Saturday, November 29, 2008

You're my everything

Hi Hi sisters ..... pardon me that I have become the 'queen of repost' this past week. Just don't want to miss this piece of 'gift' music specially prepared from our prince to his family for year end 2008. Thanks cloudnine for translating the touching lyrics and bb for posting it.

On BYJ - precious moments


Precious you...Can you hear me?
My love to you, you may not be aware of.
I am always grateful for your smile,
watching and taking care of immature me.
I love every part of you.
Keep this in mind.

Though we are far apart, my mind is always with you.
This love, can’t be expressed with words,
it’s something I treasure.
This beautiful encounter, arranged by the heaven.
Our love will last forever, so please don’t worry.

When I am in pain of parting, your smile heals a weary day of mine.
Tears you shed, times you have suffered, I’ll protect you from now.
This love can’t be expressed with words, it’s something I treasure.
This beautiful encounter, arranged by the heaven.
Our love will last forever, So please don’t worry.

When it’s time to part and it hurts me, my love will never die
I will treasure, I’ll make it to love you forever,
I will promise.
The thing that supports me is the precious memory we have made together.
When I’m in pain,
I can get over (it), so please don’t worry.

The beautiful love, arranged by the heaven,
will last forever...
Precious you...

Please click here for the KOB MV posted by tomato99byj on youtube, it's so heartwarming :)

Friday, November 28, 2008

Slow dance

Hi Hi sisters .... our dear gosijo has sent me this poem written by a terminally-ill teenager. I almost broke down when I read it, do you share the same sentiment?


Have you ever watched kids on a merry-go-round?
Or listened to the rain slapping on the ground?
Ever followed a butterfly's erratic flight?
Or gazed at the sun into the fading night?
You better slow down.
Don't dance so fast.
Time is short.
The music won't last.

Do you run through each day on the fly?
When you ask 'How are you?',
Do you hear the reply?
When the day is done,
Do you lie in your bed
With the next hundred chores
Running through your head?
You'd better slow down.
Don't dance so fast.
Time is short.
The music won't last.

Ever told your child,
'We'll do it tomorrow'?
And in your haste,
Not see his sorrow?
Ever lost touch,
Let a good friendship die.
Cause you never had time
To call and say 'Hi'
You'd better slow down.
Don't dance so fast.
Time is short.
The music won't last.

When you run so fast to get somewhere,
You miss half the fun of getting there.
When you worry and hurry through your day,
It is like an unopened gift .....
Thrown away.
Life is not a race.
Do take it slower
Hear the music
before the song is over.

For the past year, I have been busy trying to absorb new 'everything' and let some of my old friendship slides. As I can't see the disappointment on their faces, too many times I just comfort myself, "oh later, they'll understand". The fact is communication in a relationship is like water to a plant, sooner or later the friendship is going to dry up :(

My dear Yong Joon, how do you do it all? Being so occupied with your many engagements and running a huge business empire, still you manage to be so considerate to all your friends (old & new). What's your secret? N
ow, please don't tell me to hire a secretary, huh?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Charismatic Yong Joon - Manet Series V (Final)

Dear sisters ..... I am so relieved that my computer survives, so I am posting the final chapter of my Manet series with this remarkable painting. Also, a BIG BIG thanks to gosijo for your beautiful translation and comments on Manet's script, love :)

Manet’s last masterpiece ‘Bar at the Folies-Bergere’ was completed in 1882, injecting his eloquent and heartfelt effort to make a grand final statement ......

The setting is depicted in the chic music hall Folies-Bergere, where avante-garde Parisians socialized and danced under its faded red and dirty gold decor. Our visual focus lands on the serveuse (waitress of drinks) and an unrealistically large mirror reflection of the bustling scene of patrons and neglected live entertainment (notice the acrobat’s green socks on top left). The artist caught the serveuse’s weariness, boredom and her impassive gaze oblivious to the world, enduring the unpleasant reality of solicitation from a male customer (on far right). Manet lent our heroine immense facial dignity and an air of aloofness conveying a message of self-containment. He expressed anonymity and loneliness inherent in modern life, not responding to the glitter and glamour of bourgeois society.

