Rhapsodizing Coffee Prince & An Ode To Gong Yoo


Okay, I’m going to divulge one thing before rhapsodizing a Korean drama that made me such an infatuated teenager lately: I am a fan of Gong Yoo.

If saying I’m a newbie die-hard fan is too much, I am unperturbed.

~

((clearingthroats))

This post might be a bit “too-long” but this is written with so much feeling deep of admiration. To Gong Yoo, and to one drama I had a crush with. Should I open a bottle of red wine for us, too, before we start?

((droppingthemic))


I crossed my legs on the floor when I was about to end my day by sleeping early. It was after 9 PM, my MacBook was still on, I was in front of a free-streaming website trying to remember one particular movie I never watched. I had watched Love, Simon the day before on the same website so I typed Parasite. The two were not on Netflix here, so I said woah! when I found them. Unfortunately, there was no English subtitle for Parasite. Postponed, later ~ it was just I became lackadaisical finding English subtitle and adding it in the web. I was about to lay on the bed but my mind was holding on one particular title: Train To Busan.

I knew I was waaay behind since the movie itself was booming in 2016 when people online talked how epic the movie was. I am not worried if you say I am dated by divulging “Hey, I just watched Train To Busan in 2020”. I was under the blanket back then until I later understood why the score is 94% in Rotten Tomatoes. If Lucy was the first movie ever (I mean it, ever) that made me awoke in the over-chilled cinema for the whole ninety minutes (as I could easily fall to sleep in the cinema, most of the times), Train To Busan was the one that made my heart jumped and my eyes roused. It is such a movie I won’t mind watching it for the seventh time.

I wrote the sentence above with pride and also homework. I have to look more from Gong Yoo’s catalogues after A Man And A Woman, Silenced, Kim Ji-young: Born 1982, Goblin (I’m still on episode 2). I have no doubts praising his talent, so I would just take more of his movies for reference purpose. Yes, Train To Busan is an impressive movie, but the one that turned me as a fan of Gong Yoo, in particular, was his role in what I could call as my favourite Korean drama till my dying day: Coffee Prince.



Till my dying day sounds exaggerated, but again, let me be endlessly exaggerated if I talk about Coffee Prince. This sounds so miffed, no offence. Oh, I’m a Taurus. If Taurus loves something, he’ll show his love all out. Sometimes it’s too much, off one’s nut. For instance, the way I printed some favourite scenes of Coffee Prince and pasted on my wall ~ oh why, why am I so obsessed, my world. Trust me, I was laughing inside when I was standing at the printing shop. By the time I saw Gong Yoo and Yoon Eun-Hye’s faces printed so many, I felt like I was 11 years old collecting his favourite celebrity posters, a euphoric happiness.



I was once on Netflix after watching Train To Busan and found some KDramas starring Gong Yoo after typing his name. I did try one titled “Big”. I cursed. How cheesy, nope, skipped, never. Hush, it perhaps was an untimely judgement when I just watched Gong Yoo’s acting as a doctor in flash and suddenly gave a solid conclusion that the first fifteen minutes of episode 1 was so cheesy. Not him, the whole impression of the drama was not just for me, so “I would give a try for Coffee Prince, let see how this drama goes.”.

Since I came back to be a little more active on Instagram, IG Stories to be exact, there was one time I shared some thoughts on the day I started Coffee Prince. One of my good friends, Dwi Putri, replied that Coffee Prince is such a legendary Korean drama. Hold on, how could she think that way? Not ruining my expectation as I had none, also she was kind enough by not telling what the drama was all about but to left me enjoying the ride instead. She holds a Master Degree in Contemporary Korean Literature and Drama from Seoul National University*, trusting Putri as she said Coffee Prince is one of monumental Korean dramas is a hundred percent yes.

I started the premiere episode with nothing but a guess where the storyline would lead to. I did wonder why I felt like watching an old series as I laid eyes on the angles, cinematography, lighting, costumes and settings and felt like oldies. Little did I know Coffee Prince was released in 2007. Well I see. I was mesmerized on Chocolate‘s cinematography, my first Korean drama I have ever watched. Comparing the two isn’t Apple to Apple so I left my thought behind and enjoyed the whole first episode. I stayed for sixty-two minutes with joy in the air, “This is sweet. Hold on, she is Eun-chan, Go Eun-chan and his name? Oh okay, Han-kyul, Choi Han-kyul.”

