The Yeoman family on Yokohama life: ” I would love to transport some of the amazing technology”

By on April 7, 2014

Time in Japan    6 & 20 YEARS
Where from        USA & Australia

Alice White moved to Tokyo as a child with her parents who were Attaches at the Australian embassy. Her parents loved living in Japan so much they have stayed here, and now work for a private company. Alice has lived here for 20 years, husband, for 6 years. Alice’s husband is from Napa, California. Later, she became Mrs. Yeoman and is raising an 18-month old boy named Billy. Being from different parts of the world, she fondly recalls how they met. “I met my husband in Roppongi! We were both leaving and were humming along to the same song.”  And the rest is history.

On a scale of 1-10, rate Yokohama life.

Cost of living                    7
Education                         5
Childcare/safety           10
Healthcare                       3
Community support      8
Transportation             10
Social life                          8
Housing                             7

Whose choice was it to live in Yokohama? My husband is directly assigned to Yokosuka Naval Base, so we needed to live in the local area. It was a change for me, because I grew up in Tokyo. How does living here compare to your home? I consider Japan to be my second home. We love living in Japan, and although there are different challenges and cultural differences to our home countries, living here is very rewarding. What is the biggest change in your life since being here?  Giving birth and learning to navigate Japan as a Mother, with baby gear in tow, rather than just moving about without difficulty. Did you have to make big adjustments when you first arrived here? Not so much. I have found Japan to be very accommodating to and understanding of parents and babies. What do you and your family enjoy the most about Yokohama? Yokohama is a great city – like Tokyo –  but maybe on a more doable scale. China town is a great getaway and the malls can suffice every need you have. There’s also a lot of open space, parks and playgrounds for children. What’s the most annoying habit picked up in Japan? Waiting for the taxi door to open automatically. However, this is only annoying when you’re out of Japan! And maybe doing a mini bow to everyone.
Any favourite hangout in Yokohama as a family? We love the Mark-IS mall, with the great shops, food, Orbi museum and the Children’s play area at BorneLund.
What  three things about Yokohama life do you appreciate the most? The wonderful transport system and the ease of getting around the city, The diverse cultures  present, and the ability to get (almost) anything you need. If you can change one thing here that will make family life better, what would it be? Making train gates wider to accommodate strollers would go a long way!
If you could bring back a piece of Japan to your home country, what would it be? I would love to transport some of the amazing technology – from toilet seats to automatically filling baths, cell phones that alert you to earthquakes and  truly on-time train schedules.

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