Thursday, December 31, 2020

Thank You 2020

Grateful for...

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

What's in a (Business) Name? Ciento Uno

Books and coffee. Perfect combination.

Spotted along National Highway, Moalboal.

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Friday, December 4, 2020

The Best of Lola Basyang

The Best of Lola Basyang
Severino Reyes

The Best of Lola Basyang includes twelve Filipino fairytales from the creative brain of Severino Reyes—yes, Lola Basyang is a guy! Although one or two of the fairytales have similarities with western ones, this book is still interesting and entertaining. Maybe kids nowadays have no idea who Lola Basyang is. It is time for them to hear (or read) Lola Basyang's stories.

For more book recommendations, please visit Go Read.

Monday, November 30, 2020

What's in a (Business) Name? Ciento

Play Eat a game of cards
Spotted in Mango Square, Cebu City

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

GPSmyCity Giveaway

The GPSmyCity team has gathered thousands of travel articles and city guides written by travelers like you and me and have put all these travel information in one app. With the GPSmyCity app installed on your smartphone, whether iOS or Android, you have the world on the palm of your hand.

The GPSmyCity app can be used offline, therefore, you can read the articles and use the guides without the need to be on roaming or renting a pocket WiFi or data SIM. You can go on a tour at your own pace. By accessing (for a minimal upgrade fee) the GPS-aided map, the places mentioned in the guide will be pinned on the map, tour routes will be displayed, and turn-by-turn directions between places will be provided. No need for paper maps!

I know most of us cannot travel yet because of the pandemic, but with us spending more time at home, now is the time to prepare and research for our future trips. If you have plans to travel to Taipei (Taiwan) or Hakodate (Japan) as soon as it's safe to do so,  you might want to grab this chance for FREE upgrades (to access its GPS-aided map) to these travel articles:
The FREE upgrades are available for a week, from November 30 to December 6, 2020. Please click on the link (or links) that interests you and try it out! (If you haven't already downloaded and installed the GPSmyCity app, it will prompt you to do so.)

Saturday, November 14, 2020

QuaranEats: Pater Boy

Pater is a Maranao dish of rice topped with chicken, beef, or tuna, and eaten with palapa (a very spicy condiment made with scallions, ginger, and chili). The first and only time I ate pater was when I visited Iligan in 2014.  But I never forgot how good it was that I would always be on the look out for it in Cebu. I don't know how long Pater Boy has been serving the Maranao dish, but I only discovered them while hiding from this pesky corona virus.

Clockwise from top: tuna, beef, chicken

Pater Boy's menu is very simple. Just three kinds of pater (chicken, beef, tuna; Php 40 each) and palapa (Php 95 for a 118 ml jar). The pater comes with a serving of palapa. The pater looks small, but my eyes are bigger than my stomach. One serving was actually enough for me. My mouth wanted more, my stomach said stop. (Warning! Eating pater with palapa will make you want to eat more!) I have always been partial to chicken so if you ask me which of the three I prefer, you know the answer.

Pater Boy has three branches: J. Urgello Street, Leon Kilat Street, and in Bacayan (Talamban). You can go to any of these branches or have it delivered—send them a message in their facebook pages: Pater Boy / Pater Boy Talamban. Delivery is through a third-party service, so there is a separate delivery fee. For deliveries, they accept cash on delivery or payment through bank transfer (BDO) or GCash.

Friday, November 6, 2020

QuaranEats: Indonesian Food by MitaBelle

During the community quarantine, I traveled to Indonesia without ever going out of my house. I traveled through my tastebuds!

I found Indonesian food by MitaBelle's New Cuisine through a facebook group. On the menu are three kinds of boxed meals, two types of desserts (the other, not mentioned in the photo below since it is a new offering, is Nastar, which are pineapple tarts—Php 100 for 20 pieces), and party trays.

We tried the boxed meals and desserts. Each of the boxed meals included yellow rice, mie goreng, and vegetables. The shrimp and tofu boxed meal came with a potato fritter, while the beef and chicken came with sambal (chili sauce). Of the three, I liked the shrimp and tofu best! I also liked the sambal and mie goreng. My brother deems these boxed meals worthy of its price! For dessert, we tried the nastar and dadar gulung. Nastar are delectable one-inch pineapple tart balls. I could eat the pack of 20 pieces in one sitting! Dadar gulung are pandan crepe with sweet coconut inside. The sweet coconut stuffing is just like our bukayo.

