0

Food Review : 100 Spoons Futakotamagawa

Hello everyone, I hope you have good weekend!

This weekend, I went to a new restaurant in Futakotamagawa (located close to the 109 Cinemas) called 100 Spoons (100本のスプーン).

You can see the detailed explanation of this restaurant in their official website here.

What made me interested with this restaurant is actually their unique menu which is called “Little big plates”

IMG_7057.jpg

Little big plates

Yes, as depicted by its name this dish contain of mini dishes (in total 10 dishes mixed) from appetizer until dessert. The price is 1980 JPY.  Let me explain about the content one by one (please note that the content might change due to the season, this version is Autumn-Winter 2018 version)

Appetizers

  • Shrimp bisque and french bread rolls (shrimp bisque tastes nice, although the bread roll is a little hard it will be better if you dunk it inside the bisque)
  • Stir-fry fusilli with green veggies (it is a little bit bland to be honest)
  • Marinated salmon and potato salad (very refreshing!)
  • Garden salad with balsamic vinegar and parmesan (standard)
  • Mushroom bruschetta (standard)

Main dish

  • Fried-potato (as a potato lover, this disappointed me a lot 😦 I understand that they make their own fried-potato (not a frozen-package) but they just did not fry it well. It is not cruncy and very dry, and lack of salt)
  • Hamburg Steak with Demi Glace Sauce (it is located in a little teppan, covered in foil. To be honest it tasted really really good! The steak was chewy and demi glace sauce tastes very rich. There is also moisture inside because I think they combined the cooking technique with steaming!)
  • Chicken curry with rice (standard)

Dessert

  • (they said it is) Tiramisu (i really do not know what cake it is. Yes it got a little bit of dash of mascarpone and coffee powder on top, but also with berry sauce and berry chunks? Maybe this is meant to be a berry tiramisu, but i really still like the classical tiramisu better)

IMG_7058

Well, it looks like a lot of food, but actually it is not. Especially when you are sharing. We also ordered Hamburg Steak with Gravy which also tasted excellent.

So, tips from me if you go here : do order only their beef-related dishes since they are excellent!

 

Another thing which is cute about this restaurant is they provide coloring paper in the first page of menu book and colored pencil, so me and my boyfriend went crazy coloring! 🙂

Also, they have relaxing atmosphere and open-kitchen with friendly chefs that will smile when you take their photo!

 

So I guess, I will visit again sometimes if I go to Futakotamagawa.

 

That’s it for tonight guys!

 

With loads of love,

 

 

Afifa

Advertisements
0

Review : Setia Darma House of Mask and Puppets

Hello everyone!

How are you? I have just finished my 2 weeks summer holiday in Indonesia and it was really fun! I went to Bali for 4 days (staying in Ubud and Kuta, so that I can enjoy both mountain and beach atmosphere).

I would like to divide my experience in Bali into 2 parts. I would like to share about my experience visiting Setia Darma House of Mask and Puppet in Ubud, and reviewing about two new hotels I’ve been to this holiday.

 

So let’s get started!

 

General information

Setia Darma House of Mask and Puppet is located in Ubud area, Bali, around 10 minutes drive from the city center.

Address : Jalan Tegal Bingin, Mas, Ubud, Kemenuh, Gianyar Sub-District, Gianyar, Bali 80582, Indonesia

Phone : +62 361 8987493

Open daily from 8 AM to 4 PM

Admission fee : free (but I recommend you to give donation, since this place is really nice and informative)

 

In my opinion, this place is such a hidden jewel. The collections are extensive consisting of several Indonesian traditional houses (not only from Bali) fully packed with masks and puppets collection. You will not only be able to see masks and puppets collection from Indonesia, but also several selected collections from overseas. Not only from neighboring southeast Asian or Asian country, you can even see puppet from Italy.

IMG_6909

Traditional houses where they display the collection of masks and puppets

Service

Despite of its excellent collection, I do not think this place attracts many tourists yet (especially local tourist). When my family arrived there, we are the only guests there. A guide guided use from one house to the other and he explains really well about the collection. I am also impressed about the cleanliness of the facility. When we arrived there we spot at least 5 staffs are cleaning the garden and area. Washroom is also exceptionally clean!