An honorary mention is Manet coalesced his love for still life with portrait here creating perfect equality and harmony, can you imagine the visual pleasure of ‘Bar at the Folies-Bergere’ without its sparkling array of bottles and fruit dish?

I initiated this series with a pure admiration for Manet’s charming illustrative letters and desire to share that tranquil love for Yong Joon with my dear Bae sisters. Little did I anticipate it to be a mini-tribute to the artist’s innovative thoughts, elegant style and even his uncompromising life. Manet’s challenge to old clichés prompted him to carve out a new art movement away from centuries-old traditional practice. Like our great king who led the Hallyu Wave into Asia with his charismatic appearance and subtle acting, has carved out a new cultural phenomenon of Asian Wave across world continents. So many tender hearts are awakened with so much dormant emotions erupted, we never seem to have enough sumptuous words, heavenly artworks and melodious music to glorify our Yong Joon’s respectable being and outstanding accomplishment. There was no one like him before, and never will be after! Please allow me to attempt one last time with Manet .......

Thank you for patiently reading the entire series and sharing your valuable thoughts with me. Your comments are so precious to me that I read them over and over again like a beautiful poem. Let’s hope our Yong Joon will be safe, healthy and happy always!

References :

1. Impressionism, Belinda Thomson and Michael Howard, Bison Books Corp. 1988
2. Impressionism Art, Leisure & Parisian Society, Robert L.Herbert, Yale University Press, New Haven & London. 1988
3. Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, James N. Wood, The Art Institute of Chicago. 2000
4. Manet The Still-Life Paintings, George Mauner, The American Federation of Arts. 2000

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Charismatic Yong Joon - Manet Series IV

Hi Hi dear sisters ..... I am having some major computer problem, so I'll try to post before it crashes on me soon, sob sob :( Once again, thanks gosijo for your wonderful translation which gives us a different dimension to appreciate Manet's scripts and our Yong Joon.

In this chapter, I attempt to explore Manet’s still life painting and its relevance to our prince’s favourite passion, the art of photography :

Manet dedicated one-fifth of his drawings, no less than 80 of them, to still life paintings. He believed still life, more than any other genre, tried the painter’s ability to convey the appearance of subject in its purest form. The artist’s mastery of the arrangement of subjects, angle of vision, illumination and precision are of crucial importance. The creativity of still life is two-fold : first expressed in the arrangement of the subjects, second during the course of painting. Manet regarded still life painting as the epitome of an ‘art built upon another art’.

In modern times, this creative process is rediscovered in the art of photography whereby the artist would consider the same four aspects : arrangement, angle, illumination and precision. We heard numerous accounts from renowned photographers and art directors of how Yong Joon can transcend like a dream, a miracle through camera lenses. For us family who appreciates his acute sense of aesthetics and quest for perfection, these compliments are not magnification but a recognition of his metamorphosis. While outwardly appearing relaxed and acting leisurely to complement the impression of each shoot, his work attitude is strictly intense and professional. Our prince would meticulously examine each picture for its precision and aesthetic quality to his high standard. We are blessed with the end-product of that scrutiny as his radiance is beautifully captured under designed illumination and each picture becomes a self-contained perfection.

For Manet, the charm and style of apparel were hardly superficial matters. His notion of dressing was in many layers - implying external appearance, style of behaviour and speech reflected one’s awareness of artistic and literary tendencies, as well as philosophical, social and political concerns. His remarks ‘Il faut etre de son temps’ - meaning ‘it’s necessary to be of its time’, conveyed a tone of his modernism. If Manet were a photographer in present day’s 21st century, he could well be inducted into our prince’s favourite photographers circle, among the likes of Kim Tae Hwan and the late Henri Cartier-Bresson. This set of drawings illustrates Manet’s consciousness of the relationship of inanimate objects to the delights of human life, further substantiated by our prince as a style icon :

et elle déménage. Je suis même étonné de ne pas avoir eu de ses nouvelles. J’ai peur de vous fatiguer de mes lettres. Vous me le disez n’est-ce pas.

(gosijo's translation : and she is moving. In fact, I am surprised I have not received any news from her. I worry you will tire from my letters. You will let me know, won’t you?
gosijo's thoughts : Joonie being very gentlemanly, here, but still a bit tongue-in-cheek smile – How comes that other woman has dared not to send news? And does he really expect his present correspondent will tire of receiving his letter? Is he fishing for a compliment??)

