Wednesday, 20 November 2019 // 6:48 am
Another year, another birthday!
The celebrations actually started really early - on the 5th, actually!
Then it snowballed into the weekend.
5th. had a lovely dinner with noel -
a joint birthday celebration of sorts! his birthday is just a few days before mine :)
9th. high tea (my new favourite thing) at anti:dote with CF! went for their special SK-II high tea promotion - the little SK-II signs are mini macarons! CF was skeptical that this would fill our tummies but damn it did... to the brim.
10th. teacrafting workshop courtesy of @theteacrafters!!! this class was informational, casual, and so therapeutic - had a teariffic time crafting my own tea blend!
more tea-ventures follow... yuzu matcha, their special autumn tea, honey earl grey cake (all fantastic) @ an tea social
me welcoming everyone to the cafe.
11th. was playing boardgames with the family -
clock struck midnight and they surprised me with cake (๑˃̵ᴗ˂̵)
(i cut a piece from all the slices so i could sample em, hence the scraps, heh)
first omakase experience! it sure is something else to watch a chef so in love with his craft make the food in front of you, dancing his hands around to the melody of rice and vinegar, making sushi like he's creating a piece of art. which it certainly tasted like!
everything i had at ryo sushi was a masterpiece on it's own - especially to that unassuming seaweed broth. i thought "boy clear soup? this gonna taste bland" MAN was I wrong! it was chockful of umami goodness and flavour. i'm dead. i would go back just for the soup.
popped by the disney: magic of animation at MBS! verdict: go if you're interested in the process - pretty worth, especially since i have a soft spot for disney/pixar animation. it was cool seeing some of the concept art too!
dinner @wildseedcafe with the family - the food was megagigatimax delicious! had the tom yum pasta (spicy so so spicy) and some pizza. i highly encourage ya'll to get the truffle brie and roast pork!
I don't know how I can express my gratitude into words. My heart is fit to burst - many acts were unexpected, and many gifts as well. Thank you, to each and everyone of you who took time out of your routine to get/make me a gift, wished me a happy birthday, or made the effort to give a damn. I am truly, truly, lucky!
This year I came into a new philosophy - I used to be so afraid of growing older, afraid of the ticking clock and how little time I had. The constant pressure I had myself kept growing - I should be at this point of my life now, I should have this, I should have accomplished this, etc.
I don't know when it was - definitely some time this year - but I just realized that hey, there's no point in me being so hard on myself. It was giving me a lot of anxiety to do things. So instead of being a critique to myself, I started to become my own cheerleader too. Each year is another year to experience more, eat more, do more? Maybe I'm just tired of being so afraid... so instead of living in fear, I think I'll start to live with curiosity and contentment.
I'm not gonna kid myself, I still feel a little bit of fear. But I think this is a good start - day by day, moment by moment.
On to my new year! :)
Thursday, 7 November 2019 // 5:45 am
Back at it again, second time this year. Man, at this rate, posting here will be an annual thing. I hope that won't be true!
I'm feeling quite nostalgic about my Okinawa trip (it was just 3 weeks ago......................) and I felt compelled to share some photos and anecdotes about my trip. What better way then to use this digital space I have! I've also exercised this urge by creating a public instagram account (@jopostrophe
), just for nice photos in my photo album that has been collecting virtual dust.
follow if you like seeing random photos, food, or cheer/aerial stuff!
This Okinawa trip marks my first ever road trip in Japan!
Driving in Japan was… different. Actually, I’ve never actually driven 'proper' in Singapore – parents always on my back about my lack of vehicular skills, and refusing to let me drive a car without them in the passenger seat. But boy, Japan was my chance. I had a navigator beside me (I would have panicked so hard without you), so it didn’t go as badly as I thought it might.
It was SO. MUCH. FUN.
A big plus on why it was fun – people are way nicer on the road there LEL. Not once did I get honked at even though I knew I fully deserved it. Meanwhile, in my own country, I got honked at for going too slow by a taxi uncle when I was learning. L PLATE, OKAY, UNCLE?
Okay road rant over – back to the trip.
From here on out it’ll mostly be photos and a few quips from me here and there. Our itinerary was a little bonkers tho, as with all trips I plan.
sweet potato whole-grain pancakes with mango and coconut syrup | @rakuen cafe
shuri castle (we visited a week or so before the fire... :( )
the best chanpuru i had in okinawa + melt-in-mouth garlic steak @ masara
zakimi castle ruins
got rejected by this establishment -reservation only- :( but all was well, because we dined at a gem of a restaurant recommended by our guesthouse host... hanahou
the best rafute
rabbitfish on tofu
umi budo / seagrapes - so fresh and yum!
