Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Hanabi

According to Mareng Wikipedia... 
"During the summer in Japan, fireworks festivals (hanabi taikai) are held nearly every day someplace in the country, in total numbering more than 200 during August. The festivals consist of large fireworks shows, the largest of which use between 100,000 and 120,000 rounds (PL Art of Fireworks), and can attract more than 800,000 spectators. Street vendors set up stalls to sell various drinks and staple Japanese food (such as Yakisoba, Okonomiyaki, Takoyaki, kakigori (shaved ice), and traditionally held festival games, such as Kingyo-sukui, or Goldfish scooping.

Even today, men and women attend these events wearing the traditional Yukata, summer Kimono, or Jinbei (men only), collecting in large social circles of family or friends to sit picnic-like, eating and drinking, while watching the show.

The first fireworks festival in Japan was held in 1733." 
 
Just like last year our friend and colleague Hayakawa-san invited us to view hanabi (fireworks) in Chofu City (Tokyo) which is near their place. The event was held at the banks of Tamagawa River. That was Sunday, August 24, 2014. A week after our Australia trip may booking kagad. Yes. Ako na busy. Chararat! Hayakawa-san's husband already reserved a space for us in the venue. Meaning tanghali pa lang yata andun na yata siya. Sobrang bait nilang mag-asawa. The event will start at 6:30pm and we were supposed to meet her at the train station by 5:20pm. But since Madam Joy and I will be wearing yukata (summer kimono), we met her at an earlier time. Gusto kong maiyak nung inoffer ni Hayakawa-san yung yukata niya samin ni Madam. Pangarap kong jackpot kaya yun. Pramis.
 
I chose the light blue colored yukata. ^_^
Akala ko 3 kaming mag-yu-yukata nila Hayakawa-san. Kaso it will take time and sino nga naman mag-dadamit kay Hayakawa-san since ano naman malay namin ni Madam sa ganung bagay. So after Hayakawa-san made our yukatas, Madam did my hair and I did hers.






Si Donya Buding nadalaw sa Japan!


With Hayakawa-san ^_^

Everone brought something so umaapaw ng chibog nung time na yun. Meron spaghetti (nalerkey ako sa effort ng mag-asawang itey na may dala pang sandok), playd shiken, korean bbq, lumpiang shanghai, ham and cheese sticks na nagmukhang turon, at marami pang iba. Kaso hindi ako mashado nakakain kasi nga ang hirap kaya umupo sa lapag ng naka-yukata. Baka mawala sa pwesto mag-show pako ng libre. Tamaan pako ng kidlat. When I say 'hindi ako nakakain ng mashado' ibig sabihin hindi ako naka-lafang ng bonggey na bonggey. Mga 20pcs ng chicken, isang batyang yakisoba at 15 cups na fruit salad. Ganun lang. Na-sad ako ng konti.

Nagsimula na kaming chumicha kahit hindi pa nagsisimula ang hanabi. Baka mapanis kasi yung foods. Hihi -_^V




This is my colleague's daughter (from the Phils.) who just came here in Japan for a vacation. Ang swerte kasi nataon na panahon ng hanabi. Ang mga bata nga naman ngayon kay bi-bigtime! Ako matanda na (22?) ng nakasakay ng eroplano at nakatapak sa ibang bansa. At hindi pako magkakaroon ng passport kung di pako pinadala ni company for a training here in Japan. Pasensha na kung sumegwey pako ng sad story. Ganun talaga pag tumatanda. 


I tried capturing the beautiful fireworks in display in photos but all I had were these blurry pictures. Anyways I had fun and the show was great! At shempre aprub na aprub dahil libre!






Another check in my bucket list (na hindi naman nag-eexist! lels). Sobrang na-enjoy ko ang hanabi na itwu kahit shining like a diamond na ang fez ko sa mantika na dulot ng init at stress. Oo nakaka-stress magsuot ng yukata. At para naman sa aking autumn escapade, sama-sama tayong manalangin at mag-donate (chos! Pero pede rin hihi) para matuloy ang minimithi naming Sapporo/Hokkaido trip.