Bellevue Jeudi
___ si vous voulez chère Madame mais jeune ___ celle-là, et qui me permet de passer très agréablement mon temps. Je me porte de mieux en mieux (…)
(gosijo's translation : Thursday
___ if you so wish, dear Lady, but that is simply a young ____, and one that allows me to spend my time very pleasantly. My health is steadily improving (…)
gosijo's thoughts : Aha! It seems this Lady is somewhat older and has mocked our Joonie for doing something only young people do. He looks rather unconcerned and seems to imply that spending his time pleasantly improves his health!)

J’attends Chère Demoiselle une relation _____ par vous – on vous a vu vous promener ____ - avec qui ? ____ feu d’artifice _______ de ___ jardin ____ dit-on dans les journaux. Mettez-moi un peu au courant ____ _____ (…)
(gosijo's translation : I expect, my dear young Lady, a (full) account from you – you were seen strolling ____ - With whom? ____ fireworks ____ _____ garden ____, it says in the newspapers. Fill me in (on the details) ____ _____ (…)
gosijo's thoughts : Joonie is playing at being Hyeong with his words, here, but his devastating looks let us know he has ulterior motives. How dare this young lady stroll with what can only be another man??? ‘Hyeong’ wants to know!!)

14 juillet 1880,
Vive l’armistice, E. Manet
Je ne vous écrirai plus vous ne me répondez jamais
(gosijo's translation :
July 14th, 1880
Happy Armistice Day! E. Manet
I will no longer write as you never answer
gosijo's thoughts : Ooooh, and I always thought this picture showed Joonie feeling a delicious cooling breeze caress his serene features. But no! He is pretending to be supremely unconcerned by his correspondent’s neglect. The note gives no direct clue as to the gender of the intended recipient but Joonie’s look makes that abundantly clear, ahem!!)

References :

1. Impressionism, Belinda Thomson and Michael Howard, Bison Books Corp. 1988
2. Impressionism Art, Leisure & Parisian Society, Robert L.Herbert, Yale University Press, New Haven & London. 1988
3. Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, James N. Wood, The Art Institute of Chicago. 2000
4. Manet The Still-Life Paintings, George Mauner, The American Federation of Arts. 2000

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Charismatic Yong Joon - Manet Series III

Dear Gosijo ...... Thank you so much for caring deeply enough to translate Manet's illustrative scripts for me in part I. I truly appreciate your kindness and have included them with the corresponding paintings. Now I can even picture the settings when Manet was writing these letters :) Continuing Part III, published in Quilt, Auguest 2006 .....

Dear sisters ..... here I am, continuing my journey on Manet with you. In this chapter, I attempt to explore Plato's philosophical influence on Manet and how it relates to our prince's art of acting.

Manet’s greatness is accredited to his truth in life through artistic expression - his innate feelings for his surroundings with sensitivity, his sophistication and thoughtfulness. Through his remarkable eyes and by virtue of the touch of his paint stroke, the subjects in his paintings become alive and vibrant – glowing in the sombre hues of light and dark contrast.

Despite Manet’s radical departure from traditional fine-art academics, one cannot trivialize his influence from Romanticism (Delacroix), Realism (Rembrandt) and Plato’s Cognitive Philosophy. Plato attributed high moral value to the search of truth and viewed imitation as deception. He regarded visual arts as a mimesis, therefore NOT depicting earthly object in its purest form. Under his influence, Manet recognized the essence to coalesce poetry with reality, instilling emotional honesty and truthful spirit into prosaic imagery. It is evident when he reflected Plato’s four stages of human cognition (namely intelligence, thinking, belief, imagination) as four quadrants in the conceptualization of the 'Portrait of Zacharie Astruc' (1866) :

In the 21st century, the definition of visual art has been expanded to include theatre arts and films. Yong Joon is a shining example as DISPROOF to Plato’s centuries old suspicion on visual art. We can witness Yong Joon’s insistence on true-to-reality spirit and sincere attitude into his art of acting during the shooting of the ‘drunken scene’ in April Snow. To recreate realistically the complex emotions of betrayal, crushed self-esteem and helplessness, he voluntarily took in alcohol to immerse himself into a semi-drunken state, thereby portraying the external frustration and internal struggle to its true height. If Plato were alive today, imagine the interesting philosophical exchange Yong Joon would have with him on mimesis over different varieties of tea? I would love to be a referee in that discussion (of course, my support would be entirely one-sided as well)!