The two names marked in my brain from day one.


“Rhapsodizing Coffee Prince for me comes from three things: one, the love story. Two, Gong Yoo. Three, the overload winsomeness of Han-kyul and Eun-chan.“

Number three is the one I love the most. I mean, the idea of their love story? I might want to give a warm tight hug to the writers to congratulate how clever the love story was written.

Gong Yoo in 2007? kein Zweifel, natürlich. If in his portfolio mentioning his role in Coffee Prince as the breakthrough to stardom, that is not because he is an incredible actor, it is just because he is Gong Ji-Cheol. A charismatic and indeed one of the best Korean actors of all time but Han-kyul is what we have to agree as one of his unforgettable roles, fo e fah. What I mean as “we”, is all of you even though you never watch, or about to, or have watched Gong Yoo in Coffee Prince. Just agree with me and we could become friends. A cheesy exertion but trust me, you would love him both as Han-kyul and Gong Yoo himself.

I once threw a joke to one of my friends who also loves watching Korean Dramas, why when we find Korean drama that matches with our particular interests, related to the story, from the charming actors until how sweet the story is, we could be stuck from episode one till the end. When people I followed on Twitter were talking about Itaewon Class or It’s Okay Not To Be Okay, I used to think why they were crazy about Korean drama? Like, what made them following the series which mostly takes an hour for one episode, isn’t that quite inane? If I am not mistaken, the two dramas were updated weekly. Then I remembered, I shouldn’t have thought that shallow because my heart jumped when there was a notification on my iPhone every time the new episode of Sex Education was available. I went crazy whilst I kept wondering what would the next story be?

When people went nuts for Korean drama on Twitter I stayed away until I later sank.

I wondered, perhaps, Coffee Prince was a curse for me. It must be, a sweet curse.

“I made a promise to myself that the last two episodes had to be celebrated in a proper way possible.“

I ended Chocolate on Sunday morning, with two forms of chocolate, coffee, popcorn, potato chips, plus candle after a “seven-days” gap. But Coffee Prince took longer for my heart to be actually ready witnessing the end of the story. From the day I started episode one and dived so swiftly until I reached episode fifteen, I gave myself fourteen days to be ready for the last two episodes. Was it enough? of course not. Too much? see, I do not care what people would think how this drama had turned me upside down, I mean it. I sometimes felt I was not OK diving into Coffee Prince deep and deeper from one episode to another. During two weeks time I fled from Coffee Prince by watching another Korean drama titled Fight For My Way and What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim? whilst I did guess every single day on how Eun-chan and Han-kyul’s love story leading to. Also, what were surprises I would find at the end.

“Should I, tonight?.”, opened Netflix, the closed. Another day, “Tonight? No, I am not in such a scurry.”, nope.

Another day, “I have to celebrate more than what I did for Chocolate, so let me think what to do.”, another day, until twenty four days passed. It’s crazy, isn’t it? My only justification was: “I am not ready to end Han-kyul and Eun-chan’s cuteness. I just definitely can’t.”.

A day before August 9th I had prepared few things for the finale as I imagined: red wine, cherries, chicken barbeque, salty biscuits and blackberries. Just in case on Sunday I woke up with an ardent heart to end it. I thought two hours before the sunset was the perfect time to experiencing the end of Coffee Prince. Everything was set. I took some photographs before I opened my MacBook and went straight to click episode sixteen. Then I stopped, ‘”No, not today. My heart’s frail”.

I drank the red wine while I enjoyed the sunset from my window.



August 16 // 8:55 AM // Episode 16. The last episode before the finale.

A week after what I then called a rehearsal, I finally saw the light. When I thought two last episodes could be celebrated with one proper celebration, I did tweak the idea and broke it into two.

“Why don’t you welcome episode sixteen in the perfect morning, have a proper breakfast, brew delicious coffee with Moka pot, biscuits, also some cupcakes.”