"Life is like fireworks. You can close your eyes and be scared or open them and enjoy the view."

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Carpe Diem (Isang Linggong Pag-ibig: Adelaide Version)

One beautiful saturday morning, Madam Joy and I were having our breakfast at Tully's. After I finished my heavenly pancakes everything went to a blur and wallah! I already booked a flight from Tokyo to Adelaide for our summer vacation. Watdaep right??!! Deym credit card! Alam mo yung pumunta ka sa palengke para lang bumili ng suka tapos paguwi mo meron ka ng bitbit na kabayo? As usual nadala na naman ako ng bugso ng aking damdamin. Pede rin naman ako umuwi ng pinas kaso kailangan ko pa dumaan sa POEA for the OEC and naiisip ko pa lang naiinis at napapagod nako. Tsaka gusto ko kasing takasan ang init ng summer dito sa Tokyo. Winter kasi sa Australia nun. You know, can't stand the heat. Chararararat! Repeat ng aking Isang Linggong Pag-big entry. Adelaide version naman.
As usual nasa dulo na naman ng walang hanggan ang gate ng Jetstar. Gusto mo ng mura. Ayan magdusa ka! At Narita Airport.
We ate first before boarding the plane. Nagtitipid kasi si watashi at hindi ako kumuha ng meal sa flight namin. UNAGI!!!!!
Actually from Tokyo sa Melbourne ang dating namin. Afternoon of August 9 ang departure  namin from Tokyo then arrival sa Melbourne Airport ng midnight of August 10. Wala kasing direct flight ang Jetstar from Tokyo to Adelaide. And we had to attend my inaanak's christening the next day which will be held in Melbourne. Oo dumayo pa talaga ako ng binyag sa Australia. Ganyan ka-busy schedule ko. Andami bookings chahahahar! After a 10hr-flight diko malaman kung anong mangyayari sakin sa simbahan. Naalala ko kasi yung isang episode sa show ni Mr. Bean na tumumba na lang siya forward while attending church kasi antok na antok siya. Susme. Everything went fine naman and after ng binyag bumiyahe na kami papuntang Adelaide via car. Almost 8 hours din ang byahe. I was very happy to be with Basuraman again. But we both know that it would've been better kung andun din si Miko. 
Most of the times e either nasa bahay lang kami or nasa city. Or nasa Woolworths. Batang Supermarket. Ewan. I just love grocery shopping. And the best thing is naiintindihan ko kung ano yung mga products kasi they are written in english. Unlike here sa Japan nakaka-frustrate madalas. Basta mukhang edible pede na. I remembered one time when we were loooking for some cooking sake. Inabot kami ng 10 years bago namin nakita. May tulong pa yun ng internet.

Pero takot pa rin ako gamitin yung coins sa Australia. Ang tanga lang. Ang hirap naman kasi kabisaduhin. Feeling turista ang gaga. Bills palagi ang pambayad. 
What I like about the place where we have stayed in Adelaide is its accessibility to public transpo like the train. Wala pa naman kasi kaming car ni Basuraman kaya umaasa lang kami sa public transpo kung gusto namin lumibot. Tumbling lang ng 100 times nasa train station ka na. I prefer riding trains than buses. Pero hindi ko alam kung gugustuhin kong sumakay sa MRT sa pinas kesa sa bus. Actually ayokong nagko-commute papuntang Manila kapag nasa Pinas ako kasi feeling ko mas malaki ang chance na mawala ako dun kesa dito sa Tokyo. 
At Glenelg Beach. Ganyan trip namin. Winter tapos beach. At gustung-gusto ko ang piktyur na ito kasi nakikita ko ang haba ng leeg ko. Sobrang dalang nyan!

At parang isang panaginip ulit nasa Adelaide airport na kami by Sunday afternoon (August 17). Waiting for our domestic flight bound for Melbourne.