Top, left to right: Nasi Kotak Shrimp and Tofu, Nasi Kotak Chicken
Bottom, left to right: Nastar, Nasi Kotak Beef, Dadar Gulung

If you're craving for Indonesian food, contact Mita Fatmarasi through facebook messenger. One day advance notice is required for orders. The orders can be picked up near Sunny Hills/Gaisano Grandmall in Talamban, or you can have it delivered through Maxim or Grab (Mita will arrange the delivery). Mita accepts payments through BPI or cash on delivery. Happy travels (through tastebuds)!

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Escape From Camp 14

Escape From Camp 14
Blaine Harden

Escape from Camp 14 is about Shin Dong-Hyuk's life in North Korea's labor camp and how he managed to escape. I have read three books about life in North Korea, but this was the first time I had known of North Korea's gulag or forced labor camps.

Reading about what Shin Dong-Hyuk has had to endure and how people in the camp, guards and prisoners alike, behave felt like a nightmare.

It is disconcerting that such a place exists in this world, but it is something we should all be aware of.

For more book recommendations, please visit Go Read.

Friday, October 30, 2020

What's in a (Business) Name? Noventa y nueve

If Pampanga has Razon's, Cebu has this.
Spotted along ML Quezon Avenue, Casuntingan, Mandaue City

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Friday, October 9, 2020

QuaranEats: Lucas Homemade Ice Cream

My mother, who is very picky with her food, approves of Lucas Homemade Ice Cream. She especially loves the Dutch with Cashew. I liked both Dutch with Cashew and Blueberry Yogurt. It's so good, it's bad—very bad for our blood sugar! Hahaha!! 

Dutch with Cashew (left) and Blueberry Yogurt (right)

This very smooth and creamy ice cream is made with love in a Talisay home. People with a sweet tooth from the north (Mandaue, Lapu-lapu, etc) will definitely think the delivery fee might cost more than the ice cream. But, no need to worry about the delivery fee, it can be delivered from Cebu IT Park!

Ordering was very easy: I just sent a message on facebook, paid online (through BPI or GCash), and my tubs of Dutch with Cashew and Blueberry Yogurt Lucas Homemade Ice Cream were delivered to my doorstep the very next day (I paid the delivery fee in cash since it was delivered by a third-party).

There are almost a dozen flavors to choose from. Now which flavors should I try next?

Saturday, October 3, 2020

The Ways of the Samurai

The Ways of the Samurai
Carol Gaskin & Vince Hawkins

The samurai existed from the 12th century until the 19th century. That's a very long time! But, how then is this book, The Ways of the Samurai, just a little over 140 pages long (or short)? The Ways of the Samurai gives the reader just enough information about the samurai in easily understood language to whet the appetite. It does not overwhelm the reader with confusing names and terms, and complicated facts and events.

If you're curious about the samurai, then this is a good book to start your journey.

An awesome discovery for me was that one of the stories included in the book, The Fourth Battle of Kawanakajima, has very familiar names. This historic event, which happened in 1561, involves the Takeda Clan, the Sanada Clan, and Kaizu Castle. These are not really well-known to foreigners, unlike the names Nobunaga, Ieyasu, and Hideyoshi (these names are also mentioned in the book), but Takeda and Sanada sounded very familiar to me. It turns out Matsushiro, a place off the international tourist radar I had visited almost three years ago (Yumiko, who I follow in IG and would not meet in person until a year later, recommended this place and all I knew was that it was a samurai town) was the place mentioned (though not in name) in the book: Matsushiro was where I visited the Sanada Residence and the Matsushiro Castle (Kaizu Castle), among others.

For more book recommendations, please visit Go Read.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

Home of the Brave / Inside Out & Back Again

Two books: Home of the Brave by Katherine Applegate and Inside Out & Back Again by Thanhha Lai

Three things in common: 1) The main characters are both refugees. 2) The "chapters" are poems. 3) The books are written for children ages 9 to 12.

The differences: Home of the Brave is about Kek, a refugee from Sudan. Inside Out & Back Again is about Ha, a refugee from Vietnam. Home of the Brave is a work of fiction, while Inside Out & Back Again is based on the author Thanhha Lai's experience.

Why read these children's books? Both books are stories of hope. One can never go wrong with stories of hope no matter one's age.