Eun-chan’s depiction as a hardworking lady whose work spirit is genuine and diligently sacrificing for the sake of her family stole my heart from the very beginning. And I know myself so well, any story of “dream & determination” or “reach-your-dream” per se, I’ll buy it. There is a particular scene in episode 5 when the coffee shop just operated and they take a trip to the countryside. Han-kyul casually asks what is Eun-chan’s dream and she replies to live happily with her mom and sister, that is so simple yet meaningful. Later in episode 15, she opens to Han-kyul that her dream is to become a world-class barista. That teaches me that everyone deserves to dream big and has to fight for it no matter what.

Although generally, her life story has a bit “Cinderella-ish” spice, the way I love it is the fact that there is no such a shortcut for her which makes the whole story seems so real. I do love that she stands on her feet and using all support systems around her cleverly. And Han-kyul on this part? He has so many perfect boyfriend materials indeed. I love the way he supports her dream to study to Milan and leaves his ego of marriage aside, that shows he grows as a matured man. Oh shit I think there is no need to express how adorable their steamy kiss in Eun-chan’s room leads to cranky-too-cute Han-kyul in writing, and ew also the last scene in episode 16 :).


 


August 16th // 16:37 PM // The Finale

My heart was a bit fickle as if I was in between of excitement and desolation leading to the finale.

It was a perfect afternoon with rosé, spicy pizza, rosemary potato chips, grapes, and natural light. I guess that day the universe supported my imagination on how to honour the end of Coffee Prince. Everything went smoothly although my heart was jumping like “Woah, this is it! Would I love or hate the ending woah, it’s here!”. When the opening of episode 17 started, I was trying not to let my what-ifs sank. I knew I wasn’t just being an infatuated kid for Coffee Prince.


 


 

Frankly speaking, the only expectation I had for Coffee Prince was the finale. I won’t say I was disappointed that much witnessing their love story came to end but there was something that didn’t hit the “it-should-be-more-memorable” ending imho. Covering stories of each character in one episode seems baggy although it doesn’t do justice as the core of the whole story that matters. I won’t chide more but sharing my favourite scenes from the finale; the rooftop scene at the beginning is cute, super cute. When Eun-chan falls asleep while she is still on call with Han-kyul is adorable.

I love the scene when Han-kyul guides Eun-chan on the phone when she is packing all her needs in a suitcase, also to mention that the emotion of her mom and her little sister is subtle but feels so real. “WHY HAN-KYUL does not want to accompany Eun-chan before she departs to Italy, why??…” but Gong Yoo’s acting in his car crying after Eun-chan said saranghae is a BIG YES. I love the way their long-distance relationship is being framed with Eun-chan’s polaroids, I also love the scene showing that the friendship among Min-yeop, Ha-rim, Sun-ki along with Gae-shik has grown in the Coffee Prince shop. The way Eun-chan casually comes to surprise Han-kyul and he doesn’t seem “so-surprised” is a bit disappointing for me although I know the devil is in the detail. But their dialogue saves that (remembering the way he asked Eun-chan’s ID in the early episode), also thanks to Gong Yoo’s flawless acting skill.


 


 

Summing up, the finale still evokes the same emotion as there are many simply amusing scenes in which I have to agree with my friend, Putri, Coffee Prince is still one of the memorable legendary Korean Dramas till date.


“Natural, remarkable and whimsically adorable, are three words I’ll use to picture Eun-chan and Han-kyul’s love story.”

In my humble opinion, the round applause for Coffee Prince goes to the fact that Gong Yoo and Yoon Eun-Hye’s role as a couple was unfeigned in a real life. It was a bit hard to believe all those fights and tears were not real, all those cute moments were not scripted, literally everything.

It is implausible not to mention which and which scenes of Coffee Prince are “worth-to-be-watched” for hundred times. I may lost count but I do have some remarkable ones in heart and mind. When Eun-chan hilariously meets shirtless Han-kyul for the first time. The iconic beach scene when Han-kyul is hardly holding his feeling. All those fights happen at the back of the refurbished coffee shop. That midnight scene when he drives back to Coffee Prince to admit his feeling to her (in which he still believes Eun-chan was a guy) and lands passionate kiss to her, Meine Güte, his words after that kiss are so powerful. When Eun-chan cries her eyes out in front of Han-sung telling how much she loves Han-kyul, omo. All those ‘super-duper-cute’ scenes when he shows his signs of love to her, his smiles, her clumsy ‘omg-he-loves-me’ acts, so many, so many without one single trite scene.