Bilang mabubuting empleyado e pumasok pa kami kinabukasan. Kahit nasa dulo ng walang hanggan ang gate pagdating sa Narita Airport e ayos lang dahil this time on-time ang Melb-Tokyo flight namin. Yun nga lang pagdating sa bag carousel e naramdaman na namin kagad ang Summer heat ng Japan.
Hindi kami mayaman. Kaya kahit nasaktan ang budget namin dahil sa unexpected travel ko na ito e hindi naman ako nagsisisi. Dumating na kasi ako sa punto ng buhay ko na itinanim ko sa isip ko na panindigan ko lahat ng desisyon na ginagawa ko sa buhay ko. No wasting of time for regrets. Lahat ng nangyayari may dahilan. Move forward kagad. I thank you. Bow.
Tumatanda nako kaya lately mas gusto ko magtravel over buying gadgets/things. Kaya sana magmaterialize ang aming Sapporo trip this autumn! Woot-woot!

Friday, September 5, 2014

Kyoto Trip (2014)

Ang chaka ng title. Wala na kasi ako maisip. Anyways, finally after 5 years of staying here in Japan nakapunta na rin ako sa Kyoto! Salamat kay Ate Joy na walang kahirap-hirap akong naaya sa trip na ito. Impluwensiya niya rin kung bakit nasa Australia na naman ako nung Summer Vacation namin dito sa Japan (that would be my next post after this! sana mag-materialize jarjar!).

PLANNING THE TRIP

TIP No. 1 Avail a Shinkansen (Bullet Train) plus Accommodation Package (via Japanican.com). Pasok na pasok sa banga ng katipiran ang package na itwu. Nalaman ko ito from a colleague na nagpunta rin ng Kyoto noong unang panahon. We availed the 3 days 2 nights Tokyo-Kyoto Package for 33,000 yen per person. Actually meron pa nga akong nakita na mas mura which is 26,500 per person. Kaso pagcheck ko kinabukasan di na available. Imagine yung price pa lang ng Shinkansen Tickets from Tokyo to Kyoto (round trip) is nagkakahalaga na ng almost 28,000 yen. Parang pinamimigay na lang yung Hotel Accommodation (exag na kung exag). We think we got a good deal.

Almost 2 months before the trip nagbook na kami. July 19-21. Long weekend so expect na namin madaling mapupuno ang mga slots.

Ang hindi ko lang nagustuhan sa pagbu-book namin e ide-deliver nila yung tickets at least 1 day before the departure date. In our case it was 2 days. Nakakangarag kasi na anlapit na nung alis niyo tapos wala pa yung tickets.

Last time kong nakasakay ng bullet train was 6 or 7 years ago na yata. Pinadala ako ni former company sa Gifu Japan for a training tapos sumide-trip ako sa Tokyo for a job interview. E sagot naman nung nag-interview yung pamasahe ko sa shinkansen kaya go go go lang! Hindi ko man nakuha yung work masaya naman ako kasi nakapunta ako ng Tokyo ng libre. Apir!


Sana ganito ang legroom sa mga economy flights.... ~_~




ACCOMMODATION

TIP No. 2 For the accommodation: the nearer to the train station, the betterererer! Blessing na rin na hindi namin nakuha yung una naming nakitang package. We stayed at New Miyako Hotel which is located 2-5 minutes away from Kyoto Station. Very convenient!

-malapit sa train and bus station
-maraming shops and restaurants na makakainan.
-kapag pagod na kami sa kakagala we can return anytime to our hotel to rest. tapos gala ulit.
-literally meron siyang katabing mall (Aeon Mall)

And what I love about New Miyako Hotel is its staff. Very very very very friendly and accommodating! A perfect 100 rating! Walang halong exaggeration at kaeklavoohan. Kahit sinong lapitan mo he/she will respond nicely and in English. Actually nagkaroon ng konting-konting aberya sa room na binigay samin. I booked for a twin bedroom pero double bedroom yung binigay samin. So I called the person in the reception and told about the mistake in the room. Walang patumpik-tumpik nilipat kami sa twin bedroom (no extra charge). Plus points pa na yung room is malapit sa lift (the first one was located sa dulo ng walang hanggan) and sa vending machine with water and ice dispenser.

