Divide Blue

 

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There was one colour popped out in my mind when I was about to repainting my room. It is one of my comfort colours after black and white; dark grey. I always find it classy and soothing. But I changed my mind.

Dark blue came as an option and ended with a colour accident. I got the blue (well, I didn’t go to get the paint. I wish I could that day), the blue was okay, it was quite dark but bright enough for a room. I worried if it was too dark it wouldn’t bring a good mood in the morning when the sunshine falls on it.



I always found the white before was great cause it was easy on the eye, versatile, and clean. Okay, the day to apply the blue I had to face one issue: it was not enough for one wall. I just wanted only one wall and the rest would be repainted on white. Long story short, I got somebody to get one more tin with the wrong blue which was ridiculous (he didn’t even bring the code to the store, Lord). I sent him again and got the same blue. Walla ;), the same blue looked different when I was applying on the first blue. Another issue. Problem solved by quick thinking: I mixed the wrong + the right blue and ended looking like the blue on Ed Sheeran’s Divide Album cover.

I found it was such a step from my comfort colour. It doesn’t look bad, does it?



I have two things to do every Sunday morning for this room: cleaning is compulsory, rearranging those things every week refreshes the look.


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Upgrading

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Later on December last year when I wanted to update this blog (read: editing session which took way too long) after work, I found my MacBook had a problem. The battery showed red even when it was still charging. Zero percent, damn. I just upgraded the storage which was typical Apple spare part (read: costly, the good news: somebody paid for me). The day after, I found that the trackpad didn’t work well. Okay, I had no plan to break my vow again after an iPhone X.

But I had one excuse: seven years plus with me wasn’t a bad thing. My first laptop was a MacBook Pro. My second one is a thinner MacBook Pro. Comes in my fav color, space grey.

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I need to sort few things out for this MacBook to support my needs. Design softwares, USB connector, oh money is just flying around. I’m completely aware to be an Apple person, first rule: lifestyle isn’t cheap. But let’s put it this way, I’m upgrading my tool to upgrade my future. Having some plans to step to a higher stage on 2019. Bismillah.

P.S. These photographs were edited with an iPhone X through VSCO plus Phonto for layouts, taken with Sony A6300 + 35mm f/1.8 OSS premium.  Site shown on the first photograph is a beautiful web by Chris Ozer

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Once In A While


…just to love yourself, am I right?…


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After had a quite rough week I decided to send myself a gift (I’m not trying to be exaggerated but what if I tell you I had to use staircase more than six times to 6th floor cause the lift was stopped (at midnight!!) when I was directing my team to finish a book launch). I’ve been very straight recently not to buy new things (I’m really trying not to break my vow, spending money for an iPhoneX. Wish me luck! oh this doesn’t count please) but again, once in a while because why not.

I finally gave myself a thing I’d been eyeing for after I met the same bag but in black, three times at three different stores. I kept saying no to myself cause “well, I still could manage a tote bag I got in Kyoto” “a bit faded, anyway”“but, you had a bigger one the same brand, but you left it in Indonesia, so?” till I came to the last store yesterday and said “where’s my new baby? :)”

It wasn’t because my very good friend, Reza, did the same thing by giving himself a gift by flying to Stockholm today (yes, flying to Sweden!, I’m fine Za tho sometimes #YouAreNotNiceZabut giving ourselves a gift to appreciate hard work we’ve done is a nice thing.

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Why Hostel

If I remember, one time in the evening just few hours before I flew to Singapore last year, Winda was the one who tried to find me a hotel. Judge me lackadaisical, I don’t mind.

 


“How could you travel to another country and never reserve one room?”


 

I sat down looking at Winda and Ayos with some sushies that night like a sleepy koala. Wondering why I wanted to have vacation but never had a place to sleep. When Winda found some affordable what affordable if we talk about Singapore? hotels, I said please do. At least, I had a room even Winda booked only for one night and thought I could find some cheaper ones when I got there. I arrived in the morning in Singapore and went straight to the hotel after I got my MRT card. Checking in and went straight to my room and realised I would stay with a bed just few inches from the door. My room was so small, compare with the price I paid, it made me sounds like a jackass right now. I had to extend one more night with higher rate cause I didn’t look for another hotel and it made my expenses went crazy. Till the last night in Singapore, I and my travel companion, Maya, decided to move to a nice hostel somewhere at China Town. We had our own room with separate beds of course. The bathroom is inside so we didn’t need to share with other travelers. Lesson learned.

Two months before I travelled back to Indonesia, almost every night I looked for hotels and hostels for my Japan trip. I didn’t realise that looking for where I would stay was such a treat esp if I looked at some five stars hotels in Paris, sigh!. There was so many interesting hotels in Tokyo and Kyoto, but my heart said ‘try hostel’ instead.

 


“First, I could save money cause hotels in Tokyo is expensive. I could get a small room (yes, very small room!) for more than $100. Second, a whole day I won’t be in my room, so why I have to spend more money if what I needed was a bed in the night? and third, I got a bonus by staying in hostel (I’ll tell you later!).

 Now, you can see that I’ve learned a lot how to spend money from my Singapore trip”


 

A day before I applied my Japan visa, I had to update my hostels since I changed my duration of stay both in Tokyo and Kyoto. And this is another tips for you guys, checking the rate on booking.com days before you fly, you may get a lower price if you’re lucky. So, don’t lay on one price. As long as you have enough time for free cancellation, it’s okay to look at the rate. I could save more than $70 dollars from two hostels I picked, it was good right?

