New Item – Postcard/Tea

Two must-have things for your Japan collection are definitely 

I went to a tea-shop¹ browsing all the different containers* [yes, there are 2kg ones too] when the owner (half promoting – half being nice) told me I’m lucky to have come in May, as they just got hands on the first flush of the year ⇒Sencha being harvested 3 times a year, with May being the first and thus most delicious flush[but also most expensive *whisper*]

I love Genmaicha.  In case you don’t know much about the horrendously wide variation – simply ask them to let you smell [and mostly also have a taste] of certain categories. You’ll be surprised for sure, as the range goes from → ‘did I just swallow dirt?‘ to → ‘now that’s how grass might taste‘  followed by a → ‘oh, we come closer to tea’ and → ‘wow, tastes like green tea with popcorn‘ …

If you’re at it, stop at one of the stationary stores and browse the amazing postcard-collection. They change designs by season, so you’re good to go all around the year.

[Wish Hallmark would have such cute designs for cheap (110yen) in Europe, too.]

¹ 楽山 神楽坂店 (Rakuzan), between Kagurazaka and Iidabashi station
*Containers have various designs, Japanese paper glued onto, with a lid inside to seal the flavor.  Be sure to keep it dry and cool [fridge] after opening a pack. Taste and quality are lost every second exposed to air.


Travel – Hong Kong

The long awaited travel post.
Finally Hong Kong.

I actually was going to plan a nice (way overdue) honeymoon trip [resort, 2 weeks doing absolutely NOTHING] but seemingly a higher power was against my plan ⇒

  • Philippines [dangerous and Boracay closed]
  • Hawaii [earthquake and volcanic activity]
  • Thailand [fully booked or flights to expensive]
  • Indonesia [oil spills in Borneo]
  • ….are you freakin kidding me?!

And that’s how one ends up in Hong Kong. Though –end up– is a bit harsh for this gem regarding food and potential to amaze.

Some keywords here: 
×they freeze you to death with air-conditioning (felt like 18C inside and 36C outside)×NON SWEET food culture (coming from japan where everything contains 90% sugar, Hong Kong is a real blessing!! Everything tastes normal, gonna miss it so much! ) ×Less ‘chinese dirty/loud’ than expected (felt like a Seoul with less of anger and like a Japan with much more “life” inside people)

We all know space in Hong Kong is limited and even hotels are smaller than Japanese standard – we did the full luxury course with a 40m2 room at OZO Wesley – to keep some slight honeymoon-touch, which I was hoping for in the beginning. (If you don’t mind staying in smaller places, HK can be a nice weekend trip in case you live in Japan and got bored of Korea.)

The ‘island‘ has less impact, if you have been to Tokyo or Seoul before, but what it made still jaw-dropping, was its density. You suddenly feel like a tiny ant no matter where you go. Also, compared to theit’s so close to china“-pollution we expected, the air quality was one of the best we experienced since 2 years, plus no rain with beautiful hot sunshine [sweat is not dripping down but drys off asap and only makes you more “sticky” than you might used to be. » Get’s my ‘Love It!‘ stamp – my skin has never been so smooth and clean!!]

It’s a small island, so 2.5 days is enough for a nice overview. We didn’t do much research and browsed the different areas as they came. And yes, you can find some spots that actually let you “breathe” for a while. It would spoil the fun to go into details, so I’ll throw in some keywords for you here ⇒ Hong Kong Park (Zoo) • Harbor view + Harbor (Island side) • Times Square • Causeway Bay Area • Sheung Wang/Soho Area • Kowloon Park • Tsim Sha Tsui …

Food is delicious as well, and even for picky eaters (intestines are a no-go for me too) there are variations of delicious congee (rice stew) and tons of fruits/snacks to explore. [avoid places crowded with tourist or touristy areas, it won’t taste even close as good as the “real deal”   addiction potential ⇒