The room is spacious enough. Hindi naman ako maselan when it comes to hotel rooms. May 32in LCD TV and free wifi reception (na hindi ko nasubukan kasi meron kaming pocket wifi). Isa pang ikinatuwa ko sa hotel na itey ay ang complete bathroom amenities. Panalong-panalo rin ang shampoo, conditioner and facial wash. Nakaka-tempt itanong kung ano yung brand. Ang chaka lang hehe.

Kinda Japanese style yung room meaning mejo maliit yung bathroom and kinda matigas yung bed. And again wala rin namang problem sakin dahil I'm used to this kind of style. Hindi ko lang feel mashado yung hallway and carpeting. Feeling nasa horror movie akesh.




ITINERARY

Day 1

From Tokyo we boarded a Hikari Shinkansen bound for Kyoto. Around 2 hours ang byahe.
We arrived at Kyoto at around 10AM and we immediately proceeded to New Miyako Hotel. Since 2PM pa ang check-in time we had our things deposited in the hotel's storage area (for free) para masimulan na ang paggala.

TIP No. 3 Avail the 1-day City Bus Pass. As long as pasok sa city bus route ang pupuntahan mo unlimited ang bus ride for that day (for 500yen). Meron din yatang 2 or 3 days and meron ding kasama ang train fare. A very cheap and convenient way of touring around Kyoto.

-Kinkaku-ji Shrine
We thought of visiting another temple before heading back to our hotel but it was just soooooo hot that day and feeling namin malapit na kami mag-evaporate or mag-turn into ashes.




-Return to Kyoto Station to have lunch at a Korean Restaurant located at Porta (underneath Kyoto Station). My first time to eat a bibimbap and I liked it beriberiberiberimachi!!!



-Check-in at hotel. Rest then change costume. Si Ate Joy nag-power nap ng 20minutes. Ako 2 hours! ganun ako mag-power nap haha

-Kiyomizu-dera







-Ninen-zaka and Sannen-zaka. We saw this Pagoda structure but we we're too pagoda (I know ang korni!) to go near it so picture-picture na lang sa malayo.







-Gion district and Yasaka Jinja
Dapat sa Gion district kami magdi-dinner kaso hindi namin feel. (Aaminin ko na. Ang mahalia! Purita mode on.) But I think if you really want to experience an authentic Japanese cuisine (with matching "ramdam na ramdam ko talaga na nasa Japan ako!"feeling) Gion district is the place.





-Return to Kyoto Station for dinner.
At dahil malapit ng magsara ang mga shops nauwi kami sa Gindaco. My most ever favorite the best takoyaki shop!



Day 2

-Breakfast at Mister Donut. Mura na mabilis pa kainin (^_^)V




-Uji
Before going to Byoudoin Temple we were supposed to visit a shrine that is said to be the oldest in Japan. Unfortunately dahil hindi kami nagbaligtad ng damit e napadpad kami sa isang small nameless shrine. At bago pa kami mapunta sa ibang dimensiyon e pinuntahan na namin ang Byoudoin Temple.


The Phoenix Hall inside Byoudoin Temple which can be seen in a 10yen Japanese coin.

-Nara (Todaiji Temple)
Hindi kumpleto ang pasyal kapag walang maling pagsakay ng bus na naganap. Kaya nadelay ang sched namin by 1hour dahil sa kabilang side papunta yung bus na nasakyan namin. Anyways, habang tirik na tirik si haring araw e nakipag-lamyerda kami sa mga usa! Andaming usa. And they are roaming freely around the area. Sayang nga hindi ako nakakita ng usa na tumatawid sa pedestrian lane.





-Late lunch at KFC (near Nara Station)
Gutom na kasi kami. Ang taong gutom walang oras sa paghahanap at walang panahon sa pagte-take ng risk kumain sa isang restaurant na walang kasiguraduhan kung mabubusog siya o hindi.

-Fushimi Inari Shrine
Dapat derecho balik na kami Kyoto Station kasi feeling namin nagka-crackle na yung balat namin sa pagkakatusta ni haring araw. Since madadaanan naman ang Fushimi Inari Shrine (via Nara Line) e dumaan na kami. At dahil hapon na sobrang dami na ng tao.





