Monday, January 30, 2017

Life, Lately: Of Firsts and Little Victories

As promised, here's the second half of January's Life Lately! *hurrah*

What was I up to? Not much.  Butttttt... I can say that the last days of January unfolded in such an interesting fashion. I was expecting it to be a little dull, ma-ma, as how they say it in Japanese. But lo and behold, it was way better than what I had in mind. Firsts are almost always exciting (at least for me) and I had a lot of firsts as January's final curtain falls.

Couldn't think of a better way to start this update other than food so yeah...

Got to cross out Bills Futako-tamagawa and On the Corner/ No.8 Bear Pond in the long list of restaurants and cafes that I want to visit in Tokyo.

First dined at a Bills branch when my beau Kenji and I toured Enoshima-Kamakura last year. It's just through an Instagram post that I learned that it has a branch in Futako-tamagawa, a 10-minute train ride from my workplace! Thinking of their ricotta pancakes alone makes me drool that's why I'm thankful that my workmate Rie agreed to celebrate her birthday there with me~ A little pricey but the place makes up for it! Soooo classy and quiet! Go there if you wanna catch up with friends without shouting and if candle-lit dinners are your thing! *wink*

I've learned about On the Corner via Google. Yes, I am in a continuous search for good places to eat at so my list won't be exhausted that easily. Since my beau and I kinda missed burgers, we decided to go to OTC for some Friday night junk fix but ordered differently when we arrived haha! I opted for buffalo rice (which was a total treat for my taste buds) and Oreo shake (so-so). My beau ordered chili con carne rice (normal, nothing special) and choco mint shake (which he said was goooood). Ordered nachos, too. I loved the ambiance and the jam! Couldn't help but groove~

Also went to Cafe & Meal MUJI with the beau on a weekday and it was what I needed to recharge my worn-out self! This was actually my second time; the first was when I had my English conversation lesson here. On my first visit, I only tried their coffee and cakes, so this next visit, my beau and I made it a point to try their meal sets. I love their wide food selection and the design-your-own-meal part! I got two cold and two hot meal servings plus rice for 1000 JPY + tax! What a steal! And yeah, the place has nice chandeliers, too!

On the other side of the coin, sadly, I need to work so that I can continue on with my food journey~ Work is still work, always busy, same old. But I am just glad that on top of it, I got around to finishing my Jolly Phonics modules and assignments, which means...
*drumroll * completion certificate *confetti * 

A small thing for some but it's quite something for me... geez, the last days of January were spent cramming on papers and panicking real hard haha! Even then and until now, I've got  high respect and admiration for all working students out there! It isn't easypeasy and never was but please know that I'm rooting for you all! 
Ganbatte! ٩(๑❛ᴗ❛๑)۶ 

And oh, special thanks to Continuing Professional Development College, Ireland and to my boss for granting me the certificate and the scholarship, respectively.

Random Shinjuku exploration on a Sunday~

Last but definitely not the least, Think Back Tokyo: Sunset Bay Night tour! My orgmate and friend Lance tapped me for this and since it's free in exchange of my whole afternoon and a simple evaluation of some sort, so I went and dragged my beau, too! It was one of the best decisions I've made in my life (at least from the ones I could still remember)! I experienced a lot of firsts in a span of seven hours~

✱ First food tour in Japan that I joined and first water bus ride~

First time at Hama Rikyu Gardens and first  Plum Blossom sighting for this year!

First bicycle trip 'round the metro and an e-bike at that! The e-bike from Docomo was really comfy and convenient that I wanted to have one if not only for its not-really-cheap-not-at-all cost. However, I'm glad I get to ride one and even chanced upon the sun as it sets in Toyosu while at it. Ahhhh sunsets, always and forever in Alyssa's (long list of) favorites~ ♡

I hope I can make a more detailed write-up on this tour some time soon.

So yeah, that pretty much sums up the last days of the first month of this year. I think it was a great month, experience-wise. I'm on the move on trying to appreciate bits and pieces of my daily existence more, no matter how minute those are. Here's to being more positive and appreciative in the days to come ~

How about you? How did your January go? Any plans? Resolutions?
I would love to hear from you! Comments are welcome! ♡

Monday, January 23, 2017

Life, Lately: I'm Still Alive


I know I haven't been updating this memory compendium lately. If updating this is my life job, I'd instantly get fired. But as much as I want to write here more often, work and life in general have been giving me daily headaches and an awful roller coaster ride of emotions that I am left feeling semi-crippled, figuratively. Too many things to do, so little time - what a cliché.

I've been trying to find some time to share my past travels and whatnot with you all, for almost half of my travels for the past year are currently rotting in the darkest and deepest chambers of my equally rotten laptop. Got lots of stories to share but at this point I've forgotten most of them. I could use some memory gap meds, really haha. 

Buttttt, I'm writing now aboard the train back home just to let you guys know that I made it to 2017! I'm still alive! Hurrah!

To address me being a lazy blogger, here's a first for this year - a life update and something to make me feel less guilty of not putting this portal into its proper use!

Bear with me, yes? ʕ•ᴥ•ʔ

Spent the eve and the first few hours of 2017 in Kyoto Station! 
A different post on my Kansai trip, soon!

First date with the beau and well, first purikura of the year! *wink*

Long weekend in Niigata - heaven! Stayed for three days and had a blast chilling - literally chilling 'cos of the -°C. It didn't come as a surprise that I did have a blast just chilling around because the past year was hectic. Those Niigata days were probably the most chill I've ever been since life "pushed" me to be a "proper" adult! And hey, this is the most number of "chill" I've written in a paragraph haha!

Impulsive hair chop! *_*

Round 1 Spo-cha with friends - that day when six hours of playtime weren't enough!
We tried almost all of the games and even played basketball and badminton (located at the building's rooftop) in 1°C with only our sweaters on! Had to literally run around and move for some body heat haha!

And last but not the least, LSS for an old Japanese song I could barely sing better yet understand! This song made me drag my beau to a karaoke place just for me to try and practice singing it for hours! Guess what? Still couldn't sing it but on a lighter note, that was a good practice for reading Japanese! *wink*

So yeah, these and work kept me busy during the first half of January! Can't wait for the days to unfold and surprise me (in a good way, I hope)!

How did the first days of 2017 go for you? Good, I hope!
 Let's do our best on the coming days, yes? ♥

P.S. This is also the first entry for my Life, Lately series, which I plan to write once or twice a month. I hope I could pull off this little project of mine! Wish me luck!