Also, I come from a third world country so Japan was pretty impressive. If you aren't as impressed, I'm sorry but everything was AWESOME for me and I am seriously considering moving to Japan now even if I don't speak the language or have a viable job waiting. So as promised to catteo, behold, my favourite lyrics from 1989 and some photos from Japan.
But i had an entire list to get through so after going through the entire park, I walked back to the hotel to check in and discover the rest of Osaka.
Instead I walked around aimlessly, trying to understand the google maps I painstakingly planned ahead of time and walking through walkways covered and sting like shopping arcades that last for blocks on blocks. Finally, I got tired of walking and had a very late lunch at a random restaurant that had an oyakodon. It also happened to be the cheapest meal I found.
After chilling in the hotel for a couple hours in the afternoon -- i was so tired -- i ventured out again and made it my mission to find the Ferris Wheel on top of a mall (HEP 5). I found it and rode it and was terrified the entire time. I'm pretty scared of heights, so I'm not sure why I keep subjecting myself to this. It was a nice view of Osaka at night.
As I walked around that night -- looking for the Umeda Sky Garden (and seeing it from afar but being too tired to walk all the way), I end up at this shopping arcade that had a really pretty outdoor staircase and lighting. Gorgeous.
Also abundant, arcades and though I'm not a big player, they have ALL sorts of arcade games. I know no one ever wins these catchers but they have the best giveaways.
That evening, after not having spoken to anyone in English for 2.5 days, I decided to go find an Irish bar where I find a bunch of English/Irish grandpas speaking English. Hurrah! They were very nice to me and broached the idea of teaching English in Japan. I didn't realise this was possible as I speak no Japanese. But apparently, it's totally normal. Going to a bar is a feat for me, so the fact that I dragged myself out of the hotel and to a bar and talked to the folks there is a HUGE deal. Look at me, all grown up.
The line to Spiderman was 2 hours long and it was like a 3-minute ride. But then I discovered the 'single-rider' pass and since I was alone, I got to skip all the long lines and just got inserted when there were odd numbered groups riding an even number car. Not bad. Plus I got to visit other sections of the park. It was my first time in any Universal Studios, after all. I know, I'm so lame.
But really, the Hogwarts castle was beautiful and I took a bazillion photos of it from every possible angle with my phone because I just wanted to cement the memory in my head. The line for the Forbidden Journey ride was terribly long too, but at this point, I was quite numb to lines already. Sure, the characters spoke in Japanese but it was pretty fun.
It's funny because I honestly thought that Kyoto would be very Memoirs of a Geisha-esque which is funny because obviously Kyoto has modernised since then and still that's what i had in mind. No wonder other foreigners think the Philippines is still a bunch of nipa huts. But I digress, the more 'rural' Kyoto is so modern already but definitely not at par with Osaka or Tokyo and therein lies its charm.
And when you reach the top of the mountain, there's a shrine but it wasn't much for me. It was more beautiful at the 'scenic' view 3/4 up the mountain but not bad. I'm glad we did it, but boy was I tired. There was an old man that pointed out the sign that said 'top of the mountain' to us because I really couldn't believe we were there already. Their map was shockingly misleading and definitely not to scale which is weird. But we just laughed it off in between gasps of breath.
And yes, we ate that massive noodle pancake thing on the right. It was stuffing and heavy and rich and so un-very Japanese but it was very very good. I don't think I've tasted this kind of Japanese food and I've eaten quite a bit so it was nice to have something new.
We went around Gion at night and that's where the Kyoto in my mind could be found. We saw legit geishas walking and there were really picturesque scenery. My sister almost rented out a kimono but it was a little too expensive for just an hour's worth -- since the day was almost done. Instead we snacked at this really artsy cafe and the owner's dog kept on coming over to us. He was obviously, adorable.
It's nice because if it weren't for Jenny and Roy, we totally wouldn't have gone to a bar on our first night Tokyo. My sister and I aren't necessarily bar people so it was lovely to be taken out of our usual comfort zone and meeting new folk even if just for a bit in Tokyo.
I ended up walking around the Omotesando area and it's like the major shopping road for Tokyo. All the foreign designer brands were there in really amazing buildings with modern architecture. I didn't get to take a lot of photos because i was busy window shopping and there were so many people. Instead, I found a nice coffee place that was so hidden and so hard to find, I'm shocked they're doing well.
And of course, you can't visit Shibuya without seeing Hachiko. No, I'm still not going to watch the movie. It just makes me sad thinking of it. Hachiko will be the place I meet up with everyone moving forward because it's the easiest and most accessible land mark to find.
I end up walking to the 21/21 Design Museum which was still closed by the time I got there (I swear I was incredibly early) and then headed to the National Art Center which I technically didn't really see any exhibitions but the building was so beautiful and their museum store was so pretty if not expensive. I wish I could have eaten at the cafe but there were other things to do.
