Posted in Art, Beauty, Experience, Family, Feelings, Food, Friends, Health, Hotel, International Culture, Music, Place, Restaurants, Shop, Shopping, Travel

Trip to Bulgaria and Romania (Day 4)

Today is the main day of this trip: Rose Festival.

We are scheduled to leave hotel for Kazanlak at 6:45 am; as such, I took a quick breakfast at 5:30 am then Sayonara Plovdiv.

Bulgaria has rich soil so the country’s self efficiency is high.

Bulgaria imports food only during winter.

I can see many farms at the road side.

Kazanlak is famous for production of poppy, lavender and rose.

This is lavender farm, looks nice in purple.

The type of Rose suited for extracting rose oil is Damask Rose.

Bulgarian believes Damask Rose was brought by Thracians.

On the other hand, some claim Damask Rose was brought by Turkish/Ottoman.

This theory is also supported because production of rose oil was industrialized during Ottoman Empire.

Rose requires rich soil, enough sunshine and balanced humidity.

Due to above requirements, roses are commonly planted at winery grape yards to alert soil condition.

To produce 1kg of rose oil, it requires 3,000 roses; 1 drop requires 120 roses.

Once rose oil was traded equally as gold.

No wonder it’s precious.

Rose is national flower of Bulgaria.

This morning, we departed early for rose picking.

It is better to pick roses early morning to keep better/stronger fragrance.

Rose oil is commonly used as one of ingredients for major brands’ perfume to keep lasting fragrance.

Rose oil is also used as an ingredient for cosmetics because of its performance: anti-aging, antibacterial effects, moisturizing and even good for applying insect bites.

It is also used for supplement: kidney stone, constipation, etc.

When we consume rose jam, we need to be easy with it; it might force you to go to toilet often! hahaha

I bought rose oil, hand cream, jam and lokum for myself.

I can enjoy rose picking, shopping and even watching Bulgarian Folk Dance at Ethnographic Complex Damascena, Kazanlak.

Bulgarian Folk Dance and songs.

We moved to the Rose Festival Parade.

This parade started in 1903.

The total population of Kazanlak is about 50,000, but over 100 buses of tourists visit the town for Rose Festival.

They are Queen of Rose.

This parade is heart warming because it is obviously hand-made by local community.

At last, all of us (local people and tourists) dance together.

We had BBQ for lunch,

Drinks are included. Yeah!

After lunch, we visited Shipka Memorial Church, also known as Memorial Temple of the Birth of Christ.

On the way to Veliko Turnovo, we stopped by at one of parking areas to try pure water buffalo yogurt with local honey.

Both yogurt and honey are so rich and delicious that I would recommend to try it.

We arrived Veliko Turnovo and checked in at Hotel Meridian Bolyarski.

It has a tremendous view.

We had dinner at hotel restaurant.

We also enjoyed live music while eating and chatting.

We had a good time at our table.

After dinner, we went for a short walk; this town is very peaceful.

It’s been a long day.

I soaked my body to rose bath to unwind my tired body.

Good night.

Posted in Action, Art, Experience, Feelings, Food, Friends, Hotel, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Music, Place, Restaurants, Tokyo, Travel

Crazy Action

On Monday, I had a full day back-to-back business meetings because all meetings became 2 hours meeting.

I even missed my lunch.

When we finished at 5 pm, we rushed to Tokyo Station to catch a Shinkansen (bullet train) to go to Kyoto.

I was invited to Ohana (private time with Geisha) to have fun with Geisha!

I had an important meeting next day at 9:30 am at Kawasaki, Kanazawa.

It’s a crazy plan but it was manageable if I take the first Shinkansen back to Tokyo…hopped on the next available Shinkansen for Kyoto.

Quickly checked in at Kyoto Century Hotel which is conveniently located next to Kyoto Station.

The room is modern, clean and cozy.

Then rushed to Ochaya-san (Geisha Tea House).

Others waited for us to arrive to start the evening.

We had nice tori-nabe (chicken pot) for dinner; chicken are so fresh that it requires a few tens of seconds of cooking in boiling soup.

Followed by dance.

We also played Ozashiki Asobi (games).

It was magically fun!!!

The next day, I managed to wake up 5 am to catch 6:17 am Shinkansen back to Tokyo to attend meetings.

After meetings, I attended a business dinner.

Since I had to arrange the dinner, I decided to organize it at my favorite Tempura restaurant Mikaku, Roppongi.

This restaurant is my favorite because tempura are so crispy; chef cooks in front of us!

I had nice Haze Hire Zake (grilled goby fish fin sake) to enjoy these tempura.

