Monday, February 11, 2008

Gosireh I

It was a much anticipated day ever since I arrived at Tokyo. The 'April Snow & now' circle of sisters led by kiyomi held a special lunch celebration for the Korean New Year. Ever since day one, kiyomi has opened up her arms and heart to welcome an overseas sister. She and cloudnine invite me to their social functions and make sure that I do not miss out on any BYJ events. I seem to be repeating this like a broken record, but I truly am grateful to their generous hearts. On the cold morning of Feb 7, cloudnine offered to take me to Gosireh again. This time I promise I will remember, ok? We took the Namboku Line and got off at Shirokane-takanawa station, turned right at the exit, walked straight for 3 minutes and Gosireh is at the end of a quiet lane.
There, that huge fa├žade of white peony lattice appeared before me again! The famous opening line in Daphne du Maurier’s novel ‘Rebecca’ - “Last night I dreamt I went to Mandalay again” ran through my mind like the timid new bride Mrs. De Winter. Gosireh is indeed a beautiful sight, not only because it is BYJ’s fulfilled dream, but architecturally, it marries both old-world (traditional value) and modern design (new thinking) as harmoniously as its owner.

Immersed in my own daydream and forgetting about the passing time, cloudnine waved at me because we were the last 2 people to arrive! I quickly snapped a picture and dashed into the foyer. The main floor dining room was already packed with sisters laughing, talking and sipping their drinks.

The very kind kiyomi and sweet tamatama greeted us warmly at the reception and brought out a box for us to draw a number for our seats. Next thing I knew from the exhilarated expression of cloudnine and kiyomi that we got the last 2 vacant seats in the VIP room! Still not realizing how lucky I was yet, I thanked all the organizers and lingered on to talk to a few familiar friendly faces, but lunch really had to start.

We clumsily dragged our coats, bags, and almost the boots (you’re supposed to take them off) and practically stumbled into the VIP room. There were 10 other sisters sitting snuggly with 20+ eyes starring at us. I kept bowing, greeting (and apologizing) for interrupting and quickly slide (trust me, it was like sliding when walking briskly on newly waxed floor with socks!) to the empty seats in the center.

Ignorant of my surroundings (as usual), little did I know this is not just any seat. Cloudnine onni told me that this is HRH seat!

The seat that HRH sat on during his private trip to Gosireh last year, it then dawned on me that this room is the reason that antique entrance was built for .....

Remember he walked down these steps?

onto these large stepstones .....

into the VIP entrance of Gosireh.

This is the inside of that VIP entrance.

Cloudnine is so selfless as usual and let me sit in the HRH seat! My face must have turned red as I sensed all the sisters were watching me when I slipped into his seat. Now chinggu, you are going to pound me into a mochi :) Hehe, I was thinking if this seat is a teleporter and transported me back to 2007, I could be sitting on the laps of HRH right now, hahaha!

Before I had time to savor on my daydream, we had to hurry back to the main dining room again as kiyomi has started to speak. She shared that the ‘April Snow & now’ circle is running a fundraising campaign called ‘one coin donation’. So far they have raised 400,000 yen for World Vision, a charity which BYJ supports. The money raised today from our special lunch will be donated to 2 organizations : namely NPO for homeless people and World Vision, 50,000 yen each. I am so delighted to know that as we are savouring on Korean cuisine and enjoying each other’s company, we are also following BYJ’s example in contributing to charitable causes. We held up our glasses and drank to his health!

Next, the food .....


bb said...

and i... savor this post... reading and hanging onto each and every word, afraid to miss something, anything :)

since you (and cloudnine too...) already pre-warned me that i would be quite envious of the entire experience, i think i'm mentally prepared for anything... (except if you were to tell me HRH walked right into your room in the middle of the meal!!!)... think i'm prepared to try and relive your experience from here :)

thanks much much for sharing, and awaiting your next instalment!

p.s. boy, am i glad you've started to blog... it's quite different when you're a blogger, i think, it makes you more alert of the surroundings and also photo opportunities... thanks!

bb said...

and oh, mind if i asked..? how big was the turnout that day huh?

p.s. i remember kiyomi and tamatama! very sweet and elegant ladies! soooo... unlike me, so noisy and uncouth :p

grow up, bb, grow up!

HeippieH said...

Love reading every word of it. You are sitting at HRH's seat? How lucky! And you are dreaming of sitting on his laps! I don't need to say a word, just wait for Chingu to take actions ...

jaime said...

oops sorry, thanks for reminding me, I meant to say this too. Total turnout as cloudnine told me was 72sisters. Thanks for reading!

hehe bb, for someone like me who never wins anything, this is ultra lucky for me - all because I am with the very lucky cloudnine :)

Hahaha, don't worry bb, I am sure you are very elegant next to me. Nobody is as clumsy and silly as me!

love ... jaime

jaime said...

hehe dear h, how come you are still up so late? oops, forgot you are actually morning in boston!

h, how come I still think you are in the same time zone as me?? maybe subconsciously, I still wish we were still in the same continent. I always feel very safe when you are around. Are you at home resting, you're not sick, I hope? take care, ok?

love ... jaime

HeippieH said...

