Sunday, September 27, 2009

Japan Short Notes #6

Day 7 - 22/09/09

PH: Labour's Day (or similar)

Was bored of shopping centre and the holiday crowd. Was glad when T brought us to a market to buy ingredients for her Birthday BBQ the next day. We went Matsubara and we were amazed at their prices! Cheaper and huge vegetables and seafood.

Ate Yakitori - 60¥ (SGD 0.90), other places 100¥ and above, and the mochi balls with red bean paste and sesame.

Dinner was at a tempura store. Again, the portion was huge! Ebi, pumpkin, brinjal tempura. Around 800¥ (SGD 11.50) So full and smelly because of the exhaust pipe from cooking but oh so satisfied!

Day 8 - 23/09/09

PH: Autumn Equinox Day (similar to our Qing Ming)

A full day of BBQ birthday celebrations. Lots of food, scallop, sanma and Japanese Lobster. Again HugE! They were live and were BBQ live. Pain* My grandnephew R cried and told her grandpa (our cousin T) to take it off the grill because it's hot. T joked that they are having onsen and R cried and cried because he finds it painful and couldn't watch it.

I have to say the meat is sweet and good.

ok, got to go and sleep, moving on to Osaka and Hiroshima tomorrow morning.

Good nite.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Japan Short Notes #5

Day 5 - 20/09/09

Went to a アルパカ farm with K & family. アルパカar-ru-pa-ka is also known as alpaca.
They are so cute, I fed them and their tongue feels like a dog, they just lick the food off your palm.
Found this on youtube and K told me that alpaca became popular after this ad, cos they are so fluffy!

Following that, we went to Mitsui Outlet park Yokohama Bayside. Some clothes are really nice, but I consider ex as they are not suitable for Sg climate.

Day 6 - 21/09/09

PH: Respect for elders Day (no kidding!)

Monday. Sunny. Weather was starting to get hot again. except for occasional cool winds. We went to
Yokohama Motion Blue (Bayside Area- Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse Area) and listened to a jazz
performance with Cousin T and wife and her sister. The performers was a band known as Time Five, a
group that was formed 41 years ago! Great performance! I really enjoyed myself
and T shouted "Encore" at the end and they obliged with another song.
It was my first time in a jazz bar, great experience.

Earlier in the day, before going to the shopping area, we queued at a Ramen shop (Er Lang Ramen) for 1
hour!!!! That's very long! Shop has space for only 8 people, really like what you see on TV. The noodle
portion was HUGE! About 650¥ (SGD 10), cheap for Japan standard. Pork based soup, 2 slices of pork
that was so soft and tender. But I felt the soup was a little too oily for me. One bad thing happened though,
I was splashed with a cup of water in the shop by a customer. He tripped and I was wet. He was really
apologetic and the cook and owner there gave me towels and keep saying sorry and trying to clean me. I was
naturally pissed but pai sey cos centre of attention but was thankful thay it's just water and not hot tea!

After lunch, we walked around the Hillside area, lots of shopping centre, lots of people as it was a PH.
There were busking, fire performance and lots of rides. There was a lot of event going on as they celebrates
Yokohama 150th anniversary.Went to H&M and they crowd was 'WHOA'! The first and only H&M shop
in Yokohama, that's why alot of people were shopping there. Also visited Hard Rock.

To celebrate Yokohama 150th anniversary, there was alot of events, Have a look here. There was a mechanical
robot designed by a French art group La Machine. They call it spider, we watched the performance where it spurt
water and walks menacingly from a bridge, for free!

After the performance, we took a walk along the Mother Port area and admire the lights of the port towards
Chinatown. Dinner was chinese noodle Kiam Chey soup at a Chinese restaurant at Yokohama Chinatown.
Also visited cousin-in-law's sister's apartment. Her dog is very cute, mixed of Beagle and Pug, funny face
they say but he looks at you adoringly when you stroked him.And she has a LV luggage! Though I would
only see that in magazines with Hollywood stars. Her bag is an antique!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Japan Short Notes #4

Day 10 - 25/09/09

Beautiful sunset at 5.53pm.
Taken from the bedroom window.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Japan Short Notes #3

Day 4 - 19/09/09

Took a train to Kawasaki, a station between Yokohama and Tokyo. The crowd is starting to form at various shopping centre because of the pending long weekend.

We ate ice cream. The ice cream was only a quarter, remaining is filled with krispy cereals. Because it's autumn, there's alot of limited edition products. Eg. Pumpkin, sweet potato and chestnut. Yup, there's a chestnut on the ice cream.

We listened to a mini concert at the shopping centre - Larzona and drank Strabucks coffee- Creme Brulee. Similar to Sg Caramel Macchiato. This artist is not well known. Not may people lined up for her autograph. Her album cost close to 3000¥. Almost SGD 45!
We also went to Kawasaki B shopping mall but I prefer Larzona. Niece K bought us a roll cake form Man Chou Chou. Famous from Osaka. It's so soft, the cream in the middle is oh so smooth, it's perfect!