For more book recommendations, please visit Go Read.

Sunday, August 30, 2020

What's in a (Business) Name? Noventa y siete

One meal to rule them all...
Spotted along Gov. M. Cuenco Ave., Cebu City

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Friday, August 28, 2020

A Lolong Time Ago

A Lolong Time Ago
Michelle Suarez, Joonee Garcia, Divine Gil Reyes, Benjor Catindig

If you follow my Business Names series, you know I love puns. The title of this book, A Lolong Time Ago, was what caught my interest. Second was the cute cartoony cover, from which you could tell the book was for kids.

A Lolong Time Ago is about the prehistory of the Philippines. Duh, it's the subtitle on the cover.

Historical data, such as dates and names, alone could be boring (to me, at least). But these written in a fun, conversational way, coupled with illustrations and photos held my interest all throughout.

Reading A Lolong Time Ago drew a bigger and better picture and a cohesive story of all the bits of history which I had seen in different places at different times, like the Manunggul Jar and the Laguna Copperplate in the Museum of the Filipino People, and the petroglyphs in Binangonan, Rizal! It felt like those historical pieces I had seen through glass cases (or across barriers, in the case of the petroglyphs) were parts of a jigsaw puzzle that I had finally pieced together.

History was my least favorite subject when I was a student. If history textbooks were written the way A Lolong Time Ago was written, then history could have been my favorite subject.

For more book recommendations, please visit Go Read.

Friday, August 7, 2020

QuaranEats: GenRis

Well, well, well. This community quarantine, imposed since the end of March 2020, sure brought out the cooks, bakers, gardeners, crafters, etc. in us. Or at least most of us—not me: I have no talent for cooking, baking, gardening, DIY-ing. I only have a talent for eating. Eating good food. And good food is meant to be shared. If not physically, then the good news of good food.

GenRis's brownies and egg pie

And here's the good news for your sweet tooth: GenRis makes very soft, chocolatey, melts-in-your-mouth brownies (box of 25 for Php 380) and fluffy, not-too-sweet, you-know-they're-not-scrimping-on-eggs egg pies (Php 350). And that's just among other dessert stuff from their menu. (I only tried these two, so these two are the only ones getting the special mention.)

Head on over to GenRis's facebook page to check out what other goodies they have. And to place your order, of course!

This is not a sponsored post. Good food is just worth writing and telling friends about.

Monday, August 3, 2020

Request for Refund of Terminal Fee (Cebu Pacific)

Did you know you can request for refund of the terminal fee for unused tickets for flights that were not cancelled? (They should issue a refund since you did not use the terminal could you when you did not travel!)

To request for a refund, go to the Cebu Pacific Website > Contact Us > Guest Feedback Form.
For the Type of Feedback, select Request. And for the Category, choose Refund of Taxes for Unused Tickets.

I am not sure if there is a timeline to follow to request this refund, but you should probably request for a refund as soon as the trip dates have passed but not more than a year later.

If you used a credit card when you purchased the ticket, the refund will be credited back to your card. There is no fixed number of days for the processing, because it would depend on your credit card's billing cycle. They usually advise that the refund will be credited back within three to four billing cycles. But in my case, my refund request from February was only credited back in July. That's five months of waiting. (It's probably because of covid and all the full ticket refunds they had to issue when travel was prohibited by the Philippine government starting around end of March 2020.)

You're welcome.

Thursday, July 30, 2020

What's in a (Business) Name? Noventa y seis

Imagine all the lemons, living for today...(part 2)
Spotted in BTC, Cebu City.

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Thursday, July 2, 2020

QuaranEats: PANdemic Bakery

A photo of sourdough on my facebook feed. Then a hazy memory of some restaurant forms in my brain, but I can't pinpoint where that restaurant was and what events took place on that day. What I do remember is that I enjoyed that slice of sourdough in that forgotten-restaurant.

The longer I look at the photo on my fb feed, the more I want to eat sourdough. Yes, facebook posts do work as advertising. Especially on hungry people like me who scroll away time on fb.


The post for sourdough for sale was by PANdemic Bakery. A bakeshop with a pun-ny name. Sounds like my kind of bakeshop.

Since they are based in Liloan, I went on a bit of shopping spree to make the most of the delivery fee. I ordered a large sourdough (Php 150), meat rolls (Php 25/piece), emapanadas (Php 20/piece), and ubedesals (Php 15/piece).


