Saturday, June 28, 2008

Flickr Pic #4: Shidare Zakura [しだれ桜]

Japan has a wide variety of sakura (cherry-blossoms) as many were hybridized or grafted by horticulturists centuries ago. --wikipedia

This photo was taken during the hanami (cherry blossom viewing) in early Spring with Astra peeps. Shown is the Shidarezakura or the weeping cherry, as it droops down like a weeping willow.

The popular pinkish sakuras are somewhat rare to find (at least for me) as white ones were the very common ones in the areas I have been to.

Location: Sakuragaoka-koen (park), Tokyo City

See Flickr post #3 (click link here)

posted by ScIoN 6:07 PM |

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Flickr Pic #3: Modern Meets Classic

Modern Meets Classic
Originally uploaded by scion_cho
I couldn't skip this since it is my 2nd most interesting shot (accdording to flickr).

A week before (or after?) the Chinese New Year, went to Japan's Chinatown in Yokohama with fellow TF photo hobbyists for a shoot (just came from the Akarenga outdoor ice skating rink).

Location: Chinatown [Chukagai], Yokohama City, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan

See Flickr post #2 (click link here)

posted by ScIoN 9:13 PM |

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Flickr Pic #2 : Steve n Seagulls

Steve n Seagulls
Originally uploaded by scion_cho
This pic is currently #1 in my photostream's list of interestingness (by flickr).

Took this shot within the Yamashita Park port area. Man in view, I think is some sort of a park attendant, attracting seagulls with some 'Oishi' crackers at hand.

This was also my very first major break-in for a month old D40x. Joined TF photo hobbyists as we walked from Yamashita Park -> Akarenga -> Chinatown.

Location: Yamashita Park port area, Yokohama City, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan

posted by ScIoN 9:19 PM |

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Flickr Blogging [1st entry: Crane-al Dome]

Crane-al Dome
Originally uploaded by scion_cho
Since Flickr has a 'Blog this' feature and I no longer have the time to write regularly for a blog (mostly are just cross postings from my multiply account), I have decided to try some sort of Photo blogging.

All pics would come from my flickr account, of course. Since I still don't have a pro account and there is a 100MB limit per month, I usually upload in batches of 5. Perhaps every time I upload, I'd feature 1 of each batch.

For my first entry, I am featuring this 'Crane-al Dome'. This is the most conspicuous landmark nearest to our apartment (although you still have to walk about 5 minutes more). This can be located coming from Kasukabe train station's East exit, about 3 minutes away.

Location: Kasukabe station East exit, Kasukabe City, Saitama, Japan

posted by ScIoN 12:15 PM |

Friday, June 13, 2008

Fuji-Kyuu Highlands

My first and only amusement park experience in a long time was during high school (@Boom na Boom Carnival ... LOL) when I accompanied my Grandma to Manila. (She was planning to meet another Chinese family and try to play matchmaker for my up to now bachelor Uncle). Never have been to Disney Tokyo yet, not even Enchanted Kingdom in the Philippines. And so, after about 10 years (literally) the long wait was over!

Fuji-Q Highland is located in Yamanashi, Japan; near the base of Mount Fuji. It's a less-than-2-hour-ride by bus coming from Shinjuku. It houses some of the tallest and fastest rollercoasters in the world.

Our first ride was the Fujiyama. This is by far the scariest ride I have been to, being once the world's tallest rollercoaster (1996); also the first 'hyper-twister'. What scared the hell out of me was the 235 feet drop in which I was holding tightly on the bars prompting myself to face the drop head on. Later did I realize (when we rode for the 2nd time) that raising hands while on a drop makes sense as it enables you to enjoy the freefall, compared to embracing it face down.

Next ride was the Eejanaika! This is classified as a 4th-dimension rollercoaster. Aside from the usual above/below/sideways loop, the seats also rotate vertically; thus, giving you a '4d' perspective. This is actually my favorite ride, and I love the part where the seats turn vertically backward and you have no choice but to see the world upside down... which is actually cool. But when the seats turn vertically forward, there goes the goosebumps again. This is really a fun ride, too bad it's a bit short/fast.