My decision to stay in a hostel when I was in Japan was so right. I felt it when I spent two days in Tokyo. I went to places a whole day and came back around 10-11 pm everyday. So what I really needed was a place to sleep. And the third reason why hostel such a best choice was I got new friends! For a person who tried hostel for the first time like me, that was another experience. By staying in hostel, you’ll get an opportunity to meet with new people around the world. I didn’t say that you have to know all of them, but if you’re lucky, you’ll get new ‘good’ friends which hopefully, you’ll meet them in another place somewhere on this earth. Who knows? You just need to make friend sincerely and keep in touch, right? (I’ll share some of them on another post! :))

So here are a short review of two hostels I stayed in Tokyo and Kyoto. I personally put these two as recommended hostels in Japan!

 


GRIDS HOSTEL & LOUNGE AKIHABARA

I learned so much about my hotel in Singapore. When you choose a place to stay, you have to think your access to move around. A hotel/hostel that near train station is always a good idea. It will make your movement so much easier. Of course, you must think about the rate. Also, read the reviews from other travelers who used to stay there on booking.com or other sites.

The main reason why I chose Grids Hostel & Lounge Akihabara was near two major stations and their reception can speak English very well, I think this is important too since you know most of Japanese can not speak English. I graduated from design school, so if I have to choose a place to stay I’ll always choose boutique hotel/hostel, of course!. Grids has that industrial look, the design is fine, not too heavy yet appropriate. The review I read on booking.com was good, too. It’s not a secret that Japanese is extremely neat and clean, and this hostel has that point. The bed, the bathroom, the lobby, everything is clean. I had no complain about the cleanness. Maybe only the size of the cube is quite small for me (since I chose POD “bed”) so I had to manage to move on my bed without making noise. If you travel with your friends I recommend to choose ryokan or premium room, you’ll definitely feel more comfortable. But if you want to save more and have no problem with sound of snoring (from other traveler :D!), pod bed is not a bad thing.

Here are some iPhone pictures of the Grids Hostel & Lounge Akihabara that I took just before I said bye-bye to Tokyo. I spent two nights there before I moved to Kyoto, and spent three nights when I came from Kyoto.

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At Grids, I met with two good friends (three actually, but hmm, let’s count two only! – will write about them on a separate post) that still in touch until now :)

 


THE LOWER EAST NINE HOSTEL

In Kyoto, I fell in love. The first time I arrived at Kyoto station and took a train to the next station, Kujo station, I said “I love Kyoto more than Tokyo”. I love city life but Kyoto stole my heart. Maybe because my interest in Japanese culture is stronger than its ‘bling-bling’ life.

I arrived in the afternoon and went straight to The Lower East Nine to drop my things before I went to Nishiki market. When I entered the hostel I loved the space, so much. Again, boutique hostel will always be my choice. And to be honest, this one was so much better than the one in Tokyo. I love everything about this hostel. I love the design, the space, the bed is bigger! so I could sleep more comfortable, the bathroom is more private! and sure very clean!, and what I love the most that it has a kitchen and living room upstairs. Living room is such a brilliant idea where you can relax and meet with other travelers and have a conversation, sharing your stories and experiences when you get back from your ‘a-whole-day-exploring-Kyoto’. Kitchen upstairs is a good idea too when you can brew your own coffee, or making a bowl of hot noodles when it’s raining outside, or you just want to stare at the window with a cup of green tea in your hand.

If my hostel in Tokyo is for men-only or women-only in one room, The Lower East Nine is the opposite. Boys and girls can stay in the same room, this is not a bad thing as long as you can behave, right? 

Staying two nights in this hostel made me met with Joe, Svewn, two young ladies from UK (I forgot their names :|), and Simon, he is a German. I’ll share how I met them on separate post :).

Here are some iPhone pictures I took on my second day in Kyoto.

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“being a tourist with manner is important, staying in a hostel with manner, too”


 

I know I repeated the sentence above from my previous post. Staying in a hostel with manner it is very important, why? Because the room is not only yours! the bathroom is not yours also! So, we must have awareness and understanding to keep the public area well and behave, too. I thanked God when I stayed in those two hostels I had no experience meeting ‘drunker-traveler’ when I wanted to close my eyes at night, but seriously, when I found underwear wasn’t in place where it should be, hairs on the sink (you should clean it after shaving!), or using a hair-dryer in the middle of the night without closing the bathroom’s door? That was not nice! :)

But overall, I recommend you guys who travel alone by staying in a hostel. Pick the good one that fits with your budget, enjoy your stay, make friends as many as you can (this is good to expand your networking in the future, but pick who can be your good friends!).

You can spend your money more by enjoying proper food when you’re in vacation right? or new outfits? or even, experience a proper fine dining at five-star hotel? :)

 

Birthday Gifts

I was so sad when I realised I lost my stainless watch two weeks ago.

I had no idea where I left it either somewhere at my office or fell on taxi seat on my way home. Even it was one of my oldest wrist watch but it had a journey with me. You may think this sounds exaggerated but I always appreciate memories behind a thing. But then, I can’t cry a night long for my watch cause I believe so that something may come and go.

Hope you will not judge this is an excuse to get something new. Oops.

Gifts1After I finished tighten my belt for my own house early this year, I should enjoy a bit by grabbing some new favourite things. And yep, it’s been a while I didn’t pamper myself with a wrist watch from my favourite brand, Fossil. So, I decided to pick one design that just fit on my wrist, a simple silver watch with black leather bans. Since my wrist is so thin, I feel this just a perfect one.

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Oh yes, I opened Zara apps on my iPhone just to eye some pieces that took my attention. Such a ritual every time I realise I’ll travel soon to Indonesia. Oh, May, please rush :)

 

And I had no clue why on a lazy afternoon I thought about a pair of Adidas Superstar.

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