I met up with one of the folks we met at the bar the other night and we went to eat at the market before heading to Ueno Park which is waaay across the other end of Tokyo but definitely worth a visit. With the massive ponds and lots of greenery, it was a nice place to spend the afternoon. Plus, they had some stuff going on that night so there we booths all lit up.
Instead I headed to Iidabashi to see the really pretty koshikawa kōrakuen garden. I didn't think I'd be so into gardens but the Japanese know how to do a garden or a park and I found myself just sitting near the pond (listening to all the slow songs on Taylor's album) and just chilling. It was a nice reprieve from all the walking.
Afterwards, we headed to Ginza which was a nice closed off street that had the flagship store of Uniqlo. And though we already have this in Manila, it's still nice to visit the flagship store. It's so beautiful! 11 floors of amazing basics. I wish I were loaded, I would have bought the place out.
In the evening, we stopped by the Tokyo International Forum just because the interiors are so beautiful. I love a good modern architectural feat and this one is listed in Lonely Planet for a reason. It's just jaw-dropping-ly pretty. Just google it because my photo on the right doesn't do it justice.
Japan is seriously amazing and I definitely want to go back one day -- when I'm way richer than I was. It's possible to go on a budget but everything is just tempting, you'll want to spend more. I'm so glad I finally got to go.
And now we move on to the amazing album that was 1989. At first, I only liked 85% of the album, but after multiple repeats -- in Japan and even when I got home, how could I not fall in love with the entire album??? Please stop being awesome to my ears, Taylor. I need to give everyone else in my library a chance.
I wish I lived in New York. There's no doubt about that, and this song made me want to pack my bags and forcibly enter NYC regardless of my visa not being the proper one.
Took our broken hearts, put them in a drawerOf course, every NYC fantasy involves best girlfriends, dancing in streets and meeting boys. I've been to NYC twice in my life and I've experience 1 out of 3. I want to experience Taylor's NYC and this song totally makes me want to do that.
Everybody here was someone else before
And you can want who you want
It's a new soundtrack
I could dance to this beat
The lights are so bright
But they never blind me
Clearly my favourite song off the album on first listen, I'm over the moon it became the second single because I listened to this WAY too many times as I walked around. And though the video is brilliant, it definitely wasn't what I had in mind when I listened to the song. I choose to think of the happier times before it all goes to shit.
So hey, let's be friendsI love this thought of just jumping into love and not knowing the outcome. Obviously, I am not this kind of person and I like knowing exactly how things end, so this song is such a fantasy/achievement for me to unlock -- minus the craziness.
I'm dying to see how this one ends
Grab your passport and my hand
I can make the bad guys good for a weekend
'Cause we're young and we're reckless
We'll take this way too far
It'll leave you breathless
Or with a nasty scar
This song breaks my heart in the best way possible just because I don't blame her for finding out the truth and just not caring -- or 'feeling' for him because she's been in the same place. Taylor, why must we hurt ourselves and empathise this way!
He says, "What you've heard is true but IAnd true enough, they keep going round in circles and repeating the same mistakes and it must be such an addictive feeling to keep wanting to crash down every time.
Can't stop thinking about you," and I...
I said, "I've been there too a few times."
And when we go crashing down, we come back every time
'Cause we never go out of style
We never go out of style.
I'll admit this wasn't my favourite song at first, when Taylor released the full song as a teaser but I just wasn't feeling it. And then I listened to it with the entire album and fell in love with it. The lyrics are cryptic but they're beautiful and I love dancing (cue: All the Well's dancing by the refrigerator light)
Your necklace hanging from my neckThe bridge though is my favourite and I think I read that searchtheskies loves it too and with reason. I love the part where the sun comes up and they were looking at each other. Oh to be in that situation.
The night we couldn't quite forget
When we decided (we decided)
To move the furniture so we could dance,
Baby, like we stood a chance
Two paper airplanes flying, flying, flying
And I remember thinkin'
Remember when we couldn't take the heat
I walked out and said, "I'm settin' you free,"
But the monsters turned out to be just trees
And when the sun came up, you were lookin' at me
I wouldn't want to be left behind and to feel these feelings but I like that she's able to tell the person that it's all they had to do and they couldn't even do it. It's a very blame-y song but come on, you just got left behind, i can't fault her.
Here you are now, calling me up, but I don't know what to sayThis is the happiest bitter song ever or at least the happiest sounding even if the lyrics are all pointing fingers and all. The blame games hasn't sounded this good and upbeat.
I've been picking up the pieces of the mess you made
People like you always want back the love they pushed aside
But people like me are gone forever when you say goodbye
Let me remind
You this was what you wanted
You ended it
You were all I wanted
But not like this
Shockingly, this song suddenly pales to the rest of the album even if I love it and it holds a special place in my heart. I get why it's the first single to introduce her new style and the video is adorable but I guess it's what i relate to least, just because I'm not popular enough to have haters -- or haters that I know of.
I'm dancing on my own (dancing on my own)But any time Taylor mentions a fella, with hella good hair, you know i"m listening. I swear, to find a fella and one with good hair. Some girls have all the luck.
