I was an Uchi Deshi for two years in Taipei
. It was pretty tough. Chili winters, hot summers, and a long of training hours in the early morning. After which I had a full time job teaching English. (That was the great part, I ended up saving a bunch of money)
Being an Uchi Deshi is kind of like going off to college full time and majoring in Aikido Studies. It is a very serious way to get into the study of the Aikido culture. In my case a chance to study Aikido, Chinese language (Taiwan's Aikido naturally is done in Chinese, which means Chinese classes come with the territory), farming, how sweeping a drive way can improve your jo(the drive way was huge), Zen meditation (Ch'an in Chinese), how to walk up a mountain stream in the middle of a typhoon in so the dojo will have water in the morning, scuba diving(helps teach relaxed controled breathing under stress), etc...
It will be hardwork, fun, and hopefully life changing as it was for me.