Takashi Murakami at Mori Art Museum

Takashi Murakami at Mori Art Museum

A Japanese legend in the arts, Takashi Murakami is known to create modern cartoon pop-art with underlying Buddhist references. It has been 14 years since Takashi Murakami has put up a large scale exhibit in Japan, and the contemporary artist did not disappoint.

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Got a free night in Shinjuku?

Got a free night in Shinjuku?

With aching feet and empty bellies, pushing your way past the throng through the extremely busy streets of Shinjuku may seem like a daunting task. A task David and I were willing to go through for the miniscule chance of getting a seat at Zoetrope, the legendary whiskey bar featured in various travel magazines and blogs.

Like most exciting things in Japan, this whiskey bar is stashed away on the third floor of a nondescript building serviced by an old, squeaky elevator. We arrived two hours before opening time and decided to get a bite to eat at the adjacent izakaya, Mifune. Continue reading “Got a free night in Shinjuku?”

Akihabara: Electric Town

Akihabara: Electric Town

Known as the mecca for all things geek and electronic-related, Akihabara boasts of various video game arcades, electronic stores, manga book shops and themed restaurants. While all tourists charge straight into the heart of the city, Kanda Myojin shrine located 15 minutes away from Akihabara station is not something you should miss.

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If you work in the tech industry, you can grab your talisman here! While they have the ordinary luck pouches, the real gem is the sticker you can buy for blessing your electronic devices against bad luck.

Akihabara 2 Continue reading “Akihabara: Electric Town”

Art Fair Philippines 2016

Art Fair Philippines 2016

Warning: Photo-heavy Post

For those who don’t know, I am back in Manila indefinitely! While I am sad to leave Tokyo, I’m in the process of creating something amazing with my best friend. It’s just easier to work on it in Manila. It’s also nearing summer so there are a lot of events to go to. Plus, there were a bunch of new restaurants that popped up while I was away that I need to try. Overall, I feel like moving back home was the best decision for me.

On a whole different story, my friend Tashi visited from Cebu and I finally found someone to go to the Art Fair with! I have been to art fairs in Hong Kong and Singapore but have never gone to the one here so I was extremely excited. Apparently, it started around 2013 and it’s the biggest event for showcasing and selling art in the Philippines. Unfortunately, we did not get to attend any of the lecturers but we did manage to see some beautiful art!

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Continue reading “Art Fair Philippines 2016”

The Little Prince Museum

The Little Prince Museum

I remember reading The Little Prince for a book report in third grade. I did not appreciate the story in the beginning, mostly because I felt like it was trying to tell me life lessons with allegoric interactions between the characters. They were hard concepts to grasp as a kid. As I got older, I finally understood the subtle nuances of the story, from what each of the characters represented to what their conversations actually mean.

When I found out that there was a museum dedicated to Saint-Exupéry and his beloved story, I knew I had to visit. It was easy to find as it’s located next to other popular museums in Hakone. From the bus stop, it’s only a five minute walk to the Little Prince Museum. As soon as I arrived, I was greeted by an ornate European gate with a subtle “Le Petit Prince” flag. Continue reading “The Little Prince Museum”

“No, I’m not fat.”

“No, I’m not fat.”

A few months ago, I stared at myself in the mirror and didn’t like what I saw.

Growing up, my weight has never been a problem. All through high school and college, I was size 2 despite the fact that I stuff my face with junk food and carbs every chance I get. I never really noticed how much weight I was gaining until that moment when I tried on my last summer’s shorts and realized I can’t even get them past my thighs. Suddenly, I felt fat.

I never thought I would have these thoughts… ever. There was this overwhelming insecurity crawling all over me every time I see the little bulge across my tummy or the slight double chin I sported in photos. The feeling of not wanting to be in my own body took over me, and at times, I couldn’t think of anything else. Every time I saw someone else’s slim body, I suddenly wanted to be them. The constant struggle of wanting to eat but also wanting to lose the weight I gained made me depressed. I berated myself every time I had one more piece of chocolate or that extra serving of pasta. The words fat and ugly spiraled into my head like a never-ending tornado tearing away all my confidence and leaving no shred of acceptance of my own self.  Continue reading ““No, I’m not fat.””

Long Live Ziggy!

Long Live Ziggy!

A few minutes ago, I found out that David Bowie passed away. From being the ultimate rock icon, Ziggy Stardust to the menacing yet sexually awakening goblin king, Jareth… He has been a big part of my youth. I remember listening to Rebel Rebel as I got ready to go out to my first club. Or how I laid in bed, earphones in place for Letter to Hermione… because really, that’s the only proper way to listen to that song.

It is with great sadness that I compile my favorite songs now as a tribute to an amazing artist. He will be with us forever. There are rock stars but he is a constellation.

“It’s only forever, not long at all.” Goodbye Ziggy Stardust. Continue reading “Long Live Ziggy!”

Film Roll Stories | vol. 1

Film Roll Stories | vol. 1

David and I sat waiting for the Shinkansen to arrive when I realized that I forgot my camera. Even when David suggested we go back home and get it, I knew it was too late. I literally started bawling my eyes out right on the train tracks, totally inconsolable! Thankfully, my boyfriend is a problem solver. He suggested buying some disposable cameras instead since I didn’t even bring my lomo cam! Talk about being forgetful. It could be a nice challenge for me to photograph without seeing the end result until after developing the film. I was definitely on board with this suggestion and was pleasantly surprised with the result! Continue reading “Film Roll Stories | vol. 1”

Back to Edo

Back to Edo

Warning: Photo Heavy Post

Kawagoe is a small town located in Saitama prefecture. They are famous for their period buildings, candy lane and sweet potatoes! Our day in Kawagoe started with lunch at the famous unagi restaurant, Ogakiku. It’s currently the #1 restaurant in Kawagoe according to Tripadvisor. I thought it was the perfect place for David to try his first unagi dish. The restaurant itself was quiet. Most of their patrons are locals who seem to know the staff by name. I believe we were the only tourists there which was surprising because everyone talks about this restaurant!

The meal offerings were scarce but we did come so that David could try the unagi so it was alright. I’m not a huge fan of eel so I opted to try their teriyaki chicken served with a seafood soup and soboro donburi (ground chicken rice bowl). All I can say is that it was amazing! The chicken was tender and the sauce really comes through. When I saw how big the soboro donburi was, I was hesitant as it was huge! I did manage to finish the bowl so I can’t complain. It was that good! Continue reading “Back to Edo”

The Beatles are finally on Spotify!

The Beatles are finally on Spotify!

After a long wait, The Beatles’ albums are finally available on Spotify! Best Christmas gift ever! To commemorate their wonderful music, this week’s Thursday Tunes is a compilation of my favorite Beatles’ songs. Blast this from your speakers this Christmas and reminisce the good old days where lyrics actually mean something! Continue reading “The Beatles are finally on Spotify!”