Saturday, August 30, 2008

Celebration Gosireh style

Hi Hi .... by now, I guess all of the sisters have sent in their Birthday greetings for Yong Joon. Hope he had a great day with his loved ones and maybe think about us a little and smile? Even though I am not a big fan of birthdays or anniversaries, but how can I ignore a date when such an extraordinary man is born? So, how did you spend your August 29?

Kiyomi and cloudnine are kind enough to invite me to their circle's party. When I walked into Gosireh, there were already groups of fans inside the lobby lining up to have pictures taken by a Gosireh photographer (a Korean, I believe). Why? Because of these 2 super cute & cuddly guys. Hehe, the Damdeok bear even has a ponytail :)

We checked in with the hostess and expected to go upstairs to a private party room, instead the hostess showed us OUT the door! I was scratching my head ...... is my face really that repulsive?? Ahhhh luckily ..... she was actually showing us to this VIP door!

It's hard enough to secure a seat in Gosireh on HRH's birthday, never in my dream that I could dine in the VIP room again! Hehe, Kiyomi san has a lot of face eh (as the Chinese saying goes :)

Since I had the pear juice before, so I decided to try the grape juice instead. Hmmm... not as sweet but still very refreshing. Want to try it next time, princess? As the menu shown, we'd have a special birthday lunch, not the BoyangSang I was expecting.

Our group was invited back to the lobby to be photographed with the 2 giant Joon Bears and we were told this picture will be sent to Yong Joon! Am I hearing it right?? Pleaseeeeee, may I have another hour to get my hair and makeup in place? Of course with these type of group photos, before you even have a chance to find a spot .... CLICK .... next group please! So dear Yong Joon, if you happen to see a blur on the edge of a picture, it's probably this clutz here who was still trying to get herself into a ready position, sorry! The hostess also presented us a greeting card so we could write messages to Yong Joon attaching to our picture, what an unexpected bonus! (No no chinggu, contrary to what you suspect, I did NOT write HRH a super long love letter, just a medium one, haha :)

I know everybody has seen Gosireh cuisine so many times already, but since this is his special birthday menu, allow me to show them again......

The usual banchan

Appetizers, hehe I call them 'Rabbit' dish because of the carrots!

Hmmm, the grilled pork melts in your mouth, slurp slurp!

This shrimp 'salad' thingy is so refreshingly delicious, all the sisters kept saying, "oishii!"

I always love their seafood soup bowl cause I am a 'rice bucket'.

Dessert - well, so so, not a big dessert person.

The wonderful part about Gosireh cuisine is you don't feel stuffed even after eating so many courses. I had to leave some room in my tummy, why? Because we were going to a celebration party next! Oh wait wait, before I left, I got to survey the lobby for any new HRH pictures - hehe, recognize them?

The birthday party was held in that cozy little Italian restaurant near the laneway leading to Gosireh. A lot of sisters were waiting there already, Sakura san and Ok san quickly decorated the place with Yong Joon's posters. Trust me, in less than 10 minutes, the entire place was transformed into a Yonsama-themed restaurant.

We chatted and ate again, Kiyomi spoke to the group. Then we played a real fun Q&A game about Yong Joon's drama and movies on a bingo sheet. Kiyomi, moichan and cloudnine helped me out with my very very basic Japanese. But there was really no losers here. A very generous sister donated so many Yonsama's goodies as prizes, we could choose whatever we liked (I thought I were the 'Alice' in wonderland!)

What comes next was actually very touching, they brought out the beautiful birthday cake and we started singing 'Seniru Chukka Hamunida' and 'Born to be Loved' (Katakana pronunciation).

As I saw the sincere faces and whole-heartedness of these sisters, I then turned and looked up at Yong Joon's picture, I couldn't help but thought, "Yong Joon-na, if only you knew how much your family loves you, maybe even more than themselves. Do you feel a slight tingling in your heart now?"

As I learned, there is always a custom of gift exchange in the fans gathering. We all stood up holding up our little gift and formed a circle. Tamatama san played the piano and we started passing the present around. When the music stopped, the present in our hands will be the one, how cute! Look at the beautiful package I had in my hand :

I was very lucky to get 'Tae Wang' in this beautiful 8x10 frame, isn't he handsome?

The party had come to an end. I am so grateful that I had the chance to share the joy of celebrating Yong Joon's birthday and witness one more time the unconditional love of our sisters towards him.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Otanjoobi Omedeto, Yong Joon!

Oh yeah, it's my birthday today! How old am I now?

This year, I really really don't want to spend the whole day staring at the dog anymore.

I just can't believe a handsome guy like me don't even have a date??

Now I refuse to get up unless someone sends me a wife for present!

Hehe Yong Joon ssi, how do you like this one?

Happy Birthday, my dear Yong Joon! I think we all know what your birthday wish is for the next 3 years! Gambatte, we are cheering for you!