While Manet’s water-coloured drawings display such personal charm and seem almost effortless in its presentation, his gentle message to his attractive admirers appears spiritualized and honest in its homage, exuding warmth and sensitivity. In these artworks, I attempt to use Plato’s famous schematic line to define human cognition. With our charismatic Yong Joon, who embodies both intelligence and knowledge, symbolising the immutable form whereas Manet’s floral masterpiece represents physical object perceived by the senses. Happy Birthday, Yong Joon! This one's for you .......


Décidément vous ne nous gâtez pas – ou vous êtes bien occupée ou vous êtes bien méchante(?). Cependant on a pas le courage de vous en vouloir.
(gosijo's translation : To be sure, you do not spoil us – either you are very busy or else you are very unkind. However, we do not have the courage to hold a grudge.
gosijo's thoughts : what do you think of the concordance between images and text? Haha, in the first note, our poor Jonie looks disappointed she's not coming.)

Bellevue Mardi
Chère Mademoiselle, que devenez-vous ? ___ ____ ____ déménagement qui vous empêche de penser à vos amis. A bientôt, n’est-ce pas de vos nouvelles ou ce qui vaudrait mieux votre visite.
Amitiés, E. Manet
(gosijo's translation : Tuesday
My dear Miss, it has been a while. ___ ____ ____ your move that prevents you from thinking about your friends. Soon, if you please, with your news or, what would be even better, your visit.
In friendship, E. Manet
gosijo's thoughts : for the second one, he's laughing at his own boldness for suggesting a visit would be even better than receiving news!)

References :

1. Impressionism, Belinda Thomson and Michael Howard, Bison Books Corp. 1988
2. Impressionism Art, Leisure & Parisian Society, Robert L.Herbert, Yale University Press, New Haven & London. 1988
3. Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, James N. Wood, The Art Institute of Chicago. 2000
4. Manet The Still-Life Paintings, George Mauner, The American Federation of Arts. 2000

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Charismatic Yong Joon - Manet Series II

(First published in Quilt, July 2006)
Dear sisters ........ Hope you enjoyed the first part of the Manet series. So, are you curious to know more about Edouard Manet and his 'roundabout' connection to our Yong Joon?

Edouard Manet was a French Impressionist painter (1832-1883) well respected as the driving force of the Impressionism movement. Among Manet’s admirers were Frederic Bazille, Edgar Degas, Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro and Pierre Auguste Renoir. These avant-garde artists captured their changing world by radically challenging traditional art-historical subjects in a new perspective. Our dear Yong Joon is widely recognized as the leader of the Hallyu wave and well respected by his peers for his integrity in the entertainment business. He created numerous phenomenons and many 'firsts' and is constantly exploring new areas for his personal development. Not content with just the unilateral flow of Korean wave, he strives to widen that horizon to propagate an Asian movement in the world. He lives this idealism not only through his art of acting, but also in his personal and business quest as we watch his recent achievements with Keyeast and Gosireh.

If you’re still wondering what their 'real' connection is (and hope I can get to the point :), remember this famous painting shown at the start of each episode in Yong Joon’s drama "Sunny Place of the Young"?

Now, it rings a bell, right? "Le Dejeuner sur l’herbe" depicts two fully clothed young male scholars and the striking contrast of their female companion’s nudity, casually enjoying their luncheon on the grass. Manet borrowed the figure groupings and pose of water gods from an engraving by Marcantonio Raimondi (after Raphael’s * "The Judgement of Paris") in the arrangement of figures in his own painting.

The prosperous city of Paris in mid 1800s was undergoing booming construction and society transformation. Parisians gained an increased admiration in material splendours and the leisurely 'café society' lifestyle. (It’s interesting to note that the luxury design houses of Cartier, Hermes and Louis Vuitton all flourished around this era as well.) Manet’s reference to the venerable "Judgement of Paris" image was to deliver a 'temperance' theme, admonishing Parisians to lead a more moderate and virtuous life. This painting became the main focus of criticism by the jury at Salon des Refuses when it was first exhibited in 1863.

