Posted in Art, Beauty, Driving, Feelings, Food, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Music, Nature, Place, Restaurants, Travel

Peaceful Town: Matsuzaka, Nishi-Izu

I immediately line this town.

Crab on the street.

Foot Bath

Old fashion building with Namako Kabe (Sea Cucumber Wall).

Nice dinner at Shinsai Kuon.

Be careful with Wasabi Edamame (Wasabi young Soy Beans). It really hit you.

All others are also nice.

There was an antique cashier that can work today.

There is a traditional post.

And this is my BGM for a night.

It’s not far from Tokyo; It takes 3:30 hrs.

It’s worth coming

Posted in Daily Life, Feelings, Food, Health, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Shop, Shopping, Tokyo

Setsubun was 2 February in 2021

Usually, Setsubun, New Year on Japanese old calendar, is on 3 February.

I learned this year that the Setsubun can be on different day due to the Sun calendar.

The previous Setsubun on 2 February was 124 years ago.

Luckily, I didn’t miss it this year.

We wish for good luck by throwing soy beans to attack bad luck (represented by Oni: demon) and make space for inviting good luck.

AND

We eat an Ehomaki (direct translation is good luck direction roll).

We eat a long sushi while facing this year’s good luck direction (this year, it is South South East) to pray for a good luck.

This tradition is originated in West Japan.

Today, people in Tokyo also practice.

Who doesn’t want to welcome good luck?

There were so many varieties of Ehomaki at the supermarket, Precce Roppongi.

It was difficult for me to chose.

I enjoyed following Japanese tradition at home.

Wishing for good luck: Peace, Health, Love, Happiness and Fun.

Ow I’m greedy.

Posted in Art, Daily Life, Feelings, Flower, Food, Health, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Tokyo, Work

Earlier New Year Celebration Ending

Town was quietly celebrating New Year

Kagami Mochi (Layers of Rounded Rice Cakes)
Kadomatsu (Bamboos at the Entrance)
Close Up of Kadomatsu

Usually we decorate these New Year decorations till 15 January.

However, I saw some were taken away this morning.

Tonight, Japanese government announced the State of Emergency in Tokyo, Kanagawa, Saitama and China effective 8 January – 7 February 2021.

We are in high alert now; perhaps, some building owners were concerned engaging staffs to take away New Year decorations at later date.

COVID has been taking away celebrations from us.

Hopefully we can enjoy Ohanami (Sakura Viewing) this spring.

Japanese government encourages us to stay home and work from home.

Unfortunately, as at 23:30 hrs Japan time, I am yet to hear an announcement from my boss allowing us to work from home tomorrow.

I brought back office laptop and others to prepare for working from home; but I need to bring them back. Hummmm

Posted in Art, Feelings, Food, Friends, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Place, Restaurants, Tokyo

Toranomon Hills, Toranomon, Tokyo

The first Toranomon Hills (Tower) was opened on 11 June 2014.

This is my first visit to Toranomon Hills.

Therefore, this is my first to meet Toranomon.

The second tower, Toranomon Hills Business Tower, was recently opened on 11 June 2020 and there would be additional two Toranomon Hills tower for residential and station by 2022.

I went to Toranomon Yokocho where 26 restaurants are located in a block or one floor.

We hopped restraints to enjoy few dishes.

We had pork skewers at Torishige.

Torishige

There is a distiller for gin: Sake Shokudo Toranomon Joryusho (Liquor Restaurant Toranomon Distiller.

I had Mojito, and

Gifu Lavender Gin

If you want to have varieties of bites; this would be a place.

She is a great guide!

She also took me to one of iconic public arts: 10 m high sculpture “Roots” by Jaume Plensa.

Arigato!

Posted in Experience, Feelings, Food, Japan Technology, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Shopping

Happy 49th Birthday Cup Noodle!

I didn’t know birthday for Cup Noodle is on 18 September 1971.

I should honor and celebrate the birthday together; therefore, I decided to think these are guilty free. hahaha

Nonetheless, I thought I should buy these special birthday package Cup Noodles for a memory and trying Chili Tomato for the first time.

I am traditional for Cup Noodle.

Posted in Cooking, Feelings, Food, Japan Technology, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Place, Travel

Local Instant Noodle: Maneki no Ekisoba (Maneki’s Station Soba Noodle), Himeji – City, Hyogo

Nissin is known as a major player of instant noodle maker and its product, Nissin Cup Noodle, is globally loved.

This Nissin produces locally famous and sold instant noodles.

These two are good examples, Maneki no Ekisoba: Kitsune (Fried Tofu) and Tempura (Tempura Waste – Deep Fried Tempura Batter).

Since after the WWII (year 1949), the noodle shop, Manekino innovated and started serving a noodle dish at the Himeji Station that people can enjoy quickly and deliciously by using Chinese style noodle – ramen and Japanese traditional dashi soup.

As same as other instant noodles, take out soup powder and toppings.

Open and put those back in the bowl.

Add water and wait for four minutes for this.

Tempura
Kitaune

Next time, I should try the actual Maneki no Ekisoba at the Himeji Station.

Posted in Cooking, Daily Life, Feelings, Health, Japanese Food

New Normal: Binge Cooking

Now I bring lunch to work.

I used to go out for lunch to refresh myself but today I eat at my desk to clear my work fast in case Boss allows us to go back earlier than the clock.

I used to buy Take Out Meals from supermarket for dinner; however, during my Stay Home Period, I tried to cook as much as I can to avoid packed food.

Today, I try to continue a good practice.

To ease my weekday tasks, I binge cooking today / on Sunday,

Dumpling – freeze them as emergency food
Beef hamburgs / Beef Patty
Tomato Sauce for spaghetti, pizza, beef hamburgs, etc
Korean Style Zucchini
Dashi (Seaweed and Bonito Stock)

Hopefully these can save me from time and appetite.

Posted in Choco-chan, Family, Feelings, Food, International Culture, Japanese Food, Surprise

The Last Day of Long Weekend

First, I taught UNO to my niece based on rules that I remember.

However, I worried what if I taught her wrongly and she gets confused when she plays the game with friends.

I checked the official rules practices by Japan UNO Association and I changed rules; yes, to my surprise there is Japan UNO Association!

She is only 5 years old and can play with adults by remembering many rules such as same Colour, same Number, Skip, Reverse, +2, +4 and WILD Card and according to the packaging, the game is designed for 7 years old and above!

I am proud of her!

We were so full from lunch the previous day so we skipped dinner and souvenir – Panda Baum (Matcha Baumkuchen or layered cake) .

After playing few games of UNO and having a light breakfast, we opened the box….there is a cute Panda!

The cake is in Panda shape!

We decorated our Panda Baum with Macarons.

It’s cute and delicious!

We all got excited, regardless our age!

It’s fourth day and last day today.

While she was packing, she asked me what date would it be her next visit?

She is asking for DATE!

I told her we should plan again on her school holiday.

I’m glad to know that she enjoyed her stay at my condo and she is looking forward to visiting me again.

On the other hand, Choco looks happier to get attentions and his quietness after guests leaving.

Yes, we finished our roles as host and we shall get some rest.