Everything was so good! The sourdough was so soft inside that my father and I could not stop eating it. The empanadas and meatrolls so stuffed, and the ubedesals oozing with ube halaya and cheese! This bakeshop does not hold back on their stuffings.

PANdemic Bakery. A bakeshop with a pun-ny name. And delicious baked goodies. My kind of bakeshop indeed.

PS. Photos grabbed from PANdemic Bakery's facebook page. Because I had chomped through my hoard before I remembered to take photos.

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

What's in a (Business) Name? Noventa y cinco

Have a drink 'til the break of dawn.
Spotted by Fred of The Exaggerated Zeal along Katipunan St., Labagon, Cebu City

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Thursday, June 18, 2020

QuaranEats: Cole's Cansi

Thanks to facebook and local fb groups, my family and I discovered some difficult-to-find eats. First find was Yogh!'s Greek yogurt. Next find was Cole's Cansi.

Cansi is a Bacolod dish which is kind of a cross between pochero and sinigang. I always make a point to eat cansi when in Bacolod because I could never find one as good in Cebu. It was only by staying home (community quarantine!) that I found one in Cebu.

Since I could not travel to Bacolod, Cole's brought Bacolod to the dining table. Mmmm...tender beef, sour soup, cholesterol bone marrow goodness! One serving (Php 350) is good for two to three persons. Or one very hungry Mustachio. Just kidding. I shared it with my siblings for lunch, and found out we wanted more! We immediately ordered another one for dinner.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

QuaranEats: Yogh!

Photo grabbed from Yogh!'s facebook page
I love Greek yoghurt. But I don't love that it's difficult to come by in Cebu. And when it does become available in the supermarket, it is too expensive.

When I came across Yogh!'s post on facebook, Cebu City was still on ECQ, and delivery between cities wasn't available. Sad. But, as luck would have it, weeks later (at this time delivery service between cities has resumed), the owner bought something from my sister and gave her a tub of Greek yoghurt for free! (First time I heard of a buyer giving a seller something for free, but I'm not complaining.)

Finally, real Greek yoghurt in Cebu City! Oh, so good! My bad, I didn't have a wide selection of fruits in my fridge. You know, to add to my Greek yoghurt. But, it was just as good plain!

Greek yoghurt:
1kg Php 500
500g Php 300
250g Php 150

Yogh! also offers babaganoush, hummus, labneh, and yoghurt parfaits. Orders can be placed through their facebook page or through their online store. (This is not a sponsored post. I wanted to write about this so I will not forget that there is real Greek yoghurt in Cebu.)

Saturday, May 30, 2020

What's in a (Business) Name? Noventa y cuatro

The overtime everyone would willingly do!
Spotted in St Patrick Square, R Aboitiz St, Cebu City

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Thursday, April 30, 2020

What's in a (Business) Name? Noventa y tres

Wonder what's going on?
Spotted along Basak-Marigondon Road, Lapu-lapu City, Cebu

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Monday, March 30, 2020

What's in a (Business) Name? Noventa y dos

A whopper of a hair badly needs a cut.
Spotted along National Highway, Danao, Cebu

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Tokyo Vice: An American Reporter on the Police Beat in Japan

Tokyo Vice: An American Reporter on the Police Beat in Japan

Jake Adelstein

Tokyo Vice is written by an American journalist who was a reporter for the Yomiuri Shimbun, a Japanese newspaper, for 12 years who was admitted to the Tokyo Metropolitan Police press club. In short, he reported on crimes: extortion, murder, human trafficking, and the yakuza—things I don't often hear about in relation to Japan as Japan has one of the lowest crime rates in the world.

Tokyo Vice was a really interesting read for me, plus the book was not like reading a newspaper report, but a memoir slash true-crime. I recommend this book to anyone interested in anything Japan, and that includes knowing about its dark side.

For more book recommendations, please visit Go Read.

Saturday, February 29, 2020

What's in a (Business) Name? Noventa y uno

This will save your bad hair day.
Spotted in ML Quezon Ave, Cebu City

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Thursday, January 30, 2020

What's in a (Business) Name? Noventa

This shop might be good for your health.
Spotted by Hannah Mercado along Claro M Recto Avenue in Cagayan de Oro City.
Thanks Hannah!