 


 

For me personally, the core of Coffee Prince exists in episode 12. The opening scene is unforgettable, the way Han-kyul gives Eun-chan only three minutes to clarify whatsoever she wants to say while she keeps sobbing for forgiveness on the second floor is something else (IT IS SOMETHING ELSEin capital and bold, bitte). Han-kyul’s cry when he expects her as someone who’ll trust even the whole world goes against him is heartbreaking, it almost SWOONED me. His emotion is so damn raw, oh Gong Yoo. Excuse me, who had an idea of the chestnut scene? A scene when Eun-chan goes to his apartment while Han-kyul himself is staring at Eun-chan’s bedroom from his mini-cooper, holy moly, and the smile of Han-kyul after making up to Eun-chan? I died, yikes. The day after the chestnut scene, when he arrives at the coffee shop and smiles at Eun-chan’s scooter, the way Eun-chan blushing when she gives her cellphone to send a heart emoji to Han-kyul, and he smiles ear to ear when he receives it. It is definitely one of my favourite scenes ever (EVER and EVER in the history of Korean Drama, bold in capitals please).


My Dear Youth.


 

I may say one of the felicities during the cruellest summer in this unbelievably year along with folklore is the fact that the cast reunion of Coffee Prince exists in 2020. I could imagine how much the euphoria bursts from Coffee Prince fans around the globe witnessing Gong Yoo and Yoon Eun-Hye sit together at the same memorable place where all those wholesomeness happened thirteen years ago. Thirteen? omo. I became a fan ~ “die-hard” fan as I claimed from the very beginning of this post ~ right after I watched the drama early this year and the excitement I felt in my heart when I first watched Gong Yoo in coffee brown shirt (how clever his stylists picked close to “coffee” theme, I guessed) entering the Coffee Prince shop and touching Eun-chan’s life-size photograph (and says “Eun-chan”) by the entrance paralyzed me; it is so warm and CHARMING I kennot.


 


 

I can’t tell how much My Dear Youth completed the whole experience of mine among Gong Yoo in black shirt himself, episode twelve, the beach and the chestnut scenes, but waking up from a dream that Mas Gong Yoo reunited with Mbak Yoon reminiscing Coffee Prince made me fly peacefully and stayed on cloud nine.


And my last sentence to end this post would sound a little gauche, but I had warned you from the beginning that being exaggerated for Coffee Prince is always allowed:

My unconditional love for Han-kyul and Eun-chan stays to the moon, and the Saturn.

***

side note

Oh, if I am still being crazy for Coffee Prince sometimes in the future, and rewatching it over and over again on Netflix, and I will pretend I miss Han-kyul and Eun-chan’s smiles, then staying late for My Dear Youth for hundred times, look for Dwi Putri (look what you made me do, Put), she is involved for my craziness :).


P.S. All photographs of Coffee Prince’s scenes were taken by screen-shooting from Netflix, My Dear Youth taken from MBCLife official page on YouTube, edited and arranged by me. (*) it is just a joke, anyway :).

Folklore

I am not gonna spin a yarn this time but writing my sincere upstanding to folklore. I’ll try to make it short.

I wrote my appraisal to the genius Taylor Swift here, giving my honest opinions on what is the best among all records she had ever released and best songs from each record. Last week, the whole world was shaken by her again when she suddenly dropped her newest record called folklore ~ yes, it’s stylized in lowercase. You might remember reputation, she never jokes if the album title is written in lowercase. This time around, there was no Easter eggs, not even one, crazy.

I remember I was about to watch another episode of Korean Drama series in the evening when I accidentally opened Twitter and I was bug-eyed when I read,

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“Most of the things I had planned this summer didn’t end up happening, but there is something I hadn’t planned on that DID happen. And that thing is my 8th studio album, folklore. Surprise. Tonight at midnight I’ll be releasing my entire brand new album of songs I’ve poured all of my whims, dreams, fears, and musings into.”

 

 

July, 23rd, 2020.

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The day I woke up on Friday, I could not find the album in iTunes and went straight to YouTube when again, I was a bit shocked that she had released all tracks through visually appealing videos complete with the lyrics.