One café and one souvenir shop is also available. In the souvenir shop you can get a really good mask miniature (for around 20 USD, the quality is really good)

 

A little bit more about the collection

Since I am actually not artsy at all, I will only explain some collections that I can understand.

  • Barong collections

They have barong collections from all over Indonesia. From the guide, I was told that actually barong has a good role in the folklore (although in my perspective it looks scary like a monster). Barong looks scary because he is a lion-like creature.

IMG_6610

Barong collection from all over Indonesia

The next picture is the barong from Bali area (located in the middle), the one on his left and right side are the enemies called Rangda, she is a female witch. We can see this set usually in Kecak dance performance.

IMG_6914

Bali barong! middle is the barong, left and right side is his enemy

  • One sad story called Barong Landung  : a story about Chinese princess who married a Balinese king. The king, however, ask The Gods of Batur to look for a women that can deliver his heir. He lied about his marital status however, condemning himself and the Chinese princess to be barong 😦

 

  • Shadow puppets, from all over Indonesia as well as other country. The one that I show here is from Indonesia and China.
  • Chinese string puppets and finger puppets
  • Extensive collections of masks, the one that I took the picture is from China, Japan, and Indonesia

IMG_6911

  • Other puppets collections

IMG_6912

  • One Japanese artist also donated Noh (classical Japanese drama) masks (sorry, i do not have the picture)
  • Wayang beber collection (where the story is told based on scroll-paint presentation (sorry, i do not have the picture)

 

In overall, I really recommend you to visit this museum!

This museum really tries to preserve the beauty heritage of Indonesian masks and puppets. Make sure you do visit this museum next time you go to Bali and spread the news! 🙂

 

With a lot of love,

Afifa

 

 

 

0

Gordon Research Conference in a Glance

Hello all!

It’s just after typhoon number 12 here now in Japan, and it has been approximately 2 weeks after I went back from my academic honeymoon this year. So yes! *drumroll* finally I’ve got the chance to attend the conference I’ve been dreaming of since my first year of doctoral degree.

Gordon Research Conference – Frontiers of Science : Biocatalysis 🙂

So how what makes this conference so special?

It is a science concentration camp (in a good way of course)

The biocatalysis one is held every 2 years in Maine, USA. Different than other conferences that I have ever been to this conference is always located in a remote area. It was 2 hours bus-ride from Boston and practically there is nothing there (except the super pretty scenery!). Kudos to them for their aim to make the participant pretty much focus on the conference. We slept in the same dorm, eat 3 meals a day together, had sport activities during free time together, basically everything together! Indeed it is a science concentration camp, lol!

But let’s take a look! This concentration camp is really beautiful (The University of New England with its beautiful red-brick architecture is just located beside Biddeford Pool, beach, and Atlantic Ocean)

There is also so many delicious food everyday. And…. LOBSTER! LOL. And sometimes rice, I cannot live without rice…..

It is indeed, overwhelming (again, in a good way)

But well, yes, it is a little overwhelming (in a good way of course). Meeting faces you only read in the journal article. Seeing them presenting and really talking to them. (this year I finally met the author that I’ve been fan-girl-ing since 2015, Professor Musa M. Musa).

The sessions were not too long but the cutting-edge science inside it? It is quite overwhelming and sometimes could be heavy. Everyone is presenting the best research/technology/innovation in their field! It is like a biocatalysis all you can eat. Any enzyme you need? any new technique you’ve been curious about? any reaction? anything you want, you will find it in Gordon!

But i cannot deny, it is really tiring (at least for me). For me to be sober and to be able to take good notes on the next day, I have to skip the bar session every night. Nevermind, I do not drink alcohol as well 🙂

It is secretive, somehow exclusive

Researcher got to present their cutting-edge unpublished data here, so yes, no picture and no uploading to social media. The Gordon principle also lies on not trying to copy the idea you have learned or heard from here.  Yes secretive.