I make the moves up as I go (moves up as I go)
And that's what they don't know
And to the fella over there with the hella good hair
Won't you come on over, baby? We can shake, shake, shake
Now is the sort of acceptance phase after the blaming and it's nice that she's just remembering and being all nostalgic still with some pining and longing but not so aggressive and or at least I don't feel it that way. Again, I love how peppy this song is. I swear, pop is suiting her so well.
I wish we could go backWishes, we can keep on wishing. God knows I've done my share of it and that's why I love this song, because there are so many 'what ifs' and 'if onlys' and yet, she's still able to move on in a way. I hope I can produce this much material during a heartbreak. Not that I want a heartbreak.
And remember what we were fighting for.
And I wish you knew that I miss you too much to be mad anymore.
And I wish you were right here, right now, it's all good.
I wish you would
You always knew how to push my buttons
You give me everything and nothing
This mad mad love makes you come running
To stand back where you stood
I wish you would, I wish you would
Definitely not my most favourite song on the album at first listen, it feels very rah-rah-rally against something and it reminded me of Hollaback Girl for some reason. After a couple listens though, I totally feel like doing some cardio to it.
Did you think it all through? All these things will catch up to youAnd luckily, I haven't gotten into any girl fights so I won't have to relate to this soon but it sucks that we have to go through this drama. I say no to girl drama. Let's all just be friends.
And time can heal but this won't, so if you’re coming my way just don’t
Oh, it’s so sad to think about the good times, you and I
Band-aids don’t fix bullet holes
You say sorry just for show
If you live like that you live with ghosts
If you love like that blood runs cold
This one crept on me and if it weren't for lusimeles, I wouldn't have realised it was a very Lana del rey tune. But regardless of the inspiration, I really did grow to love the lyrics and the song and the style of it. And of course, the feels.
He's so tall and handsome as hellIt's really bittersweet to ask this of someone just because there's an end to something but at least it's a nice memory to remember you by and I definitely found myself repeating this one just because.
He's so bad but he does it so well
And when we've had our very last kiss
My last request is
Say you'll remember me standing in a nice dress,
Staring at the sunset, babe
Red lips and rosy cheeks
Say you'll see me again
Even if it's just in your wildest dreams
Though half the lyrics don't make sense, it still is such a fun song and the chorus has me all 'aww-ing' over it. A little optimistic and a little too hopeful but hey, one can't lose hope and just be negative.
I want you for worse or for better,I love this reminiscing part. Taylor really has a way of being all narate-y about things and i guess it's her 'country' background so I always like these little vignettes she writes about. Pictures on frames and Kisses on cheeks? Yes, please.
I would wait forever and ever,
Broke your heart, I'll put it back together.
I would wait forever and ever.
Remind me how it used to be.
Pictures in frames of kisses on cheeks.
And say you want me.
Other than Clean, this was one of the slow songs that really stuck out to me right away and though I wish I had a love to speak of, this one sounds pretty intense and tragic. The sadness of it is quite horrible but the melody is so pretty it lulls you into a false sense of ease.
Tossing, turning, struggled through the night with someone newAnd though I don't think it ends well, I'm in a little capsule of denial wherein all pretty sounding songs end happily. I know, leave me be in this little bubble of safety I've created.He comes back, right???
And I could go on and on, on and on
Lantern burning, flickered in my mind for only you
But you're still gone, gone, gone
Your kiss, my cheek, I watched you leave
Your smile, my ghost, I fell to my knees
When you're young you just run
But you come back to what you need
To be honest, the foxes and hunters metaphor really made me laugh at first but then it grew on me with it's Lorde-sque influences and before I knew it, I was chanting along to every line. And anything with 'grabbing hands' and holding hands is A+ for me.
Just grab my hand and don't ever drop itI'd love to know places where one can hide, hopefully with someone to hide with. And so you see the theme of all these songs and my feelings. They're awesome in concept but better in practice if there was someone to pine over.
They are the hunters, we are the foxes
And we run
Baby, I know places we won't be found
And they'll be chasing their tails tryin' to track us down
Cause I, I know places we can hide
I know places
I could listen to this song over and over and over again and I wish there were more of Imogen Heap because I quite miss her music. It's such a nice and positive-ish ending to the album knowing that she'll be okay after all. Still, quite sad how she got there.
There was nothing left to doThe bridge of her songs usually kill me and this isn't any different. 10 months to get sober and to get older and hopefully we learn our lessons. Now let's try to move on.
When the butterflies turned to dust that covered my whole room
So I punched a hole in the roof
Let the flood carry away all my pictures of you
10 months sober, I must admit
Just because you're clean don't mean you don't miss it
10 months older, I won't give in
Now that I'm clean I'm never gonna risk it
Thanks for sitting through the craziness that was this entry. I didn't realise how massive it was going to get. Until the next time I visit Japan or when Taylor releases another album.