Realizations of a First Timer (#WhyILoveJapan)

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  1. I was the only one in my family/in the group I’m traveling with without a single stamp on my passport.IMG_20160830_093827
  2. Traveling makes my heart grow bigger. Always!
  3. Pinoys are much more disciplined when abroad.
  4. I can travel without so much baggage (no pun intended)! It was my first time to do so and it was heaven! IMG_20160829_110614
  5. I have never bowed so much as I have in the past 4 days. I grew accustomed to this practice, together with the phrase “Arigatou Gozai—-” (-it’s too long, I almost always just finish up to Gozai, so my sister would tell me to just say “Doumo” instead) I even bowed to thank the cab driver who had to stop outright, just for us to cross the street.
  6. In relation to #4, Japanese drivers are extremely cautious and give so much priority to pedestrians.
  7. I almost forgot that Japanese elderly people work past retirement age, so it was hard for me to see them working, especially those in customer service and maintenance. I even saw one carefully scouring shoe marks on the floor by hand, in Yodobashi. And yes, you read that right, shoe marks. I guess, this is how it really is in first-world countries? IMG_20160829_075037
  8. There aren’t a lot of Pinoys in Japan, at least not as many as I have expected. My parents were always talking about how there are so many Pinoys working in HK Disneyland, but we never saw one in Tokyo, so it always made me smile when I accidentally heard a couple of Pinoys talk to each other in Filipino in random places in Tokyo.
  9. Japanese trains and subways are not as confusing as I have expected, but it would have been without the help of our handy dandy Metro App.
  10. Japanese trains have seat cushions, not smelly and arrive and leave on time, which led me to ponder upon the money that should have been invested in better transit systems in our country. Also made me think how corrupt and shameless our government officials are. LRM_EXPORT_20160827_132018
  11. It’s so safe to walk around Tokyo even late at night, so we didn’t have a problem collecting (yes collecting talaga!) drinks from vending machines and scouting for a Ramen place. LRM_EXPORT_20160827_224836
  12. Speaking of vending machines, I love them!!!! They’re found literally everywhere in Tokyo, even inside some of the trains!
  13. I can’t explain how much I loved Japanese food even more after the trip. I was always scared of eating raw food other than sashimi, but not anymore! 🙂 LRM_EXPORT_20160828_232617
  14. Tourist spots that are less crowded, quiet and peaceful, more homey and laid back are what I loved the most: a.k.a Meiji Shrine, Nezu Shrine and the surrounding neighborhood (see first photo) and Bunkyo, where we stayed for 3 days! I even loved Yushima station in Bunkyo because of how quiet and less busy it always was, day or night! Ganun siguro talaga pag tumatanda na. Chos!IMG_20160830_123351
  15. It helps to learn some helpful Japanese phrases and I got giddy and nervous everytime I blurted out “Sumimasen” “Arigatou Gozaimasu” and “Gomen Nasai” for fear that I might mispronounce them. I didn’t want them to think I’m trying too hard either, but like one guy said on a forum, tourists would always stand out, no matter how hard they try to fit in, but it makes a good impression that you’re making an effort to learn their language and their customs.
  16. Speaking of customs, they have tons of them, so we made sure we didn’t use our chopsticks the wrong way (who knew there are so many ways you can commit a mistake with just 2 sticks?) and we made sure we followed the rules as much as we could.
  17. I thought I’d never find a Catholic church in Tokyo, but there are lots of them, with some even holding masses in Filipino!
  18. Japanese people in customer service are very polite, very helpful and kind in so many levels.IMG_20160827_105057
  19. I love sleeping on Japanese futons!LRM_EXPORT_20160829_004229
  20. I realized I peed on a Japanese squat toilet the wrong way, or at least at the wrong side twice!
  21. I realized I still love toys after entering Japanese anime and toy stores!
  22. Littlest things such as the catchy songs around Disneyland and the final song during the Nightfall Glow Parade easily made me cry,probably because of the certain feel the parade itself evokes. Apparently, it’s a back up parade for when the weather is bad. Here’s a video I found on Youtube! Still makes me cry. I’d definitely listen to this every night from this day on!
  23. I love kids so much and the hilarious stuff they say! There’s this Fil-Jap kid on our plane back home and he was so cute and square & straight. Everything he said made the whole waiting area laugh. When he came out of the restroom, he was complaining about how their group left him and his dad. He also shamelessly talked about how big his poop was. Hilarious kid. When we were boarding, he was asking his dad to move faster saying, “Papa dalian mo, iiwanan na naman nila tayo!” Imagine a chinky-eyed, rosy-cheeked boy boarding alone and was so frank and outspoken, speaking in straight Filipino. Reminded me so much of Miho‘s (PBB winner) daughter. 🙂