On the early days of the week, weather forecasts pointed out the high probability of rain (80%) for the Sunday outing. Good thing, eventually nobody backed out as it just drizzled a bit, and that was when we were in the Dodonpa, a former world fastest rollercoaster (2001, when it was built).

Geoff and I were in the front seats as we have to embrace the needle-like rain drops at high speed. After having gone through the first 2 rides, this was just a breeze. Aside from Dodonpa's speed, I guess another thing that makes it popular is its 'catchy' (or racy?) medley while waiting on queue. Imagine hearing 'dodonpahhhh...' again and again as if hearing 2 lovers whispering in their bedroom voices (and in different language versions or perhaps in a 'The Sims' like conversation).

The next ride was just more of a splashing event. One good thing about having a 'bad weather forecast' for the week was that, in effect, only a few would pursue to come. Consequently, less queue per ride. The longest queue we had probably reached only for an hour, as compared to the what we've heard that sometimes it can take 2-3 hours to wait in line for a less than 3 minute ride.

After eating lunch, we went to the 'haunted hospital'. Entrance fee isn't included in the 1-day free pass, so we had to pay 500yen (~200Php) for this. We had to regroup ourselves because only a max of 6 people were allowed inside at a time. I eventually joined an 'all male cast' and the first ones to go inside. The place was indeed creepy, but the main point of haunted houses are to give those sudden frights eventually leading to a scare.

For the 4 of us trying hard to keep our 'male pride' intact, we anticipated every move, searched every possible fright corner before slowly treading the only path. There were a few frights encountered but soon enough our overanticipation killed the excitement. We even noticed that the resident actors were more keen in scaring groups having female members rather than a group of guys swearing in their native tongue. And for the last part, the resident ghost chased us out towards the exit, losing his momentum, eventually revealing himself outside towards the waiting crowd.

The 7100yen trip (1-day free pass + bus roundtrip ticket) was really worth it since we were able to maximize the cost of rides. 2x-Fujiyama, 2x-Eejanaika, 1x-Dodonpa, 2x-Zaboon, 1x- gundam crisis, go cart, etc. It's just too bad that it was a Sunday as I have to go to work the next day, leading to a tired and restless week.

Another fun trip with the 'Kaladkaran' group! :P (failed to blog about the Nikko trip, but at least there're pictures )

posted by ScIoN 8:57 PM |

My Photo
Location: Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines

ScIoN is a former Systems Engineer in Japan who specialized in industrial imaging and digital hardware design. He is now back in the Philippines pursuing graduate studies in Finance at the University of the Philippines - Diliman.



|Argel| |Charity| |Cholle| |Danes| |Dean| |Det| |Dyan| |Elma| |Fil| |Jeric| |Joe A.| |Kir| |Liz| |May| |May & Glenn| |Nino| |Norman| |PaU| |Rex| |Islander| |Yugs|


Recent Posts

Flickr Pic #128: [Showa Kinen] Yellow Bed
Flickr Pic #127: [Showa Kinen] Hello, Idea
Flickr Pic #126: [Kanamara Matsuri] Lady
Flickr Pic #125: [Kanamara Matsuri] Lady in Pink
Flickr Pic #124: [Kanamara Matsuri] For Sale
Flickr Pic #123: [Kanamara Matsuri] Demure
Flickr Pic #122: Sakura 2009
Flickr Pic #121: [Kanamara Matsuri] Say Aaah!
Flickr Pic #119: [Shibuya] Fuji TV
Flickr Pic #118: [Shibuya] Lost in Thoughts


July 2005
August 2005
September 2005
October 2005
November 2005
December 2005
January 2006
February 2006
March 2006
April 2006
May 2006
June 2006
July 2006
August 2006
September 2006
October 2006
November 2006
December 2006
January 2007
February 2007
March 2007
April 2007
May 2007
June 2007
July 2007
August 2007
September 2007
October 2007
November 2007
December 2007
January 2008
February 2008
March 2008
May 2008
June 2008
July 2008
August 2008
September 2008
October 2008
November 2008
December 2008
January 2009
February 2009
March 2009
April 2009
June 2009
July 2009
August 2009
September 2009


[Powered by Blogger]