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Friday, January 17, 2020

Escape to Mount Takao

If I had to choose between exploring a bustling city or hiking in nature, I'd pick nature every time. So to escape Tokyo's urban jungle: Mount Takao (Takaosan 高尾山).

Getting to Mount Takao is a cinch. From a Keio Ticket Machine in Shinjuku Station, we bought a Keio Mount Takao Discount Ticket for 1390 yen. The Discount Ticket saved us 370 yen compared to separately buying train tickets (390 per way) and chairlift/cable car tickets (490 one way/950 roundtrip). (If you plan to skip the chairlift/cable car and just hike it all the way to the peak, then you're better off buying train tickets only.)

Keio Mount Takao Discount Ticket

Entrance to Mount Takao

The train ride from Shinjuku to Takaosanguchi Station is about 50 minutes. From Takaosanguchi Station, it's a 3-minute walk to the entrance of Mount Takao, where you have three choices to get to the peak: walk, cable car, chairlift. The latter two options don't take you straight to the peak but will cut the hike by half. Of course we chose the shortest way to the peak. We've been on a few cable cars this trip so between the cable car and the chairlift, it was an easy choice: chairlift!

We arrived at the entrance of Mount Takao around 930am and there were no queues for the cable car nor the chairlift. Although a chairlift can seat two people, my friend and I each had a chairlift to ourself. It was a serene 12-minute ride up the mountain surrounded by trees.

No bars on the lift to keep you in place! Be careful!

From the upper station of the chairlift, it was a short walk to Takaosan Sumika, a building that has a restaurant, snack shops, a souvenir shop, and an observation deck. All the shops were still closed when we arrived (it opens at 10am). But we did stop by on our way down (about four hours later; by this time the lines were really long) to try out the dango (rice balls) with walnut miso sauce (350 yen per stick) and tengu-yaki, a tengu-shaped pastry with black bean filling (150 yen).



View from the observation deck of Takaosan Sumika

On the way to the peak, we walked on paved paths surrounded by trees and passed a clearing with benches and some shops selling food and souvenirs, a monkey park (430 yen), then more trees until we were faced with three trail options: left via Katsura Forest Trail, which goes through a forest; straight ahead via Omotesando Trail, which passes Yakouin Temple; and right via Suspension Bridge Trail, a trail through the woods and a suspension bridge. All three trails have a difficulty rating of two (from a range of one to five).

It was straight ahead for us via the Omotesando Trail, so we could go see Yakouin Temple. The paved path flanked by tall trees and red lamps went on for a few hundred meters  and then split into two: a 108-step stairway on the left, and a gradual incline on the right. We chose the gradual incline for the good of our knees. The stairway and incline merged at an area with snack shops but no temple in sight. It was a few meters more of walking between tall trees until we reached another snack shop (hikers on this trail will never go hungry) and then Yakouin Temple.

Yakouin Temple

A tengu with a long nose (left), and a tengu with a beak (right)

At the temple, there were a number of tengu statues. Tengu are demon-like beings with a long nose who live in sacred mountains. Although they look quite scary, they are believed to favor and protect the good, and reprimand evildoers. Like many Japanese temples, Yakouin also has a shop selling charms, many of which are tengu-shaped.

I noticed there was a line of locals waiting to have a go at turning a stone wheel, and another line waiting to go through a stone circle then bang on metal rings. I wonder what these rituals mean.

This guy was banging on the two metal rings

This guy was turning the stone wheel many times

We went through the maze-like temple grounds, where we climbed stairs and found more temple buildings. It seemed we have left the temple grounds already when we found ourselves on a paved path surrounded by trees.

We chose to go to Mount Takao on a Friday to avoid the weekend crowd. I was surprised to find that there were a lot of people at the peak of Mount Takao! (There were many people on our hike up but I did not expect it to be this crowded.) Is every day a weekend in this country?!

People lining up to have their photo taken at the sign that says "Mount Takao 599m"

Lots of picnickers on a Friday!

At the peak, there were snack shops, a visitor center, and an observation deck (where, on a clear day, the peak of Mt Fuji could be seen). After just a few minutes at the peak, we decided to head back down via Suspension Bridge Trail.

Suspension Bridge Trail meanders through the woods. There were not as many people on this trail as Omotesando Trail and I was glad to be away from the crowds again. This was the escape I was looking for.

This article is now available as a mobile app. Go to GPSmyCity to download the app for GPS-assisted travel directions to the attractions featured in this article.