My impressions when I listened to the first track was

fresh and brilliant, distinct.

In iTunes folklore describes as an alternative album, which is another genre she dug in after the success of country and pop. I was flabbergasted with the storytelling as her power as always, the instrumental details, how smooth and calming the entire sound in the record, the mesmerizing aesthetic, everything about this album is genius. I deeply apologize Red, I used to tell the world that you are her best craft ever, but this time around, folklore stole my entire heart.

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It has been a week I’ve been listening to all songs every single day, delicately sweet through my earpieces, dramatically harmonious in the air through my Allure. Truly, I couldn’t describe in words about August, the sweetest track in the record. I fell in love with Exile (Bon Iver is such a rad. After I listened to Exile, my love to Ed Sheeran when he did sing with Taylor in Everything Has Changed gone. The one with Bon is a killer, man, his voice!), Betty, Seven, Cardigan and all tracks. Yes, all tracks. Oh the bonus track, The Lakes, monumental, poetic. This is a record in my humble opinion, is her irreproachable masterpiece. That is the simplest admiration and respect I could describe.

I almost forgot she wrote Afterglow, Begin Again, and the one and only, All Too Well for a whole week.

 

P.S. The aesthetic above is gathered from different sources in Pinterest.

Fallen On Chocolate


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Two things, I hate white chocolate. I prefer the dark one that has a minimum of 65 per cent cocoa. In case you want to send me a gift, you have a clue now :).

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No, I’m not going to tell you what kind of chocolate I enjoy the most.

I once looked at one of my close friends on how she enjoys spending her weekend on movies at the cinema. You know what it means by watching movies at the cinema: stress-releasing, spending some cash (it’s more if you grab cinema’s pop-corn which has nothing more than cheap packed pop-corn outside), and making free time to actually watch a movie that leaves some memorable memories or even lessons. I did think she lives in a balanced life.

I read one of someone’s tweets on Twitter when she shared a comparison of the cinema in Indonesia with the one in Australia. She made some clear points which in this case, Indonesia wins. It has an excellent sound system, comfortable seats, friendly service, and the most important thing’s affordable. That’s not a lie even it’s more relevant to the big cinema in the main city. Comparing with where I could find since I moved to a city I’ve been living in for years, those four points are missing. And that could be the reason why I could count how many times I went to the cinema here. It’s two and a half times more expensive and less quality. So, how about Netflix? I mean, these days there are variations on how you want to spend leisure time with online platforms.

Here’s the thing: I once made a promise not to include Netflix in my monthly bill. It wasn’t because I didn’t want to spend but mostly about insecurity to waste my time by watching movies. Don’t get me wrong cause I do love watching movies (romance and drama are my genres, please note not an only beautiful-touchy story but when I see interesting sets, I’ll love it!). But I finally swallowed my own vow and I didn’t regret anything. One, it has various interesting movies and series to watch. Two, I don’t need to spend extra money on transport to the cinema cause chilling in my room under the blanket watching Sex Education or Eat Pray Love is much more pleasing. Since I found an offer of cheaper internet subscription (ofc, not all day I can watch in HD! but I feel enough), my decision to join Netflix was just right.

Now, straight to what I want to share. I once did a random pick on what series to watch on the weekend. I never interested in Korean drama before but it suddenly changed my opinion when I found Chocolate. I just picked after I read the short description of the series. The first thing that caught my attention was “These series are mostly about food? It must be interesting as I first watched Chef, will it?”. Second, I heard Korean drama is such a heart-warming one with a happy ending story. Ok, done. Two things were enough to finally fallen to Chocolate.

I didn’t only fall on the love story between Cha Young and Lee-Kang (not to mention how many times I gasped when I watched tear-jerking moments), but more than that is an ocean of life-lesson about love, health, forgiveness, self-love was what made me stay till season 15. I even took a week gap when I knew I was about to end it with the last episode. I mean, I didn’t want to end it just like what I did when I stepped on some pages of Call Me By Your Name by André Aciman (I never read the book again till today cause it’s too beautiful to end). After most of the whole story could be summed up in episode 15, my mind was trying to guess how the end would be. And I did plan how I wanted to end Chocolate because it had to be at the perfect time and in a proper way.

