Rizal Park stroll

Taken so long ago — see my hair was terribly short, not to mention horrible — when I helped Christiane take photos and videos for his project.

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Exhilarating.

was the first word that came to mind as my eyes revelled at the sight of luscious greens and reds and the orange tinge that covered the trees, so randomly arranged that it reminded me of the color-by-number books I used to have as a child. It was the breathtaking beauty of autumn in all its crowning glory.

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The road to Osaka Castle

I will never tire of using the word beautiful to describe every place I went to in Japan. There’s just no sense of redundancy when we’re talking about its profusion of flora and fauna, the uniformly paved roads, fresh whiz of breeze, and the perfect manifestation of mother nature meets technological progress.

Even here at the Osaka Castle, where its walls were silent witnesses to the ravages of war, one can see the ancient façade that houses the automated tour guides serving as the mouth, articulating what its walls had seen.

Too bad the spirit of autumn couldn’t show me the pretty pink sea of cherry blossom leaves, gently falling on the fresh spring grass.

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Today, we went to visit the Shrines along the Nanshuji temple,
the place where Japanese tea ceremony was born. 

We were lucky that my otousan’s cousin ran the place, so we got a tour and a priceless experience of sadou here.

And see, I got to wear a kimono, yay!

On a more embarrassing note, the whole tour was conducted in Japanese, so I was only able to get a few snippets of information from it. (nod a little here, pretend to understand, hai hai.) Such shame for a Japanese studies student. Sigh.

Scratch my drama, and enjoy the lovely photos of the temple. Cheers!

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Stocking-less on a faintly freezing football field

—one of the worst mistakes, ever.

After the boat tour we played futsal at the J-Green field, with our team as the victor, thanks to the guys from Indonesia and Cambodia!

I was a flop, unsurprisingly. I kicked the ball all over the place, steering it to the left when I wanted it to go right, passing to my opponents instead of my teammates, bumping against everyone; you get the point.

It was also the first time (and last) I got sweaty in pre-winter Japan, where my dream somehow came true—aircon feels wherever I go—except indoors, where heaters are used. But that setting made me feel weird ‘cos since the malls, trains, and buildings were all tepid, they reminded of the unpleasant feeling of being in a non-airconditioned room in the Philippines. We were wearing thick coats, mind you.

…but outdoors, oh god how I loved walking home along clean, paved roads in that sweet autumn breeze ♪

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Taken at the balcony of Koukyuan, a Japanese restaurant and events place, with Roman and sensei, squinty eyes ‘cos medyo maaraw

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With the Sakai City volunteers, the sensei and Minkantaishi from Cambodia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, and of course, the Philippines! (I can’t remember why the Indonesians weren’t here. They were probably taking selfies or something, lols)

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The cutie lion plushie that I really wanted to take home, badly!

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Oh well, picture na lang 🙂

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In one of the traditional Japanese tea ceremony rooms

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Warmly welcomed by the Butsuryo College of Osaka ♥

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We were grouped with the students and each country had to teach a native song to them, and vice versa. We taught them paa, tuhod, balikat, ulo, while we learned AKB48’s Aitakatta from them, haha!

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I got home early this day, so my host family took me to Loft. I bought Frixion highlighters, make-up for pasalubong, and a pretty aqua home for my phone. The 3nd on the envelope’s a typo, in case you haven’t noticed. It’s one of the 17 letters Christiane gave me before I left for Japan, along with a mix tape with 17 songs and a box of chocolates ♥

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