2 Weeks Happiness in Japan

I never thought of Japan as a romantic place until I explored it with my boyfriend. Yes, last year I went back to Japan. Spending days in Japan with him was absolutely fantastic. My all 4 happy hormones – endorphins, serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin (which is the most dominant, by the way!)- have reached their maximum level during that trip. Even now, when I’m trying to remember those precious moments we had, it feels like my brain is trying to produce more serotonin.

Meeting the boyfriend at the airport was one of the most exciting parts. After messaging him that I’m outside the JR ticket booth, I went to the bathroom and fix my face, hair, clothes, and everything that would make me feel fabulous. Then, I saw a man wearing a neon apple green hat. It’s him! Shouted my mind. Roller coaster of emotion overwhelmed me that day. Mostly nervous. It doesn’t matter now where we are, I am so preoccupied of the idea of him talking to my face, the idea that I’d be with him for 9 days, the idea of HIM.

Honestly, I contemplated on whether to write about this travel or not, but the urge to show you how exciting the trip was is strong. Fortunately, I felt the urge to write today. Blogging has always been therapeutic, especially when you wanted to read previous experiences you have written. You can always look back and reminisce. I will try my best to remember everything during this trip and consolidate it here.

While on the train going to Oshiage, he mentioned his favorite dungeons and dragons. I don’t have any idea what it’s all about but it sounded so awesome because he is awesome hehe. I’ve been in Japan before, although I know that he would love this trip (because why the hell not?), I’m still afraid to commit a mistake that would make him feel disappointed. I want this travel to be perfect at least.

It feels like we’re on the train the whole day. Along the way, the atmosphere has started to get colder due to a bit of rain outside. It was a chill and relaxing ride. The weather was about the same last year where we experienced a bit of rain on the first day then a hot summer feel for the rest of our stays.

We had the best 9 days of our lives, and it’s quite hard to sum it all up in one blog. So bear with me.

 

TOKYO SKYTREE

I think it’s already 5 o’clock in the afternoon when we arrived at Richmond Hotel Premier – just a block away from the majestic Tokyo Skytree. He always booked fancy hotels for us, which made me feel so special. Tokyo Skytree in the rain looks like an alien spaceship. Yes, it was that magical.

After exploring the panoramic view of the city from the tallest building in Japan (634 meters in height), we’re off to Coro Coro Comic Legend Cafe for our dinner time, only because we can’t find any other restaurants that are still open. In their menu, you can find so kawaii and Instagrammable food like this one:

 

HELLO AGAIN, AJISAI

We were greeted by the many colours of beautiful Ajisai in the garden of Hasedera. I’ve been here before, but it didn’t stop me from including it on our itinerary. I don’t mind seeing its spectacular beauty again. Its cheerful beauty was so contagious and it feels like you want to be cheerful all day.

 

Continue reading “2 Weeks Happiness in Japan”

Advertisements

JOAN IN JAPAN AT 30!

Travelling. Days when the only thing that matter is what are you going to eat for a day, and it doesn’t need to be budgeted. Everything you want.  Booking and planning all come easy for us. I know right there and then this trip is going to be a blast.

YU’s APARTMENT

The apartment greeted us with two beers and a welcome note from our hosts. Yay! Immediately, I knew I’d love our stay here. Since Yu and Taka weren’t there to welcome us, we received special instructions on how to let ourselves in prior to our trip. Challenging, isn’t it? We do really feel at home and we survived. A variety of liquors, food in the fridge, comics, and a lot of vinyl records are available, but yeah, food and drinks are not for free. I wonder if we’re allowed to play the LPs, because there’s a signage on the wall saying “Play music here”. But it wasn’t directly pointed to the Long playing. I should have asked Yu, but then again, I don’t know how to use that old school music player. By simply browsing their LP records, I can tell that our host had a good taste in music. They got The Beatles, Carpenters, Japanese orchestra records and a lot more. They are comfortable with the idea of allowing strangers in their house without qualms, without judging that they might be a burglar. Ha ha! Perhaps, there’s a CCTV or something. I mean, look at those comics? I can grab one without them realizing it. Plus those vinyl records.