I reckon that the selection of "Le Dejeuner sur l’herbe" in "Sunny Place of the Young" is an analogy of Park Inbom’s greed and desire for higher social status and lifestyle in the glittering city of Seoul. His returning to the mining town at the end of the drama also reflected his decision towards a more modest and truthful life.

Would the artistic sisters like to share your own interpretation on the symbolism of "Le Dejeuner sur l’herbe" in the drama "Sunny Place of the Young"?

Note : * "The Judgement of Paris" – Paris is the name of prince of Troy in Greek mythology, not to be confused with the city of Paris, France.

References :

1. Manet The Still-Life Paintings, George Mauner, The American Federation of Arts. 2000
2. Impressionism Art, Leisure & Parisian Society, Robert L.Herbert, Yale University Press, New Haven & London. 1988
3. Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, James N. Wood, The Art Institute of Chicago. 2000
4. Impressionism, Belinda Thomson and Michael Howard, Bison Books Corp. 1988

Friday, November 21, 2008

Charismatic Yong Joon - Manet Series I

Dear sisters ..... I'd like to organize my little home a bit and include some of my past writings. This is my very first art series on Manet posted in Quilt back in July 2006. I just want to include it here for record purposes. Hehe, if you have read it before, please don't mind me :) Here it goes .....

I am recently studying a rare collection of illustrated letters by French Impressionist painter Edouard Manet. As I peruse each illustration, my heart is overflowed with unspeakable joy and tender emotions. The circumstances surrounding these letters remind me so much of our connections to our dear Yong Joon. I’d like to invite you to join me to stroll down a romantic journey of “Charismatic Yong Joon”, complemented by Manet’s sensuous illustrative writings.

Manet had a genuine admiration for refinement and elegance, an aspect of his personality that was evident in his tasteful attire, his mannerism, courtliness and wit. He had many female acquaintances who admired him, and he reciprocated their affection by writing beautiful letters to them. The text is generally brief touching on topics about fashion, art, social life and relationships, but the enhancements with water-coloured flowers transcend an air of warmth and sincerity. Among the flowers adorned the letters are garden and briar roses, carnations, periwinkles, of particular beauty is its lightness and the way it meshes with the writings. These letters brought tremendous pleasure and tender feelings to their female recipients and constitute some of the most lyrical pages of nineteenth century artistic sensibility.

I cannot resist drawing a parallel comparison between Manet and his female admirers to our dear Yong Joon with us. Throughout all these years, numerous messages were extended to our prince in forms of articles, artworks, music, videos of varying styles and themes - be it sentimental, romantic, powerful or humorous, all subconsciously desiring responses from our prince. Occasionally we received pictures of him revealing himself in the most alluring and demure fashion – we gratefully accepted this as our precious reward from him. Dear sisters, I herein attempt to complement these two sensual subjects – Yong Joon and Manet’s illustrative writings. Let us imagine the way our prince answers to each and every one of us!

Our handsome prince charming is smiling to his family,

gosijo's translated script - only fragments are legible

3rd & 4th line : ‘mon séjour prolongé à Bellevue’ - ‘my extended stay in Bellevue’
8th line : ‘le mois d’Octobre’ - ‘the month of October’

he is thinking about the precious times we spent together …..

he is dreaming about the good times when we meet again …..

gosijo's translated script - only fragments are legible

1st line : ‘Chère petite (?) Demoiselle’ - ‘Dear little Miss’
Last line : donner hier soir de vos - It seems as if Manet is saying that someone else ‘gave me last night’ news about the young woman he’s writing to

he desires to paint out his beautiful sensuous thoughts,

and contemplates to compose a poetic passage to serenade us!

gosijo's translated script - This one seems to have been written on the 20th of October (abbreviated as 8bre since ‘octo’ means 8) and it is possible that Manet, given he was soon due to return to his regular home, is reminding a certain Mademoiselle about a lunch date she had meant to issue. I can’t be sure if Manet’s use of the 1st person plural is meant to include others or just him.