Hehe a year ago, I picked this day to start my blog because it's just so easy to remember. So that also means Yong Joon has stepped into my life for almost 3 years now. Dear Yong Joon, thank you for your gift of hope, beauty and a loving family. You have made a difference between heaven and earth in my life. Pray that you are always safe, healthy and happy :)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Still so handsome

Hi Hi ..... finally can see HRH since those JFK arrival pictures 2 months ago. Oh my poor dear, he's still in that arm cast. Still donning the exact same clothes and acessories, I guess he really likes this look eh? Hair is still long and tied up. Hehe of course, still the handsome-est guy in the world! :)

I suddenly become very jealous of that 'arm cast thingy' and desperately wish I were 'it' - being slung over HRH's shoulder, tied around HRH's waist, wrapped up HRH's arm and hid inside HRH's jacket :) Somebody please wake me up! Or better yet, don't!

posted in byjgallery by makishi and wonchun, thanks!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Just miss him!

Hi Hi ...... so quiet in Baeland, I guess every sister is busy writing her love letter to HRH. Hehe, I think HRH might as well rename that email address to '' instead of '' :)

You see, we arrived here in the middle of winter, but it didn't deter us from buying a set of white wicker furniture for our balcony. We dream of this cozy picture that we can enjoy a cup of morning coffee, chat about our new lives while looking out to the wonderful cityview. Of course, when summer came, the heat is soooo unbearable that all I wanted to do was to lock myself inside.

Today I suddenly had the urge to walk around in my beloved balcony and sat down on my 'new' chair. Tokyo has suddenly turned cool this past weekend and had been raining since. As I felt the coolness and freshness of the drizzle hitting on my face, I looked up to the sky and Yonsama came into my mind. Isn't this the same rainy grey sky we were both under when he visited his Japanese family 2 months ago? How time flies and how life changes! It was a frenzy when he was here and now it is endless longing after he has left. Just miss him so much, and saw this picture posted in soompi by liezle. Gosh, he's just too handsome!

Hehe, this one posted in KOB a while ago is my current wallpaper, can stare at his perfect profile all day @@

2 more days before his Birthday!!!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Bon-Odori 盆踊り

I have been looking forward to attend this Bon-odori for the entire summer simply because I really really wanted to wear a yukata! Afterall, who can resist the beautiful cotton kimono in such spectrum of wonderful colors and springy patterns? You will instantly feel cheerful and youthful once you put it on, no wonder it is referred to as 'happi coat'!

Hehe, this is my very first yukata in my favourite pink cherry blossoms :) Thanks to my Japanese relative who helped me to tie my obi to a bow. How did the obi look, cloudnine? Hubby also wore his 'manly' yukata and he just loved it! We had never wore any costumes in our boring Canadian lives, not even in Halloween. The good thing about Japan is you can pretty much wear anything (well, as long as you cover yourself), nobody really stares or cares.

Bon is a time to honour Japanese ancestors and Odori means dance. Bon-odori is a memorial festival to appreciate what the ancestors have brought upon them. This is the set-up of a Bon dance, pretty impressive, eh?

Some young Taiko drummers started off the event ....

Then all kinds of festival dancers and lion dances too in very elaborate costumes. A pretty big production, I'd say. My Japanese relative told me this event is more for show, 'tailored made for TV Asahi' :)

Even the musicians came in big groups with old Japanese instruments

After dark, performers began dancing to happy folk songs in concentric circle around the Yagura.

Only the children were invited to join in. I was hoping to dance too, guess they didn't want me to ruin the beautiful sight :(

It was a real spectacle to not only witness such wonderful quality production of a major festival event, but also to experience the spirit of Bon-Odori like Japanese people (hehe, that is if I don't open my mouth and start talking :)

I learn that there is a deeper meaning to Bon-Odori : Obon is also a time of self-reflection - the joy one feels is not from the happiness of getting what one desires, but the joy of being shown the truth - the joy of awareness.

Obon reminds people to love and care for their parents. It also encourages the practice of selfless giving (dana) not only to family and friends, but to all beings. Now, I can't help but think about HRH and our dear BYJ family, miss him so much!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Matsuri 祭

Matsuri (祭) means festivals and in Japan, there are always some festivals going on celebrating religions, ancestors or local customs. This weekend we attended one of Tokyo’s most popular matsuri in Azabu Juban (麻布十番納涼まつり).

It is basically like a carnival with food and game stalls lining up the streets and thousands of young people showed up to party. Hehe, I guess the young Japanese don’t just work hard, they play hard too.

Girls in yukata walking to the matsuri

Children playing the Taiko drums in front of a shrine

More street performance - a mix of modern and traditional

Now, are you ready for the parade of Japanese street-style food?

Fish on a stick, anyone? Or squid, octopus or any sea creatures?

The famous and healthy okonomiyaki (vegetables, egg, seafood pancake) from Osaka

Another of my favourite Osaka snack – takoyaki (octopus ball)

Can you believe it? I spotted this! This is deep fried spiral potato, the Korean vendors claimed it’s the latest popular snack in Seoul?? People are using BYJ’s image for everything! Interesting enough, this stall also boasted the longest lineup of purely women :)

Across the street, a toppoki stall. No BYJ pictures, no customers, simple business logic!

Ah, I’m thirsty! No problem, there’re ice cold beer, wine and shaved ice, you can mix your own flavours

Pretty cotton candy

OK, now that tummy is happy. Game time! Very popular ‘Goldfish scooping’ using a paper net! Remember this was featured in the US reality show ‘Amazing Race’?

Hehe sorry, don’t know what this is but love the colours and the kid is enjoying it.

Hohoho, this ojiisan is no HRH but soooooo cute oh!

Next .... Bon-odori