Staying at Yu would probably one of the numerous reasons why I found my trip to be an unforgettable one. I highly recommend this apartment. Check Airbnb and message YU for reservation, quick.

SHIBUYA CROSSING

Hachiko greeted us before crossing Shibuya. Despite many people taking photos of him, we sneaked in. Got a picture with Hachiko, baby. We stayed at Starbucks for a more panoramic view of the busy city of Shibuya. Lovely. What’s the best food to have during rainy days? You bet. We walked and looked for Ramen!

ICHIRAN RAMEN

YES! We will be enjoying the rain while having our first Ramen at Ichiran. I accidentally ordered the Ramen with hard-boiled egg, as I pressed 1 instead of number 2 on their vending order machine. Whether I’m stupid to figure out that the price of the number 1 Ramen is different to the number 2 Ramen, or I get so excited to order something on the vending machine. LOL. That I would never know. Either way, it was fun. Guess what? I didn’t regret that stupid mistake. The hard-boiled egg was so worth it. If ever we’d go back, I’ll definitely order that again. 😛

ichiran ramen jaoan shibuya

One of the servers gets my order over the open space window and she immediately came back with my delicious ramen. She most definitely prepared it to perfection.

ichiran ramen japan shibuya

(A close-up shot of their yummy ramen)

Don’t tell me, this photo doesn’t dry your throat and craved for it?

Is it too early for me to judge and say it was the best food we had? Ha! Maybe, because it’s only our first day. You had me awed by your food already, JAPAN.

SHINJUKU

Strolling around Shinjuku is tiring. You should have a perfect meal in your mind after doing so. Especially if you can’t find where Godzilla head’s coming from. Just like us. The locals are so helpful, they told us where is Godzilla’s hideout. It’s standing on top of a building of a cinema — Toho Cinemas. A cool experience indeed. While making the jump shot and taking photos everywhere, we stumbled on this Robot Restaurant. “Roboto.. Roboto.. Roboto restaurant” — a catchy song from the restaurant’s speaker. Eating there is expensive, so nope.

Continue reading “JOAN IN JAPAN AT 30!”

Pambansang Museo ng Pilipinas: Huling Hirit sa Libreng Tiket

Before Halloween, me and my friends decided to visit the National Museum located at Rizal Park, Manila . Now I’m wondering if “am I really a Filipino?”, because I haven’t been there before, and I didn’t even know why. “Free” is the word that makes us decide to visit the museum soon. So here we are, visiting the ghosts from the past history of our very own country. They are not really ghosts which the exact definition is “immaterial”. It is not a museum made of projectors or hologram for that matter. I just feel like saying it for Halloween feels. Mmmmkay..

I have known the museum to be famous for its painting galleries including the Spoliarium made by Juan Luna. There’s no arguing, one factor that makes the museum worth seeing is the Spoliarium. Want to know the scariest part? We haven’t seen it. Why? Free entrance is equal to a long line of people, and that is why. So in a case like this, it pays to be early at the venue. Well, at least we still have reason to visit the museum again.

National Museum is divided by two: National Art Gallery and Museum of the Filipino People. The latter is the one that we were able to explore. It was located at the back of the National Art Galley. So no need to go any farther.

Kalinga’s Apo Whang Od: The mambabatok. The oldest and the last of the “Mambabatok” or what they called traditional hand-tap tattoo artist.
Ivory Trade (13th Century, I think) – Did you know that some elephants have successfully adapted not to grow their tusks so they won’t get hunted by those poachers? Yep! The natural process of evolution is stepping in, and Elephants are evolving. Tusk-less elephants were being spared by poachers. That’s what I’ve read from some article. 🙂 At the same time, I felt sad because having tusks is such a huge advantage for them, it serves as their weapon and tools to dig. Nonetheless, they seem to understand that the greater threat is “we are” – the humans. 🙁