The First six lines are very clear : ‘Chère Mademoiselle,Vous nous aviezpromis de venir nousdemander à déjeuner avantnotre retour. L’avez-vousoublié et ne nous donnerez-vous pas…’ - ‘Dear Miss,You had promisedto come and invite us for lunch beforeour return. Have you (perhaps)forgotten and will you notgive us…’

I have selected 15 beautiful illustrations from Manet’s collection to share with you. If you like these artworks, I hope to post them in various groupings in the future as I attempt to match (at a snail pace) thousands of Yong Joon’s pictures to complement the mood of each painting (and vice versa). Hope you enjoy this first of the Manet series!

Acknowledgements :
1. Thanks to bb for the abundance choice of pictures.
2. Thanks to liezle for the suggestion of links to the pictures.

References :
1. Manet The Still-Life Paintings, George Mauner, The American Federation of Arts. 2000
2. Impressionism Art, Leisure & Parisian Society, Robert L. Herbert, Yale University Press, New Haven & London. 1988
3. Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, James N. Wood, The Art Institute of Chicago. 2000
4. Impressionism, Belinda Thomson and Michael Howard, Bison Books Corp. 1988

Monday, November 17, 2008

The 'only' Insu

Hi Hi dear sisters ... I really appreciate all your warm wishes. Hehe, to thank you, I'll treat you to some eye candies, ok? Don't you think he's so handsome around the 'Insu' time, especially during this photo shoot inside the studio? Please bear with me, allow me to be a little silly, huh :)

Ouch, so itchy!

Aiyo, can't reach it!

Hyeong, can you give me a hand here?

To the right .... a little higher .... yeah yeah, right there!

Now Insu ssi, how do you plan to repay me for my service?
Hmmmm (face turns red) .... let's see what I have in my pocket?

Hehe, how about this sweater? You look mighty handsome in it.
Maybe it'll make me look as handsome as him too. (Dir. Hur starts fantasizing .....)

Then I could save a bundle and be 'Insu' myself (Dir. Hur continues to dream and can't control his happiness......).

Ummmm hyeong, annigouyo. Not unless you want to be the only one watching in the cinema :)
pictures posted in baidu by wlbyj

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Birthday reflections

Hi Hi my dear sisters ...... I am never big on occasions - birthdays, anniversaries. It may sound corny, but I really think if you are happy, then everyday is a celebration. Hehe having said that, I can't keep quiet about my birthday today as this is my very first birthday in Japan, a country which I love dearly.

I read this list recently sent from Coco which I like to share with you. I have edited some of it :

1. When you wake up in the morning complete the following statement : My purpose today is to __________. I am thankful for ______________.

2. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day. Talk to God about what is going on in your life.

3. Take a 30 minute walk every day. And while you walk, smile and say ‘Hi’ to people you meet.

4. Try to make at least three people smile each day.

5. Drink green tea and plenty of water.

6. Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants.

7. Don't waste your precious energy on gossip, issues of the past, negative thoughts or things you cannot control.

8. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

9. Make peace with your past so it won't spoil the present.

10. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

11. What other people think of you, who cares?

12. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.

13. GOD heals everything - but you have to ask Him.

14. When you are feeling down, start listing your many blessings. You'll be amazed how truly blessed you are.

15. Each night before you go to bed complete the following statements : Today I accomplished _________. I am thankful for __________.

Hehe, you wouldn't think I will leave without adding my own 2 cents worth, do you?

16. My daily dose of Bae supplements has kept my spirit young and healthy more than all the vitamins, calcium, glucosamines all combined.

17. My knowing Yong Joon has opened up my eyes to see a more beautiful, harmonious and hopeful world.

18. My admiration for Yong Joon has driven my rusty brain to think, learn, be passionate and try my best.

19. Hehe, my obsession with Yong Joon has flourished my life with the warmth, love and laughter from my dear Bae sisters (and also gained one major rival 'my chinggu' whom will not give up her fight with me over HRH until all our hair is pulled out!)

