YouTube has grown and grown until it’s overgrown itself. And just like in a garden plagued by weeds, it can be hard nowadays to find those beautiful small flowers that spring here and there, trying to push their way through the mess. Luckily, the algorithm threw something nice at me one day, a channel called Samurai Matcha.
Aki, the creator, is a school teacher who lives in a small village in Japan. He rode through Canada, America, and Colombia on his bamboo bike, a journey during which he became a minimalist.
Aki’s videos are not only interesting and engaging but unbelievably peaceful. His friendly demeanor and child-like joy seep through the screen and draw you into the adventure, whether it’s visiting a snowy monkey park in Nagano or building an Igloo.
Aki also has a few videos about his minimalist lifestyle. I was never one to enjoy videos about minimalism, however, his videos don’t feel forced. It’s actually the exact opposite; they feel non-judgemental and welcoming. He invites his viewers to explore minimalism but never suggests it’s the only way.
He also presents minimalism in a fun, enjoyable way; from talking about the things in his room that make him happy to doing minimalism challenges that may seem slightly crazy to some.
Aki also makes mini-guides to life in Japan and Japanese culture. He offers a new, unique point of view on life in Japan, especially when compared to bigger creators who are based mainly in cities.
Japanese Tea Ceremony is a big part of Aki’s life. According to his own words, the tea ceremony connects people from all around the world. He did the ceremony during his bike trips and performs it for himself every morning.
It’s seen in many of his videos—for example, he performs the ceremony in the igloo he builds—but he also makes videos specifically about it.
Overall, Aki’s videos are very relaxing to watch and seeing one before I start work or have my own afternoon tea always helps me calm my mind down and focus on the task at hand. Are they for everyone? Probably not. We all come to the internet for different things. But are they a beautiful piece of peace in a loud world? Definitely.
I wanted to share Aki’s channel with you all because it’s still travel-related (and that’s what we do here) but it’s also very homey and helps me miss my home a bit less. I hope you all enjoy Aki’s work.