen. You can do your own grocery shopping, riding our bicycles. Occasionally we might ask you to cook for us.
Of course, we enjoy cooking together and eating together (as well as cleaning and dish washing together), anytime when our circumstances and schedule allow us. In fact, those are the moments we have enjoyed most until now!
Please note that it is absolutely no smoking at our place, including the garden and the vicinity.
Generally, walls in the Japanese houses are thin and ours is no exception: please keep it down, especially at night. No music, no dancing !!
The railroad track of the JR Ome line is just in front of us. Normally, people do not mind the noise and some vibration when the trains pass by as the service is infrequent here and the trains are short. But if you are extremely sensitive, you may be advised to consult us beforehand. Also, do NOT enter the railroad track.
You can have fun outdoor activities, such as rafting, canoeing, and so on in the nearby upstream of the Tama River, which is beautiful, though some of them are unfortunately a bit pricey. Walking, bicycling, hiking in the mountains are also available. Visiting shrines and temples nearby including the famous but less touristy Mitake Shrine. The Okutama Lake is about 30 minutes away by a train ride. And of course, you can visit the center of Tokyo once in a while if you miss the crowd and vibrant atmosphere there anytime, though it does cost about 1000 yen one way for the JR train ride.
We cannot guarantee, but if our schedule permits, we would love to take you around!!
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Maximum 5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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