Dinner was home cooked food. K cooked fried noodles Japanese style. =D

Pardon the quality of the photographs. These are taken by my mobile for blogging. I did not ask my cousin T for another SD card adaptor.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Japan Short Notes #2

Day 2 - 17/09/09

We went Yokohama Station and shopped around. Ate Mister Donut for the first time and saw people queueing for Krispy Creme donuts. Will try when I have the chance. Mister Donut is just so so. The texture of the bread is rather soft and on the 'wet' side, not as nice as the donuts in Sg, The Donut Factory.

Was amazed at R. He was active and energetic for the entire 6 hours that we were out.

Dinner was home cooked food.

Day 3 - 18/09/09

Spent the day at Yokohama Sea Paradise. The aquarium was awesome! It's simply huge, the fishes are next to you and it's an amazing experience to have school of fishes swimming above you in close proximity. Feels surreal. It's about 3 stories high with about 100 000 sea creatures.

I was able to stroke a whale (feels like leather) and touched a star fish (very rough). I didn't touched the dolphin as they didn't swim close to the side of the tank. We watched the performance by the sea animals - Great! and took the roller coaster ride, viking and the 107m drop one (I chickened out on that).

As a family, we went to a sushi restaurant and ate conveyer belt sushi at 100¥ each. Tried natto sushi and scallop and ebi sushi. We were stuffed!!!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Japan Short Notes #1

Greetings from Japan!

It's Day 5 here and I'm cool and relaxed sitting here in my cousin in law's place with nice cool breeze blowing in. The weather has been pretty good, averaging 25 degrees celcius daily and dropping to a nice cool 19 degrees celcius at night. Hubby's cousin T and family has been very kind to us, feeding us to lovely meals and preparing breakfast for us daily. We hate to be such a bother but they seems very happy to have company and though we do not mind taking the train alone to explore, our niece- K worries about us getting lost.

Our cousin has also been very kind to set up a Mac laptop and internet access in our room. He understands hubby's needs to get access to emails and well, our needs to be connected. =D

ok, I plan to do daily recap of each day in short notes.

Day 1 - 16/09/09

Depart Sg at 815am by ANA. Good trip, flight 50% full, lots of empty seats, saw people sleeping and occupying rows of sleep. we sat at the E exit for leg space. Hubby watched Terminator and Night of the Museum 2. I read half of Tess Gerritsen's Body Double, slept for 2 hrs. Had a horrible experience prior to leaving home for airport. I threw up my previous night dinner of herbal steamboat eaten at D&L place. No idea why, threw up like a merlion, I was terrified of falling sick man. Worried that I won't be OK. After 8 times of heaving, I prayed and it finally stopped. I took Stemetil and ate half a muffin and drank some water at the airport.

ANA provided only 1 meal (so stingy.. hubby says maybe cos our tickets was cheap?). Some fettucine pasta and salad. Good meal actually, just couldn't eat much at it was early. Around 9.30am. Gave most of my share to hubby.

I started to get really hungry at 3pm (Japan time). There was only rice cracker and green tea or juices. Then they served Haagen Daz Strawberry ice cream and I decided to heck it and ate it. But of course hald goes to hubby too.. =)

Arrived at Narita airport at 4.30pm, custom check was a little strict, guy asked hubby lots of question about place of accomodation but i got through pretty quick. Lady at luggage custom clearance asked more questions.

A little joke. lady at luggage clearance asked where are we going now. Hubby misunderstood and told her we are going Yokohama, followed by Osaka, Kyoto, Nara and etc. The lady looks a little stunned and overloaded with all the info and I started laughing. Then she started laughing and we got through.

Took an hour of bus limosine from airport and sky started to get dark at 6pm. Niece K with son Rion came to pick us at YCAT and we met with cousin at this great soba restaurant. Regardless of the amout of soba (small, medium or Mt Fuji) the prices are the same. We had the medium servings and we finished only half. The amount was huge! There was also ebi and veg tempura at the side. All for 1000¥ (S$15)!

Another little joke.

At Changi airport, our luggage was overweight. 56kg. Lady was a little lost for words.... she stared at the screen, luggage and us and finally asked...

"Mr T, are you going to Japan for business?" he said no.
"But, you go Japan so heavy, come back how?"
I think was genuinely concerned.

I told her " They are all gifts" * smiles*
She seems reassured, yay, no extra charges!
I've got a feeling our return luggage will be worse....

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Meeting Mr Precious Moments himself!

I have always have a thing for precious moments.. it's their eyes, or simply because they are so innocent and cute. I received my first PM figurine gift when I was 17 or 18.... and I'm sold!

I've counted and I have about 13 figurines at home. I just want to buy everything! But $ and space is always an issue with me. Anyway I'm adding on to my collection slowly and enjoying them in the shops.

 Sat, hubby and I went for the PM event at Raffles City and we get to see Mr Sam Butcher, the creator of PM. For a man with such a fierce surname, he is genteel and patient. He signs on each figurines and doll carefully. My guess is he's pushing 80 but I hope he will create more stories with each figurines.

Posing with our figurines. The staffs are very nice and excited to take pictures all the time. I think they must have liked PM too.

Holiday surprises are filled with air

Love is always with us

I'll be your shelter in the storm

God is our shelter and our protector from all the rages in the world. Let us live in His glory!

What do you see when you looked into your glass?

and the cookie jar?

Monday, September 7, 2009