But you also have the chance to talk directly to those popular professors, and scientists. I got a lot of chance to talk with my idols, not a chance that you will have everyday. Indeed it is somehow exclusive.

By the way, I also attended the Gordon Research Seminar one day prior to the Conference. It is an excellent melting pot for young scientists to discuss their career path. The participants are mainly graduate students, post-doctoral research, and early career researcher. We also had a mentorship session with experts in many fields (also with many backgrounds, i.e : people going from academia then to industry or people going back to academia from industry). It was a very very nice experience for me!

IMG_5436

Participants of Gordon Research Seminar, just a day before Gordon Research Conference

IMG_5465

Matsuda Research Group in Gordon Research Conference

It made me feel worthy

Sometimes when you are in a cramped space (although you love that space too much) you will somehow limit and compare yourself in the sample size as small as that particular space. I am just meticulous old-fashioned me who like to draw with colored felt pen, put a lot of sticker in the experiment book cover, and personify my enzymes.

I am definitely not gonna achieve as lot as my Doctoral student peers in my lab, well, that is the reality that I have accepted. But in Gordon, somehow I feel more alive and worthy.

I asked questions in forum. Maybe my questions was stupid, but I still raise my hand everyday. Seeing how the professors respond me or how some people got to remember me because of me asking questions everyday definitely boosted my confident.

There was a mentorship session also in the conference. I got a one-to-one session with a female Professor from UK. She is really sweet and charming and of course super witty. Based on our sharing she valued me as a girl that had courage to learn crystallography despite of her originally microbiology background. She said that i should not feel down not having gazillions of publication. One solid publication is OK, one publication that can really explain what you are doing. There is nothing to be ashamed of 🙂 The conversation is too sweet.

So here I am now, home from Gordon.

I know I am pumped up because of this. I am excited because of this. I realize that science is really an interesting thing because of this.

But you know? I have to give a big thumbs up to myself because actually I am always feeling like this right? I love doing research just because I love doing it 🙂 I just need confidence boost to keep on doing this. I just need some confidence for me to think that it is okay to keep going on although slowly and not as good as other people.

Ok, so next will be Doctoral progress report. and next destination will be… Russia! ❤

I will participate in a short term student dispatch to Moscow State University next September as one of the Tokyo Tech’s participant. I am thrilled because this might be my last exchange opportunity as a student. Next October I will already be doctoral third year student. Probably will be my last year of formal education.

It’s been (let me count…) almost 23 years of non-stop studying. Fruitful years with many ups and downs :’) But what can i say? I love science and study so much 🙂

So no matter what your research level are, don’t give up and keep on going!

Love

Afifa

0

Goodbye 2017, Hello 2018

Hello good people!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

Today is the last day of winter holiday. I really just want to spend it lazily. Well, we (me and Mas Yu) will have afternoon tea double date together with my bestfriend and her husband 🙂 But; in the morning I am free, I almost finished my abstract for March conference so I decide to wake up late and spend the morning writing about 2017. A dramatic year full of drama, I guess. What happened in 2017? Let me just give me a quick review!

 

2017 started with mega drama number one. Since everything is over now and I have made peace with the main actor, I really cannot mention the content of the drama here (however, I have a little review about that here).

That time everything was quite blurred I guess. I would not make it without my best friend and in total four times visit from my parent and my sister. During spring and summer, I had a little stolen holiday to Kyoto and Osaka, as well as Izu and Nagoya with good friends.

 

In terms of academic, actually nothing changed much. I am right now Doctoral Second year student, first semester. This year I managed to attend 3 conferences (2 national (Chemical Society of Japan and Biocatalysis Symposium) and 1 international, Biotrans at Hungary). I also try to speak about science in Science なう event! I also found myself a new interesting topic about synthesizing drug derivatives.

In lab? It is getting more complicated but still very fun, as one of the oldest right now I have 12 kouhai in total with 2 directly under my supervision. Challenging but still happy! I wish we all can do research with love and dedication, and I can somehow be a good role model 🙂

My focus next year will be more of computational study (crystal structure refinement) and docking study; plus writing my publication! I will have to start thinking as well about my future career, meaning searching for a faculty position or post-doctoral position in Japanese university.

