Ami and I met in July 2010 at Harajuku Station in Tokyo. At the time, I had set up frisbee get-together at Yoyogi-koen. It was usually a few friends of mine, some work colleagues, and friends of theirs. At this meet-up my colleague, Taka brought two of his friends, Ami and Chieko. I met him outside the station, then we talked while waiting for them.
When Ami and Chieko came, I was smoking a cigarette and drinking a beer. I can’t fathom that I left a good first impression. We all walked to the park together and I distinctly remember walking by the Yoyogi park greasers. We found an open spot to play frisbee and met up with a few other friends. Before we started playing is the first time Ami and I ever talked one on one. I remember being nervous and impressed at how fearlessly she tried speaking in English.
When we started throwing the frisbee around, Ami and Chieko disappeared. We continued to play for a while when two others joined us. They looked to be high school girls, and one had a killer throwing arm. We continued to play for another 20-30 minutes or so before taking a break. As I walked to meet up with everyone else, i noticed that the two girls were in fact Ami and Chieko. Ami was the one with the great arm =)
We exchanged contact information after that and texted every now and then over the next week or so. Ami eventually asked for my Skype information. We chatted on Skype and after another week or so, she recommended we video chat. It took her pushing for it several times before I finally agreed. We started talking more frequently and eventually saw each other again. During this whole transition to dating phase, I was dealing with a life altering case of IBS. At the time I met Ami I had been living with it for about 8 months. This lead to several occasions where I was unable to go out. Despite this, after about 2 months we started officially dating.
We continued to enjoy learning everything about each other, somehow communicating in a Japanese/English mix (mostly English) with a lot of Google Translate. After several months of this, my 2 year apartment lease was ending and I needed somewhere to live. We both made the decision to try out getting a place together. It was outside Tokyo, but cheaper and three times the size of my previous place. It was here we hatched our future plans.
Ami really wanted to go to English school in the UK, so I Ami contact a school and go through all the motions to get her in. At that time I was planning on moving back to the US. Before we got to leave however, the Tohoku earthquake hit. That led to an interesting 3-4 weeks before departure.
We both left on April 3rd, 2011. We talked daily for hours on end while apart. She eventually got a Student Visa to study here and moved here on July 20th, 2011. We were able to travel and experience many things while living here. After a year here I proposed to her while out on Torch Lake. We had a great impromptu engagement party at my Grandparents.
After talking about it for hours on end, we decided it would be better to do a courtroom marriage. The process to get a green card seemed long and drawn out and we wanted to get that started. We were married on August 10th, 2012 (8/10/12). Ever since then we have been planning the upcoming wedding…