Balik ulit sa hotel para magpahinga at mag-change costume. Tapos larga ulit.

-Pontocho and Nishiki Market
Nung nag-courtesy call kami sa Zara nag-full bar ang energy na Madam Joy. Parang naka-turbo mode. Ito yata ang highlight ng pagpunta namin sa lugar na itey. Lels.






-Okonomiyaki Night at Machiya Restaurant (Porta/Kyoto Station)



Day 3

-Breakfast buffet at the hotel. Hello baconssssssss!

-Arashiyama Bamboo Grove
Totoo ang kasabihang "The early bird catches the worm." And this time our worm is having the place to ourselves. The place was so serene, beautiful and cool.Sulit na sulit ang pagbangon ng maaga!









-Balik hotel to pack our things and rest before going back to Tokyo.


One of the best vacations that I've ever had. Kung tatanungin niyo ko kung babalik ba ako sa Kyoto para magbakasyon kung may pagkakataon? Oong-oo! Siyempre! Siguradong-sigurado! Apir! V(^_^)V

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Isang Linggong Pag-ibig

This post has been in draft for like 24 years and zayangness naman kung hindi ko ipo-post. Actually it kinda fucked up after copying and pasting it here in blogger that's why I can't post it. Anyways I am in the mood to retype it again so here. Can I just mention how I love Pentatonix? As in. Superrrrr.... 

---------



Kelan lang nung huli akong nagpost. Oo mga 20 years ago. At nandito na naman ako sa lupain ni Hello Kitty. Nasa harap ng aking work station habang gumigiling sa saliw ng "BOOM PANES".

April 29, 2014 Martes - Umuulan. Walang weyting sheyd sa bus stop. 30Kg luggage plus 10Kg hand carry. Dalawang tao, isang payong. Konting kembot na lang from bus stop ulit to train station. Kaso sadyang mapagbiro ang panahon. "heto akoowoohoo, basang-basa sa ulaaaaan..."

Dahil maaga kami ni Ate Joy nagcheck-in, pinalampas ni kind girl ang excess baggage naming 1.4Kg. Kaso need namin itong ilipat sa hand carry pagdating ng Gold Coast. Carry na namin yun. Ang masakit lang dahil siguro budget airline e nasa dulo ng walang hanggan ang gate namin. Yung 10Kg kong carry-on luggage e parang naging 50Kg.

First time kong bumyahe sa isang 9hr flight. Ang pinakamatagal ko na kasi e 4hrs (tokyo-manila). Excited kong pinili yung upuan malapit sa restroom. Bukod sa madalas may dumadaan sa tabi ko (isle side) e isa pang disadvantage ay naririnig ko ang kada-flush ng toilet.

April 30, 2014 Miyerkules
- Good morning Australia! Hello Gold Coast! 

Another 2 and a half hour flight from Gold Coast to Melbourne. 

Kinda mahaba ang pila sa immigration pero wala naman naging problem. Suaveng-suave. Kaso nagmamadali kami kasi nadelay yung paglapag ng plane and we have to hurry because we had to catch our gold coast to melbourne flight. Buti na lang pagdating sa customs di na pinabuklat yung gamit namin. We were able to move the excess baggage so a-ok kami pagdating sa check-in.

11:30am - Hello Melbourne! Kaso sa layo nung place pinagpick-upan samin sa airport e feeling ko 100Kg yung dala-dala kong gamit.

After 4 months nagkita na ulit kami ni Miko! Babyng-baby pa siya nung huli ko siyang nakita. Ngayon e isa ng napakalikot na bata.


At Brighton Beach

Try mong malula anak. Kahit konti lang. At Eureka Skydeck88.

Flinders Street Station at the back.
 
Bringing Disney in Oz

Ang weird lang ng panahon sa Melb. It's already autumn so medyo malamig na. Unlike dito sa Japan pag sinabi mong malamig e malamig. Mainit kung mainit. 

Sa Melb ko na-experience yung 4 seasons in 1 day. 