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Sunday morning. Popcorn. Scented candle. Chocolate in two forms, a cake and chocolate bar.

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The mouth-watering food scenes, some picturesque Greece sceneries, artistic cinematography (this one, I mean it!), overload natural cuteness between Ha Ji Won and Yoon Kye Sang (I mean, look at those screen captures I took from the last episode, I just can’t. One of my fav scenes from the entire is on episode 12 when Lee Kang is waiting patiently on his knees at the beach for Cha Young to wake up), and cheesy humor, could be strong reasons for me to influence you to stay at home on the weekend with Chocolate.

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Truth And The Academics

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“Oh, you didn’t go to Disneyland when in Hong Kong?”, someone asked me last week.

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The happiest place on earth, people say, wasn’t on my list then. I honestly thought about it cause I’m still curious (yes, till today) how Disneyland is. Also, I used to be a big fan of Mickey Mouse. Next time if I have an opportunity to travel to countries where Disneyland’s located, I should try to pay a visit at least once in my life.

My answer for such a question above was the same and will always be. I’d stick on my travel style which is fifty percent of my time I’ll use it for “must-visit” places while another fifty percent is free. On the recent vacation, my free time was increased to seventy percent and I loved it somehow. I have a standard time when I visit a country for leisure: it must be minimum seven days stay. It would be great if I could visit at least two different cities but I came to realize that I much prefer to explore one city for a week cause that would give me enough time to find some ideas of my luxury (read: do nothing, coffee-hopping, taking a lot of photographs, late night ice cream? I’m listing). I was lucky enough I had two different cappuccinos at two different excellent coffee shops in two different countries last month.

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TRUTH COFFEE

– Cape Town –


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I had no idea that Truth Coffee was listed as the best coffee shop in the world by The Telegraph on 2016 when I was in Cape Town. You know, I woke up and thought, “Oh a cup of hot cappuccino would be good” then Google was kind enough to let me know Truth Coffee wasn’t that far from where I stayed.

Only 6 minutes Uber ride to finally pay a visit for a cup of excellent cappuccino and eggs benedict served with Norwegian salmon for breakfast. I’m not a coffee connoisseur, I just love to enjoy a cup of good one and examine as much as I could which coffee tastes good. And I must confess the one I had at Truth was excellent.

Few things: You could have your coffee as early as 6 am on weekdays and 8 am on weekend // Don’t ever expect sugar (nothing!) cause that’s the best way to enjoy coffee // I suggest to come when it’s not packed with people (so you could enjoy yours by the window, no rush) // Take some photographs of the interior, the steampunk-vibe is distinct (I didn’t take that many :)).

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THE COFFEE ACADEMICS

– Hong Kong –


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I admit one of the reasons why I decided to visit Hong Kong this year was the coffee. I heard there are quite many good coffees. I repeat this, I visited some coffee shops when I was there not because I’m a coffee connoisseur nor for Instagram purpose. Although after I read a post on The Telegraph about Truth Coffee was listed as the first best coffee shop in the world and The Coffee Academics in Hong Kong was the second I made a promise, “Ok, I’ll pay a visit”.

It was an accidental visit if I might say. It was just a day before I flew back to a real life, I was lingered around Central for Friday prayer. Well, I didn’t pray on time cause I woke up a bit late, took a wrong bus from hostel and also, finding the mosque was tricky (Google map didn’t help me much). When I was a bit close to where the mosque’s located, I passed The Coffee Academics and believed it was a sign to pay my promise, huh?

After I came back from the mosque – I took a wrong way –  (and some uphill alleys made myself weak, think I should start accompanying Andreas for hiking, sometimes in the future *fingercrossed*) and ended with a cup of cappuccino and a slice of carrot cake. It’s written on my bio on this blog that I could die for a yummy buttery croissant, I’ll add this: a luscious carrot cake is on the second place.