Yes dear, of course you feel safe with me around, 'coz I let Judy do the hair pulling fight with you, haha... I miss you very much, but with your blog, I always know where to turn when I miss you or HRH. Heehee... Hubby is on biz trip again, so I felt having more time ... Today I worked from home and could not help check out your blog during my lunch time. Please encourage my self-discipline when facing HRH as a challenge to concentrate myself on my work. Heehee...

Love and hugs

Anonymous said...

I love when you write this,
I kind of get to see trough your eyes.

I did not know about By and World Vision
I have working with them about 2 years, I don't work for them,
but my job let's me help them out a bit.


judy said...

Hi Chinggu!

First, let me thank the JPN sisters like Cloud 9, tamatama, Kiyomi & the others for welcoming you. Next, thank you H for your support on OUR CAUSE-that is, bringing down the gloating Chinggu from her Heavenly hiatus while inside Gosireh & sitting on the Holy Grail of Baeland, heheehhehehe!

Golly! Chinggu, you are so three-lucky(that's a notch from too lucky) to have cloud 9 allowing you the seat. I should demand a RE-DRAWING of the numbers since I believe that something is very fishy about Chinggu's luck! Next, jow I long to WRING that cute thing you call NECK & trust me, you won't be that pretty anymore! Next, I will make sure that a specific magic spell will be cast into you like turning you into a punching bag for all of us to enjoy practising our IRON CLAD fists into you, heheheheh! Think it's better for you being a mochi instead?

And you imagining sitting on HRH's LAP!!! Make sure that you are not squirming or worse, dancing on his lap! Okay, if this happens, I am sure our dear princess bb will not be reading quietly over this new & higher level of dispute you started. What say you, bb? Want to join me & the others in me & Chinggu's past settling of who gets what part of HRH first via hair-pulling events, mud-wrestling, muai thai, & the race to get near HRH in the earliest time? I admit that we have been doing everything in our power to have HRH's undivided attention but this time, Chinggu is at her WORST gloatable self!!! After seeing Bada's pic of his left paw on HRH's privates, here comes this post, tsk, tsk, tsk....... hahahahhhahahahah!

After all the silly arguments & misunderstandings(which I believe is most endearing quality me & Chinggu withstood through more than 2 years, hoping that it will last til the next millenium), we always end our bickerings with love & affection. Well, to be more specific, a whole lot more of misunderstandings afterwards, hahahahhahaha!

Love all the replies & comments you got & keep this up, I haven't been using much of my boxing skills for some time now, Chinggu! It will be a blast for me to use them on YOU! hehehehhehehehhe!

Love, Judy

bb said...

hahahaha!! did someone mention something about a lap dance?!!! haiyo, judy...!!

and actually i believe jaime is a fine, fine lady, complete with husband and a son... so hehe, i'm sure she would only lap-dance in her mind...

that leaves his lap free for me to wriggle, wiggle on!!! that is, if bada would leave his lap alone!! wakaka!!

judy said...

Hi Chinggu & everyone!

Bless you princess bb for reminding me that Chinggu has a loving hubby & son to control her lap dance & leave it to just her imagination and that makes her safe from my sharpened claws and rusty boxing skills, hehehehehehehh! But wait! I don't think bada will leave his master's lap as easily as you think. I have this thought that we all have to lure the dog with all sorts of sweet talks or bada will surely say "just eat your hearts out!" hahahahahah!

Love to read more of these stuffs from Gosireh, Chinggu & Happy Valentine's Day to you & all of your friends here.

Love, judy

jaime said...

hi moontime,

so your work involves these charity too? how meaningful! It's wonderful to know so many people care about the less fortunate on the other side of the world. Sometimes when you don't see them, you tend to ignore or forget. Isn't it something that our Yong Joon, being so popular and super busy, always remembers to help others?

love ... jaime

jaime said...

OK chinggu, now this 'war' between us has turned from cross-continents to Asia-Pacific, huh? Looks like it's not confined to our little covenette anymore, you have declared 'open fire' out in public and now even dragged in the princess?! You have any idea how much our chance of getting close to HRH is reduced when you introduce single & pretty girls into the picture??

Hehe, I know I can't win you or bb in that lap dance department, how do u do that, btw? But yes, I intend to fully utilize my geographical advantage to get as physically close to HRH as possible. If that means gluing my big fat bum on that chair or washing dishes in Gosireh, I will give anything a try :)

I am still looking for my friend Gozilla in the Tokyo Bay area. So anytime when your extendable iron-clad fist arrives in Japan, I'm all ready!

love ... jaime