        • Mui Kee Congee¹, 5min from Mong Kok St. [inside a fish-market on the 4th floor, makes you feel you jumped into one of those old HK fighting movies from the ’80s]
          —  cheap, with a nice view and super delicious

        • 椰汁大王 (Coconuts Drink)², 3min from Ya Mau Tei St. [opposite of starbucks]
          serves fresh coconuts juice mixed with a hint of condensed milk

        • Dim Sum Square³, 3min from Sheung Wang St. [a bustling area, slightly expensive,
          but very delicious food, and a nice stop to gain energy for exploring HK further]


      • Little Bonus for Mango Fans and “smoothy to go” — Hui Lau Shan (Tsim Sha Tsui, A2) – quite pricey but hella delicious.

    If you get yourself a 24h-ticket, you’re as good to go. Don’t forget sunblock/sunbrella and WATER! ( ! Free Shuttle Bus ! to your hotel is provided)

    (don’t worry, looks like fake money but isn’t. Each bank prints their bills in different style.)

    HK Air offers 1am flights from Haneda Airport and there are hotels which offer early check-in (7am) thus you’ll be getting a full day extra.
    We were arriving on a Friday morning and left Sunday late afternoon2.5 days with 2 nights hotel is a pretty nice deal.
    If you won’t let yourself rip-off in touristy areas you can eat and drink cheap [in total, this 2.5 day trip was around 1000 bucks for 2 ‘all inclusive’, and we ate a lot and stayed “luxury” class]

    ¹ Mui Kee Congee, Mong Kok St., Mainland [Exit B3 is closest]
    ²椰汁大王 (Coconuts Drink), Yau Ma Tei St., Mainland [Dundas Street Exit A2]
    ³ Dim Sum Square, Sheung Wang St., HK Island [Exit A2 along Hillier Street]

Travel – Korea 2018


This time for my brother in law’s wedding. So this post is really short, as was our trip (weekend).  If you’ve read my blog about our wedding, then simply exchange groom & bride and location and you got this months wedding. [in Korea weddings are to make money, less about “celebrating” something, which makes them so repetitive in style]

A nice treat – when being in Korea – are the cafes. This time we went big and got these

mouth watering eyecandies

[Cafe Osulloc, Seoul]

Random – early Sakura


This year is crazy right from the start. A freezing cold winter with snow as much as we had 60 years ago. Plus sudden spring, which made sakura bloom before ! April. And April itself seems to believe it is summer (currently 27C° in Tokyo) → I wont complain, because I love heat and summer and sunshine.

Last year Sakura were destroyed by 3 days rain/wind; this year we finally made it and took a walk amidst the -white- (yes most sakura in our area are white) boulevards of cherry trees.

[Tokyo, Asakusa – Sakurabashi]

Travel – Nagoya / Nagashima

This post is a follow up on my Nagoya/Osaka trip. Introducing some 2 great spots we went to while visiting Nagoya. Rain and low temperature made us escape to a great secret spot in Nagoya [which we otherwise would have skipped 100% for sure]Toyota Museum.

Maybe you are like me, expecting cars and robots (which you of course will find) BUT 60% is past history and thus new information (at least to me) – they started with textile machinery ! It’s a very active museum and honestly I did enjoy it way more than the Ghibli one.   Definitely worth its money and time you spend there!!

Another  to-do-list spot was  Illumination.  Around this time of the year Japan doesn’t give a damn about electricity issues/bills and lights up nearly anything.
Nabana no Sato Winter Illumination, which is said to be one of the largest in the whole country, is located a 30min drive from Nagoya near Nagashima Spa. What appears as a nice flower field within a Resort during summer, is lit up with millions of tiny bulbs in winter.
[negative: they charge you 2500 yen entrance which includes 2×500 yen voucher for the souvenir area — it’s not the world, but I hate to be forced to buy something.]



[Nabana no SatoResort/Amusement Park, Mie- Prefecture]