Few things I remember: I never took any food for breakfast till late noon that day, so the carrot cake was the first meal (that wasn’t a good thing cause I walked a lot) // The Coffee Academics has several locations, if you are in Hong Kong you could browse the nearest location in case you want to pay a visit, their coffee is excellent // Although coffee in Hong Kong isn’t that cheap but it’s worth to try. I asked for Shaken Viennese after cappuccino and I was blithesome after. When I stood and found, “Oh, Vienna”, I sent a message to Andreas with those silly wishes (well I know he used to it :)). I just took it as a sign that someday I’ll visit Vienna, so why not to try when I was there, right? // If you look at one photograph below where you could see a guy standing with his phone, that was where I sat. I also love to do this when I travel: sitting with a coffee and enjoying the vibe surrounds me. It’s a busy street, and you know Hong Kong life is hectic, so looking at people walking by when I was having my coffee was an experience // When I wanted to bring my cup in, a lady who works there came and took it from my hand. She smiled and we started a conversation about the coffee, it was a short one but lovely. I know I also love to do that when I could talk with a stranger with some smiles in between.

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My Me – Time

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It is true what people say that we should enjoy our “me-time” after we have a long rough day…


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It is true by giving “me-time” shows that we love ourselves. For me, “me-time” could be watching a movie on the bed (I don’t care if I’ve watched it few times, such as Louisa Clark and Will Traynor’s love story) in a chilled room, with few soft throw pillows, a cup of hot tea I don’t mind for a wine honestly and a bowl of rosemary potato chips. Or, strolling around Omotesando with camera in hand in spring where cherry blossom is blooming, stop by some stores to pick some fashion items after having a cup of cappuccino (perhaps writing this sentence will bring me to Japan in spring, I’ll take it as a wish). A sentence before this’s such a real wish.

Having some pastries or cakes or just a cup of hot chocolate and a good book on the bed while the rain is pouring outside is such “me-time” for me too.

Black But Braun

 

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*.

This guy has finally arrived in my hand after I had back and forth follow-up with DHL UK cause it was at UK custom for almost a month (Amrick must be so patient listened to my complain on DHL UK twitter account :P but many thanks anyway).

I really had no plan before to add this on my wrist watch collection just because I had annoying moment few times when my debit VISA had been declined on my iTunes (I just received my new card then!). So on NYE, I did try to use it buying something online as suggested (how easy a lady on the customer service told me to try the card by buying something and I followed!) and chose this one as a NY gift for myself.

And it must be my mistake that I thought I chose black leather but brown arrived. Not bad tho I feel rose gold on brown is more appropriate to be worn for an evening occasion. Bottom line, sleek and clean design always has a place on me.

*


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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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Cereal Guide Book

I’m writing this post with zombie eyes and exhausted system on my body. Went for a challengingandcrazy set-up for an International event from Saturday night and came home 1 am on Monday morning. Four hours sleep doesn’t sound right cause I had to go for another project then. Fiuh.

Let me rush so I can have a sleep tonight. Lately, I’ve been enjoying doing an online shopping and couldn’t resist for some catchy songs from iTunes and these two handsome guys.

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It was on a lazy afternoon in the office I opened Cereal site without no reason. Just wanted to see some gorgeous photographs from those amazing photographers and ended by added stylish guys in my cart (I know I should add London as well :/). After two weeks (Easter holiday in UK made my order came a bit late) I finally had them in my hand. I was so excited but worry in the same time. Really, really beautiful guide book, clean and trendy lay-outs, beautiful photos of course, but the cover is so fragile. My hand must be clean before I surf the content :). Ah, I adore what Rich Stapleton and Rosalia Park do for Cereal, their attention to detail is on point (not to mention that both of them know Alice Gao in person :|).

Overall, I’m so happy could pamper myself by buying something that can train my eyes for beauties. I’m currently looking forward for another online shopping for some design and cook books, let me tell you, NOMA book is calling me.

Oh, you can check other city guides here.

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How dreamy those cities are.

These Buddies

There was an evening when I wanted to bring garlic and white onion home because I didn’t have any.

I passed an Indian market (from the name, you’ll easily predict that many Indians and Indian product available at this market) on my way home from the office. When I got those onions, I entered a small supermarket where I always stand for seconds just right after the entrance. There is a corner where they display plates, cups, and many kitchen stuff in affordable prices. I pretty remember that day I had to manage my monthly allowance but sadly, I couldn’t resist to bring home these buddies. Now, I should think how will I manage them in my suitcase when I’m going home for my annual leave.

Gah.

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GreyCups