Archive | May, 2012

Kawaii goods for summer

31 May

It’s already very warm here in Japan but the difference between summer is that the humidity is still low. I wish this weather lasts entire summer but unfortunately summer in Japan is quite uncomfortable with too much humidity (around 70%) besides high temperature (around 30-35C). Moreover we will have to save electricity because all the nuclear plants in Japan have been suspended because many of us are against nuclear energy since Fukushima nuclear crisis last year.

Anyhow, under such circumstances, it’s nice to see kawaii gadgets that help us feel cooler in summer. 🙂

These are kawaii refrigerants. I don’t welcome summer as long as I live in Tokyo. ^ ^;; I think it’s only Hokkaido that I can spend summer time comfortably in Japan. It has become the season that I dislike most among 3 other seasons. I like autumn, spring and then winter but not summer, unless it’s less humid.

Fan pen…a pen with a small fan. ^ ^;;

Icecream shaped fan…for cuteness. ^ ^;; I didn’t check if it was a container or it had some function other than a fan.

Eye pillows for cooling down. They are not the items designed for babies, but for adults, just in case you are not familiar with kawaii. ^ ^;; Why such cuteness for adults? You may wonder. When we are tired from work or stressed out at work, such kawaii designs are healing, besides what they can do to us, in terms of function. If we seek for function only, they don’t have to be designed like that. Most of the Japanese need healing, because we are mostly stressed out at work or study. ^ ^;; I don’t think kawaii is simply childish, it’s bringing us healing and peace of mind. I’m sure the texture of the fabric is something relaxing, like a soft towel. ^ ^

Cooling scarves. It seems that the fabric is special that helps us feel a bit chilly when it’s watered (and squeezed). It’s logical that we can feel cooler by placing this item around the neck.

I’ve noticed new shopping malls have opened in Shibuya and Harajuku but I have not had a chance to visit them. Some people also asked me if I’ve been to Tokyo Sky tree, but I don’t think I will while majority of people are so excited about it. I wish to stay away from crowds and buzz. Every time I see on TV how people are excited about it, somehow I feel I don’t want to be involved. Yeah, that’s how I am. :p Weird? Maybe.

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12 taboo hand signs that are not taboo in Japan

26 May

I found this interesting T-shirt that shows 10 taboo hand signs that we, the Japanese may like to use without knowing they are taboo in some countries. Of course, Tripadvisor strongly recommends that we should not wear it outside Japan. lol ***information source: Tripadvisor

Let’s see one by one… ^ ^;;
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Kawaii from Australia

23 May

I’d like to share with you kawaii things and stores I found in Australia. 🙂
This is a set of tea towel that I found in K-mart. These towels are so kawaii to me!! I didn’t expect I can find such kawaii towels in a discount store like K-mart.

Speaking of K-mart, and some supermarkets in Australia, I found it’s really cool that they have self check-out service! Unfortunately in Japan, we don’t have such system. I’ve been wondering for many years why we can’t check-out without a person at a cashier. Japan is so advanced in terms of technical devices, then why not? Australia already has this system. We don’t even have an express lane for the people who only want to pay for a few items at a cashier, which is also very inconvenient. 😦 It seems that Japanese supermarkets and discount stores should learn more from those overseas…

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I'm back from Gold Coast, Australia!

20 May

Finally, I’m home! I’m in Japan now and I can blog about what I found in Gold Coast during my holiday after my work. I was staying in Broadbeach. I actually liked it more than Surfers Paradise.

I was staying in Meriton Serviced Apartment Broadbeach at a discount price, thanks to my local friend who found the great deal from a sort of last-minute booking site for me. The room was quite comfortable to stay at, and the service was also great, besides the very convenient location. 🙂
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Sunrise seen from Gold Coast, Australia

13 May

This is the sunrise I can see from the house I was staying at. You can see many buildings, that’s Surfers Paradise. It was taken around 6:30 or slightly before that in the morning. It’s so nice to start up a day with sunrise like this!

My work ended earlier than expected, and so I’m returning to Japan earlier than planned. I have a few days off to explore Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach before I go back to Japan. It’ll be when I settle down in Tokyo that I can finally write more about what I found in Australia. I’m going to be busy exploring the area, shopping souvenirs and chill out at the beach. 🙂

What kind of Japanese cuisine do I miss? I miss Ramen badly~~~~! :p
Cheers,
Kirin

Grocery stores in Japan

10 May

Let me remember how groceries were priced in Japan. Now I’m shopping groceries in Australia, I find some things can be even more expensive than purchased in Japan. For example, I felt the salad bag is too expensive here. 1 bag is about 500yen? Well, maybe the bag is 5 times bigger than the equivalent product in Japan. That’s possible…:p

One thing for sure is the prices certainly went up in general, compared with the time I was travelling around this country during 1999-2000. It’s not too much to say that the prices are almost the same or even expensive than those in Japan. Time has changed…

The following pictures were taken randomly in the local supermarkets near my apartment in Japan.

Bagel…1 bagel costs 119yen (tax included). I really hate that bagels are expensive in Japan. I know I can buy them at COSTCO, but my life is not compatible with it. 😦

Natto…1 natto (with 3 packages) costs 88yen. It’s pretty cheap! 🙂

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My life in Australia

3 May

2 weeks have passed since I left Japan. Over here in Australia I am leading a very simple and healthy life. Due to the characteristics of my work here, I wake up before sunrise (5am) and go to bed before 10pm. Am I bored? No, it may sound boring but on the contrary I’m busy and I definitely need holidays free from work before I return to Japan.

Somehow it took me a long time to be able to write a post to TKE. (The last 4 posts were written beforehand to be scheduled for release automatically. So this is the very first post that I write in Australia.) I don’t even know how to explain this feeling, but let me try. Because the life over here is so much different from the one I had in Tokyo, I am not feeling that I am the same person who was in Japan. Yes, I miss my little Pi-chan and I talk with my hubby over Skype very often, but the life which I had only 2 weeks ago now seems something irrelevant to me. I had my husband and Pi-chan in the small apartment and I had a few good friends there and my social life was such and such…I feel all those things were what happened to my previous life and I can’t even remember it well. That’s why I can’t regain the feeling as Kirin at Tokyo Kawaii, etc.

I have no idea what happened to me. It’s not that I lost memory or somebody spelled me (lol). Before I came here, I was willing to write many interesting posts from Australia, but I just don’t feel like that now any longer. Maybe later, when I have some days off, I can find kawaii goods or interesting things in the city area and I may feel like writing a post.

The environment changed from a crowded area with large population to a lot of space, green, and wild animals. (I saw 3 wild kangaroos in a morning!) The life style changed from late-to-bed and late-to-rise to the other way round. My diet changed from eating 3 big meals to 2 small meals + some fruits, naturally. I always tend to think too much, but over here I don’t. I think I’m more relaxed here. It’s my work style from computer that is the same. That’s the only common practice among all those differences.

I may write a different taste of post for a while. I’m feeling myself a different type of me. In other words, if I were from Australia I wouldn’t write a blog with TKE’s taste. I’m not saying good or bad, it’s just I feel myself different from the Kirin in Tokyo. OK, I sound weird. I know. :p Have you had a similar experience in a foreign country? BTW, I’m not homesick. lol