Thank you Yong Joon and my dear sisters for entering my life. Thank you my family and TO friends for always loving me unconditionally. May we all live with the purity of a child, courage of an adolescent, the charm of an adult and the wisdom of the aged. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Retracing YJ's steps - Toride

Dear sisters ….. thank you so much for reading and leaving me your comments in the Kamakura outing, I am so touched at your interests. The credit belongs to cloudnine who has so tirelessly arranged the itinerary and guided us around. Hehe, since moi can’t offer much, so I was just quietly observing and recording the days’ events. Thanks thanks cloudnine for the educational tour. Next, shall we move onto Toride?

You remember in the Megane Ichiba CF making video, Yong Joon looked so excited telling us about the crew would all go to eat ramen after filming? He said this was his first time eating out in this Tokyo trip, poor boy! (fyi : he worried about causing a commotion in Tokyo, so he had room service at Conrad during his entire stay, well except once to Gosireh I suppose.)

Today we had the honour of Pallet and moichan joining us, we met at Shibuya crossing, probably one of the busiest intersection in the world. Trust me, on any regular day when all pedestrian lights turn green, there are literally 1000 people crossing the intersection.

Toride is located in Shibuya, about 30 minutes walk from the subway station. If you watch Amazing Race (yeah yeah, my whole family is big fan), you know it’s almost impossible to decipher an address in Tokyo because the streets have no name and do not follow any grid systems. Other than having bionic legs or built-in rollers under your feet, the best way I'd say is to follow other Bae sisters. Finally Toride, a traditional storefront for a small ramen shop. The 3 benches in front actually reminded me of bb's post on how the NHK crew took turn lining up so they could have all 25 seats inside the shop :)

Inside is quite small and dark. In front of the open kitchen are a row of counter seats.

and a small quiet corner for 4,

then a huge table for 10 that Yong Joon sat at (the far left I believe). You see, 2 Japanese sisters were eating there already :)

Hehe, like most of the small Japanese eateries, the patrons are usually male workers and they tend to walk in and want a no-fuss quick bite, then go on with their living. Now suddenly Toride has these ladies all dressed up in groups as if they are coming in for an afteronoon of high tea and leisure chat. All thanks to one single late night visit by Yonsama!

Like Raitei, there is an unwritten Yonsama course. It’s not on the menu, so be sure to ask, ok? The House ramen (with shredded pork, half-boiled egg, nori) and gyoza (dumplings)

Nigiri rice balls (hehe, this is Kelly’s)

Yong Joon also ate dessert – strawberry ice? and drank beer I believe, but we didn’t order them. I particularly like the pork bone soup base. It’s milky white, very sweet and tasty, so different from other ramen shops’ salty miso or greasy soyu soup. Chuao!

Next, we had a very important mission – to boost up the Japanese economy. Well actually, it’s Jessica, Jos and Kelly’s jobs but I am just happy to be the accomplice. Kelly and Jessica are determined to have their Yonsama eyeglasses while Jos couldn’t bear to miss the chance to shop for Japanese fashion. Hehe, I don’t blame you Jos, I have been here for 10 months and I still can't get enough of those pretty Japanese fashion@@.

By now, you must be very familiar with the display of Megane Ichiba already. This cube display is new though, have to show you ....

Then Kelly (the serious photographer with all the equipments to match) noticed how unprofessional I was using only one hand to snap a shot. Hmmmm, as I recall, some hunk did the same not too long ago, and his picture turned out just fine :)

Kelly kindly gave me some tips on how to capture a shot at a better angle, even re-arranging the store display!

Kelly and Jessica decided to use their Yonsama frames for sunglasses (which I am sure they have a few pairs at home already :) Hehe, looks like it’s an unwritten rule that we Bae fans always buy 2 of the same Yong Joon’s goods; one to use, the other one untouched, in its original wrapping for keepsake?

Since we have wait for 25 minutes for their glasses to be ready. We went to a nearby coffee shop and this was my cafe latte :)

Their plan was to go to Park BOF after and then dinner at Gosireh with more Japanese sisters waiting. When the clock struck 3pm, I felt a bit sad as I had to switch my role from a carefree Bae fan back to being a caring mother (and I am sure Yong Joon would want us to live responsibly too:) I had no choice but to bid farewell to Jessica, Jos, Kelly and all the sisters. Hehe, maybe cloudnine can fill us in on the exciting events I had missed that night? By now, the JF sisters should be back home safe and sound. Hope you ladies had a sweet and wonderful memory of Japan :)