Tamang lamig na parang spring tapos biglang aaraw na parang summer. Then kukulimlim and giginaw na parang autumn with matching ulan tapos lalamig na ng sobra na para naming winter. Kalerkey! Pero sabi nila sa Melb lang yun. At ang diversity ng lahi/races amazing! Dito sa Japan maraming Hapon at outnumbered kaming mga foreigners. 

Pagdating ko ng Werribee diko makita kung asan ang mga Australians kasi iba-iba talaga ang mga lahi na nakikita ko. From Chinese, Indians, Pinoy, etc. 

At dito sa Japan feeling ko best in english ako dahil hindi ganun karami ang marunong magsalita ng english. English carabao ok na. Kaso pagdating ng Australia muntik nakong mag-nosebleed plus internal hemorrhage.  Jusmio accent pa lang gusto ko ng himatayin.

Since Miko was sick we opted to stay at the house most of the times lalo at nag-uulan. Eto yung bakasyon na kahit hindi kami masyadong pumapasyal masayang-masaya ako kasi kasama ko yung mag-ama ko. I was a mum again for 1 week.

Mejo nahirapan ako sa coins ng Australia. The lowest denomination is 5 cents. Dito naman ang coins e 100, 50, 10, 5 and 1 yen. Tapos anlalaki ng sizes and it doesn't mean malaki yung size malaki yung value. Instead of giving 105 AUD sa cashier, ang binigay ko e 100 dollars and 20 cents. I thought I gave him 120 dollars. Natanga lang.


May 6, 2014 Tuesday - Ang bilis ng araw. Ayos na yung maleta ko. Our flight back to Japan was 11pm and I was saying my goodbyes to my mag-ama by 8pm. 

Parang panaginip lang ang lahat. 9am kinabukasan pa ang flight nila Basuraman and Miko.
 
Pagdating namin ng Melbourne airport ang haba na ng pila sa check-in counter. We had no roblem again with our check-in luggage kaso around 10Kg na naman carry-on luggage ko. Kaso pagdating sa screening area nakulimbat ang aking facial wash. Goodbye $11! Akala ko kasi inilagay ni Ate Joy sa check-in luggage namin. 

Tapos nakakairita pa yung isang staff. Chika kasi ng chika so hindi ko muna ipinasok yung gamit ko sa machine kasi dito sa Japan sila yung magpapasok. E di pagbalik niya kinda humaba pila. Sabihan ba naman ako na "What are you waiting for? An invitation?" What a dickhead!

Delayed ang flight ng 1 hr. Jusmio marimar. Wish ko lang umabot pa kami ni Ate Joy sa office. May pasok na kasi ng May 7 and gusto ko sana makapasok sa hapon kasi tinitipid ko yung leaves ko.

May 7, 2014 Wednesday
– Hello ulit Japan. Time check: 9am na kami nakalabas ng plane. 

As usual dahil budget airline nasa dulo ng walang hanggan ang gate namin. We're almost running dahil nga need namin maabutan ang train. Pagod ka sa byahe tapos may 10Kg kang carry-on luggage na bitbit habang tumatakbo. Kahit anlapit lang ng bahay sa train station e nakuha naming mag-taxi. Kasi 12nn na kami nakadating ng train station. 

Pagdating ng bahay walang ligo-ligo. Toothbrush, hilamos, palit ng t-shirt at sapatos, kuha ng bag kung nasaan ang ID sabay alis sakay ng bisikleta papunta ng office. 12:30pm nasa office na kami. 12:45 ang tapos ng lunch break.

Diko maintindihan yung nararamdaman ko yung time na yun. Dahil sa pagod at antok. Para akong nilalagnat na bigla na lang babagsak. Tapos meron pa kaming meeting.

More than a week na rin mula ng bumalik ako dito. 

Sa ngayon mejo matatagalan kung kelan ulit kami magkikita nila Miko at Basuraman. Konting tiis pa. Dahil sa susunod na pagkikita namin alam ko hindi na kami mula maghihiwalay tatlo. ^_^
 

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