Grilled fish fin adds nice roasty smell and flavor to sake.

I had Ten-don (tempura rice bowl) for my rice.

We had nice home made strawberry sorbet to refresh our mouth.

Chef grows vegetables and even these strawberries.

The following morning, my friend left Tokyo for Hong Kong to continue her business trip.

Nothing was planned in advance, but these three days became memorable.

Yes, this time I took many crazy actions; but I think crazy actions add spice to our life. hahaha

Posted in Art, Family, Feelings, Food, Japan Technology, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Tokyo

Quality Time with Uncle & Aunty

The other day I gave a lift to my uncle.

It was nothing because going by two (Mom and I) or three (Uncle, Mom and I) are the same.

However, he want to show his appreciation by inviting us (Mom and I) to his apartment.


It was nice of them to prepare high-tea for us.


I was driving so Uncle prepared non-alcohol beer for me.

My first time to try Suntory All-Free and surprisingly, it’s nice and rich in hop.


We chatted for four hours non-stop.

Uncle showed off his collection of mint and coins.

I didn’t know that he is a collector!!

These are few of his collection.


To show his appreciation, he gave me the Silver Coin for the 60th Anniversary of Enforcement of the Local Autonomy Law.

There are 47 coins for 47 prefectures: of course, he has all 47 coins for 47 prefectures.

He has two sets for Tokyo Prefecture to give me one.



It’s so beautiful and comes together with memorial stamps.


He has nine coins for memorial of nine Shinkansen in set.


He gave me loose ones; it’s equally nice as a set.


He also gave me loose coins for Japan 47 Prefectures Coin Programme for Tokyo and Chiba prefecture version.


Thank you; I’ll keep them nicely.

After spending wonderful time with Uncle and Aunty, we had Italian dinner with Dad near from home.

We reported all to him and showed my new collection of coins. hahaha

Posted in Art, Family, Feelings, Food, Japan Technology, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Tokyo

Quality Time with Uncle & Aunty

The other day I gave a lift to my uncle.

It was nothing because going by two (Mom and I) or three (Uncle, Mom and I) are the same.

However, he want to show his appreciation by inviting us (Mom and I) to his apartment.


It was nice of them to prepare high-tea for us.


I was driving so Uncle prepared non-alcohol beer for me.

My first time to try Suntory All-Free and surprisingly, it’s nice and rich in hop.


We chatted for four hours non-stop.

Uncle showed off his collection of mint and coins.

I didn’t know that he is a collector!!

These are few of his collection.


To show his appreciation, he gave me the Silver Coin for the 60th Anniversary of Enforcement of the Local Autonomy Law.

There are 47 coins for 47 prefectures: of course, he has all 47 coins for 47 prefectures.

He has two sets for Tokyo Prefecture to give me one.



It’s so beautiful and comes together with memorial stamps.


He has nine coins for memorial of nine Shinkansen in set.


He gave me loose ones; it’s equally nice as a set.


He also gave me loose coins for Japan 47 Prefectures Coin Programme for Tokyo and Chiba prefecture version.


Thank you; I’ll keep them nicely.

After spending wonderful time with Uncle and Aunty, we had Italian dinner with Dad near from home.

We reported all to him and showed my new collection of coins. hahaha

Posted in Art, Family, Feelings, Food, Japan Technology, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Tokyo

Quality Time with Uncle & Aunty

The other day I gave a lift to my uncle.

It was nothing because going by two (Mom and I) or three (Uncle, Mom and I) are the same.

However, he want to show his appreciation by inviting us (Mom and I) to his apartment.


It was nice of them to prepare high-tea for us.


I was driving so Uncle prepared non-alcohol beer for me.

My first time to try Suntory All-Free and surprisingly, it’s nice and rich in hop.


We chatted for four hours non-stop.

Uncle showed off his collection of mint and coins.

I didn’t know that he is a collector!!

These are few of his collection.


To show his appreciation, he gave me the Silver Coin for the 60th Anniversary of Enforcement of the Local Autonomy Law.

There are 47 coins for 47 prefectures: of course, he has all 47 coins for 47 prefectures.

He has two sets for Tokyo Prefecture to give me one.



It’s so beautiful and comes together with memorial stamps.


He has nine coins for memorial of nine Shinkansen in set.


He gave me loose ones; it’s equally nice as a set.


He also gave me loose coins for Japan 47 Prefectures Coin Programme for Tokyo and Chiba prefecture version.


Thank you; I’ll keep them nicely.

After spending wonderful time with Uncle and Aunty, we had Italian dinner with Dad near from home.

We reported all to him and showed my new collection of coins. hahaha