Emily Millar, 35, and Takahiro Muramatsu, 44, met at a party in 2009. They live with their son in Aichi Prefecture, central Japan

When Takahiro firstly recognise Emily at a birthday party in 2009, she was carrying a distinctive pink camera.” I’d ever seen one before, so I proceeded up and requested her about it. I was looking for an opportunity to speak to her ,” he says. But when he told her his identify, her reaction wasn’t fairly what he expected.” I was scandalized because he had the same name as my previous boyfriend, who was killed in a auto accident a few months earlier ,” Emily says. Though she had only dated him for a short period, she was devastated by his death.” He was very young and it was all over the word, it is therefore had been quite a hard time for me .” Though she didn’t believe in fate, she says the chances of meeting two people with the same name” felt ghostly “.

At the party they chit-chat about their interest in photography, before she invited him to see her band play the following night. It wasn’t until a week later that she told Takahiro about her previous boyfriend.” I unexpectedly understood why her idiom went a little funny ,” he clarifies.” It all made sense .”

Emily, who is initially from Tasmania, had been living in Japan for three years and was working as a teacher when they met.” After he came to my gig, “were having” our first time in Starbucks and some of my students came in. They were asking if he was my boyfriend, which was embarrassing ,” she laughs.

Within a week, though, Takahiro had asked Emily to meet his family.” I thought it was fast ,” she says,” but it felt so ordinary and natural seeing each other. It was the first time I’d felt that with another person .”

A few months later, Takahiro had the chance to be interviewed for a occupation in Jamaica, but didn’t take up the present.” I knew it would necessitate leaving the country for a couple of years. I turned it down at the very last minute. Maybe it was my subconscious tell people to stay .”

Over the next two years, the couple explored Japan, taking their cameras with them everywhere they croaked. They also shared a ardour for nutrient, and experienced trying out ramen restaurants and whisky tables in brand-new places.

” We would travel to see their own families regularly and I too had the chance to visit Tasmania in 2010, which was beautiful ,” says Takahiro.

Emily
Emily and Takahiro on their marry daytime in 2011. Photograph: Provided by Emily Millar

A year later, they got married in Sapporo in northern Japan, where they lived at the time.” It’s not an easy target to get to, so it was a small wedding. We celebrated with 20 of our closest family and friends who came from Tasmania and Japan ,” says Emily.” Then we went on honeymoon to Hawaii, which is a really popular destination for Japanese couples .”

She adds that she didn’t have to change her identify like most Japanese marriages must do by law. As she was a foreigner, it wasn’t compulsory for the couple to have the same surname.

The couple speak English and Japanese.” I do get homesick sometimes ,” Emily says.” It’s nice that he understands my own language and perspective .” She says he is easygoing and a great sounding board when she is feeling emphasized; he adoration how open-minded and countenancing she is.” She’s also a bright cook. When I firstly assembled her, she wasn’t good but I never told her. She’s amazing now though .”

The couple are now living gladly in the area of Japan where they first gratified, with their four-year-old son. However, Emily admits she misses her dwelling, and their long-term plan is to move to Australia.” Only before we match I had been planning to go back to Tasmania, but now I’ve been here 13 years because it only felt right ,” says Emily.” I’d never believed in finding’ the one’ or anything like that. But when he told me his identify I had this internal freakout. It’s been 10 times because we encountered but I’ve never met another Takahiro since .”

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