Sa May Kanto (2019)
Pocket WiFi: Japan Wireless
Keisei Skyliner and Tokyo Subway Tickets
Tokyo Accommodations: Oak Hostel Fuji, Hostel Owl Tokyo Nippori, Centurion Ladies Hostel  Ueno Park
Food for the Eyes and Food for the Mouth at Asakusa
A Day at Ueno Park
Tokyo Sights Using the Toei 1-Day Pass
Teamlab Borderless
Escape to Mount Takao (you're here!)

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Teamlab Borderless

Teamlab Borderless
Odaiba Palette Town 2F, 1-3-8 Aomi, Koto-ku, Tokyo
Daily 10AM to 7PM (up to 9PM on Saturday, Sunday, and Holidays)
Admission fee 3200 yen

We arrived at Teamlab Borderless a few minutes after it had opened and, to our surprise, the line of people waiting to go in (already with tickets) had spilled out on the sidewalk! The 200-meter long line from the entrance was down to zero meters in 30 minutes. Our turn, finally! Since I was the one who had bought our tickets through Klook (although it is the same price as when buying at the venue, it eliminates the hassle of queuing to buy a ticket, which is a different line!), I had to scan the three QR codes at the entrance and held up the line. Good thing the other visitors behind me kept their cool while I fumbled with the QR codes on my phone.

Inside Teamlab Borderless there were no maps, and we had to find your way around the dark hallways, not knowing what surprises awaited us.

The first one we found was the "Borderless World"...a room of flowers...flowing into another room with another with x-ray like bamboo and creepy-looking bunnies, frogs, and other more flowers...

In "Crystal World", a room shimmering from floor to ceiling with crystals, it felt like I was in the animated movie Frozen. We also stumbled into "Memory of Topography", a room full of "lily pads" with projections of flowing blue fish. This one made me feel like a Frog Prince. But not so much—it did not make me want to hop from one lily pad to another, but made me want to run my fingertips over the "lily pads" as I waded between them.

One room that was very popular, thanks to Instagram and social media, was the "Forest of Lamps". We had to wait in line, for I don't know how long, maybe 20 minutes? Half an hour? 40 minutes? Plenty of time to pray for the lamp color to change to the one we want by the time our turn came to spend two minutes inside. Two minutes to try and take an IG-worthy shot without other people in the background (good luck with that). Once inside, we (and everyone else, I am sure) realized how very short two minutes really is.

The "Athletics Forest" and "Future Park", I thought, were designed for the children. There were rooms where kids could climb on "tree branches" and swings, an area full of balloons of all sizes and pretty colors, another spot where kids could make art, and two or three more places where kids could slide down, pretend to cook egg, etc. There was a large space with uneven topography where big droplets were flowing on the columns and gathering in puddles, and where creatures were crawling all over the ground. I discovered that if I stood in a puddle, the water would gather around my feet. And if I stomped on the creatures, they'd go splat!

Stomping on creatures can be exhausting! We wanted to just sit and relax. "En Tea House" provided this much needed rest. But this break cost us a minimum of 500 yen each, because each one had to order at least one item on the menu: green tea (plain, or with yuzu citrus, or with chamomile; 500 yen) or matcha ice cream with a cup of tea (1200 yen).

Our respite at En Tea House turned magical when we were served our tea and ice cream: flowers started to bloom inside the cup of tea and a bush grew around the bowl of matcha ice cream. We tried to sip our tea slowly to make the magic last: the flowers would continue to bloom as long as there was still tea in our cup.

Flowers blooming on my tea

Tea on the left, and matcha ice cream on the right

Nothing lasts forever, and we had to drink our expensive tea to the very last drop and give the others waiting in line a chance to experience this magic. There was one room left—"Floating Nest"—but we decided to forgo that one because the waiting time was an hour! Three hours in the dark with tons of people was enough to make me dizzy.

Sa May Kanto (2019)
Pocket WiFi: Japan Wireless
Keisei Skyliner and Tokyo Subway Tickets
Tokyo Accommodations: Oak Hostel Fuji, Hostel Owl Tokyo Nippori, Centurion Ladies Hostel  Ueno Park
Food for the Eyes and Food for the Mouth at Asakusa
A Day at Ueno Park
Tokyo Sights Using the Toei 1-Day Pass
Teamlab Borderless (you're here!)
Escape to Mount Takao