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    that’s the kid behind us and his family at the end of the hall, if you could still see them

  24. I realized I could never get enough of Japan and I would definitely go back. There’s still so much to see in Tokyo alone, and even more outside. I would definitely be back for Osaka and HP world, Nagano and its beautiful mountains, Mt. Fuji and Mt. Takao, the Ryokan town, Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima and a hundred others, the FOOOOOOOOD, make up and skin care, FILMS and more FILM CAMERAS and a whole lot more! Being a first world country in Asia, I easily felt culture shocked, but in time easily got used to it, as long as I’m willing to comply and I should.
  25. Lastly, I realized how truly endless the possibilities are with God. He is the most loving, generous and merciful father and with faith in Him, nothing is impossible. Because He is such a kind God and all His creations were created in His image and likeness, all of us possess goodness inside of us. When they say the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, I guess that also applies to God being our Father and us being His children and so I know that my parents’ generosity not only to us but to those who work for them, came ultimately from God Himself. In turn, they too have imparted God’s generosity to my younger siblings and I and it isn’t quite surprising to see how unconditionally giving they are especially now. It was a miracle that I was able to go on this trip and that miracle wouldn’t have been possible without God and the help of my family, a.k.a., my sponsors. 🙂 For that, I am truly grateful! ARIGATOU GOZAIMASU! IMG_20160830_133040LRM_EXPORT_20160828_055441

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August Break 2016 | day 13

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6 o’clock.

My August Break is pretty messed up at this point. 😛 It’s either I don’t post on time or I don’t post anything at all. Typical me, but I’ll be sure to post 31 photos by the end of the month, a promise I’m making to myself this year.

This is 6am just this morning during a very sudden and heavy downpour. It’s been raining like this for days, about a week, to be exact; although, looking back at my first AB post, I realized it has been intermittently raining since August 1. PAGASA even stated that the rainfall for this week has reached almost half the expected rainfall for the whole effing month. That explains the sudden thigh-deep floodwater along our street. Papa even had to take the car to higher ground, something he and mama have been doing whenever it starts flooding in our area, since Ondoy happened. Thankfully, the water subsided the very same night he took the car out, and was able to come back home safely.

As much as I’ve been enjoying this cuddle/sleeping-with-socks-on/hot chocolate weather, this really can’t go on until the end of the month. **Keeping fingers crossed**

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August Break 2016 | day 9

Okay, I skipped a day because nothing was left of what I was supposed to take a photo of for day 8 – “favorite taste”. It was too late when I realized it. All that was left was the wrapper. At least I know for sure that it was indeed my favorite taste in the world. 😛

Good thing though, this photo challenge isn’t strict with their rules, so I’m thinking of posting something for the said prompt some other time. Like I said, I didn’t want to feel pressured into doing this challenge. It was meant to be fun and so far, it has been fun.

Anyway, today’s prompt is RED and here’s one of my favorite cameras that was refurbished by the previous owner.

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Stranger Things

I came across a very intriguing review of this newest, highly-rated Netflix show yesterday. Apparently, all the other reviews I read after that didn’t disappoint, so here I am, binge-watching the show’s first season on a cold, rainy Tuesday afternoon.

I just finished watching the first episode and boy am I bummed that they only have 8 freaking (no pun intended) episodes for the first season. This is obviously going to be huge, so why the hate?

Kidding aside…

Verdict: I’m totally all for it (mystery/sci-fi/drama, duh?) and wouldn’t mind the jump scares, as long as I’m watching it in broad daylight. After all, it didn’t traumatize me as American Horror Story did, at least not yet.

So far, I’m loving how it’s set in the 80’s, which obviously took us back to an era when teens listened to Toto‘s “Africa” and all the clothes are ruffly again.

I also love the show’s poster which I can’t help but compare to

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the Star Wars movie poster:

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***both posters are linked to their respective sources/owners.

I’ll probably finish the whole season by tonight and would be having withdrawal symptoms by tomorrow, so I hope season 2 comes out very, very soon!

On a lighter note, here’s Senator Chiz doing Heart’s make up, which I find weirdly entertaining and the best out of all the similar boyfriend-does-my-make-up videos online. They’re so cute together and Heart’s skin is incredibly flawless without make up!

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