I went to Japan in 2002 with the intention to establish myself as a photojournalist based in Tokyo. I sold my car terminated the contract on my apartment in Malmö and informed all the Swedish Newspapers I had ever worked for that I was their new man in East Asia. A week before my departure in February 2002 my wife told me she was pregnant, and the plan changed.
The stay wasn’t indefinite anymore. To bring up a child in Tokyo with uncertain income became too much of a risk, and I was not prepared to live by myself far away from my child.
Instead it became half a year of interesting jobs for different Swedish newspapers, with travels outside Tokyo to Osaka, Kyoto and Sendai with sumo wrestlers in training, late night evening schools, Panasonic Digital Retirement Home and recycling facility, Kamikaze-survivors and World Cup soccer fans etc.
Working as a photojournalist gave me access to far more of the Japanese society than otherwise had been possible. I left a position as a fairly well established Tokyo based photojournalist and came home to a hunt for accommodation and occupation, but also to the birth of a much loved son.