whilst parking, one of the members of staff rushed out to help and greet us. they also helped us reverse out of the parking lot when we were done, getting the keys from another patron (whose car was blocking us) and making way for us T-T +++points for waiting for my slow ass to reverse out. 10000/10 customer service! @hanahou
blue cave soba with a shisa @ cape maeda's cafe
diving with @natural blue! unfortunately the tide was too high that day and we were unable to visit the blue caves :( but the entire experience was still pretty cool (but exhausting - snorkelling + diving consecutively ain't a joke, kids)
uv rays are bad
a quaint, unassuming chinsuko shop/mini factory we passed by and had to stop before we zoomed to nago | nagahama seika
nago pineapple park! cute. bigger than expected. delicious pineapple softserve.
fruitsland. not sure i felt about this one. give it a miss if you have no interests in fruit/birds.
peanut tofu! yum.
fried chicken + literal egg mayo
i'm obsessed with chanpuru.
sea lettuce tempura(? i forgot what i ordered) + pink salt
came upon this very tourist-filled place at the foot of a hotel near our guesthouse - food was pretty good, but they had a waitlist. probably because this was one of the only restaurants around, aside from mini foodcourts. @uminchu ryori kaihomaru
jinbe @ churaumi aquarium!!! so huugGGggeeegeeee!
view from atop the tropical dream center. visit if you like flowers.
okinawa sun |colourful, happy little drink shop near churaumi aquarium.
pardon my out of focus photo.
oshokujidokoro bunchan | hungry us, one of the few restaurants on kouri island, generous portions and cute, kitschy decor.
sendan | the accommodation and hospitality received here was top notch. they really set the bar for guesthouses for me! plus, the food was well prepared by the husband. his eggplant dish and sushi roll changed me. super near the aquarium too! 10000% recommended if you're looking to stay around the area.
hiji waterfall - an hour trek to see it.
rocks at daisekirinzan.
interesting trek with many rocks. some formations were pretty cool, other were... interesting.
hiro's coffee farm | we met the owner's daughter! we had a nice group chat together with another patron (me attempting to vomit out whatever conversational japanese i knew). the coffee jelly was sooooo yummy.
on to higashi, to a small secluded town by taira bay. stayed for a night @ azuma no ozu | ran by an old man who enjoys fishing and cooking. had a funny conversation with him over dinner. thought he was a solo-yolo man living his life but turns out he's sorta doing LDR with his wife back in tokyo.
fresh sashimi he caught!
peperon rice, his own creation. one of the best fried rices i've had - probably because this is soooooo peppery.
complimentary fruits - 'service', he told us, heh.
made our own earrings! passed by this pretty shop and had to stop. | @kanoa.okinawa
back in naha city!
first stop: we dyed cheesy souvenir shirts using coral fossils | @shuri ryusen
makishi public market - a very touristy place.
we went up to the second floor and noped outta there.
starbucks halloween ed. vs goya (bittergourd) juice. +1 to the former.
fish musubi aasjhdgaj so yummm! there was a line when we went in the morning. | @porktamago
i did not fare well in this bird-filled mini zoo. can't find anything online, but it's along the shopping street!
creamy and sweet at the bottom, jello and fresh above! can't find anything online, but this was along heiwadori shopping alley if i'm not mistaken.
I don't have any decent photos of blue seal ice cream, okinawa's home brand, but we had a copious amounts of their ice-cream during this trip, heh.
This trip was definitely one of the most memorable ones for me! Japan is almost always a good travel destination :) However, the start of this trip was super rocky... largely thanks to Typhoon Hagibis that happened the day before I was supposed to fly from Bangkok.
I was in Thailand for Cheerforce Cheerleading Championships (which I will save for another post), and right after the competition I bound for a flight to Tokyo the same night - so I could make it for my friend's wedding (still a little bummed, but I'm glad she had a good one ♥). But because of the typhoon, my flight was cancelled and I was essentially stuck in Bangkok.
It was a very devastating few hours for me because I couldn't find a flight to Tokyo - and there were so many unknowns in the air. Eventually, I paid a hefty sum to Okinawa (part of my planned trip), since that region was completely unaffected by the typhoon.
Yea, it was quite a journey... but oh wells, things did pan out in the end! The islands of Okinawa will be the next target, whenever I go back - island-hopping, woooo!
Gotta prepare my motion-sickness pills.
People call me crazy, but i'm really not. My reality is just different from theirs. :D
I love the smell of books. Bookstores are my little slice of heaven. Bibliophile much? I think so. c:
One of my greatest pet peeves is people who don't leave a space after punctuations.
I adore handwritten letters, metaphors, musicals, making lists, tea, quotes, felines, croissants and sand. ♥
Favourite past time? Creating stories and random crap in my head.
I can't get enough of music. It's the universal language.
Travelling is one of my greatest passions in life besides writing and photography. There's just so much of the world to see.
I play video games. Quite a lot of them too. Yes, I am pretty geeky.
I believe that everyone single person has their own story to tell.
oh, and you can call me Jojo.
...or my online aliases; Chesabell/Roaringkitten/Fluffytigress.