 

This year I tried also to post more on my youtube channel and do vlogging (which I found to be quite fun!). I know what I am doing in youtube is not that “trending” or so called eye-catching, I am just doing it for fun (but with my heart into it). Ah, I also learn to wear hijab more often, trying to incorporate it with my own style 🙂

IMG_8717

All of these things happened together with mega drama number two and mega drama number three. Really cannot mention the content of the mega drama number two however I have a little snippet here and there. I guess I am quite content with the problem solving of mega drama number two right now.

 

And mega drama number three? Finally I am completely releasing myself from my toxic love relationship for 4 years! Here is the snippet, yes, Mas Yu found me 😀 together with wonderful friends from Kanagawa International Student Music Festival!!

 

although we are so far away from settling down. We need gazillion works to be done to face our huge barriers. But to be honest, I am completely at peace. We learn something new everyday, kudos for him for his patience and willingness to learn.

 

In the end, I wrap up this year with a peaceful state of mind.

What are the keys?

 

  1. Self acceptance

I am accepting myself right now, I am not the smartest and I am slow at doing things. But whatever, I keep moving forward slowly everyday. I mean, my dear family, bf, and best friends, they are all able to accept me with my strength and especially, weakness. Why should I be reluctant to accept myself?

  1. Not trying to please everyone

I learned the hard way this year no matter how hard you try to make someone like you; they will not do that if they do not feel that way! So don’t try to please people, be yourself. They will love you if they love you.

  1. Listen and care only to those who really love you

Not all things should be heard and be put into the deepest core of our heart. Follow your heart, listen only to those who matters the most.

Critic will always come to your life. If they come and bother you, just ask yourself two questions. 1) Have I put my heart while doing it? Have I done my best? 2) Do I have good intention on doing this? If the answers are yes, just proceed. It’s the right thing for you.

(Yu, 2017)

Actually actually, those beautiful words in point number 1 to 3 is not mine. I should put some reference…. thank you Yu Teguh golden ways, lol.

 

 

So that is all for my 2017.

I do not have big and detailed resolution for 2018. I am only taking baby steps cherishing everyday and be grateful to Allah for all of His blessings.

Well, I have to publish a paper and search for job this year, hopefully postdoc or academic position in Japan. These are the only focus.

 

Goodbye, 2017.

IMG_1007

Bismillahirrahmanirrahim welcome 2018 ❤

 

 

With loads of love,

 

Afifa Ayu Koesoema

0

Kyoto 2016 : Maiko Dress-up Experience

Hello! Really long time no see :3

I was really busy with my research lately, but this week I have a “legal spare time, lol. I will attend a the annual meeting of Chemical Society of Japan in Kyoto, and since I have morning presentation I can go the day before. Since conference has not started yet today, so I have the opportunity to stroll around!

 

Because i have visited most of the notable temples in Kyoto.

This time I will only want to treat myself with a… Maiko Dress-up Experience! ❤

IMG_2119

*that was me, really

 

In case you want to try the same experience with me, I will give you explanation in detail!

 

What is Maiko and Why?

Maiko is a women that perform dance, sings and traditional instrument for visitors during feast. Maiko is the apprentice geiko and usually aged 15-20 years.

Their appearance is always very beautiful to me, all white make-up with a detail of red and pink. Beautiful hair style with enchanting hairpiece and of course the kimono! ❤

Right now in Kyoto, there are many shops that offer Maiko Dressing-up Experience for tourists. So that is why, right now it is very common for normal people to have one day experience dress-up as a Maiko.

 

Okay, so how do you select the right shop?

The shop that i chose is Maica. in Gion, Kyoto Basically I just typed “Maiko dress-up in Kyoto” using google and found this shop. The website has quite good English explanation and prices are also reasonable. They have variety of package so that you can choose which one suits your budget the most.

The package that i chose is “Okigaru” Plan, right now on sale for 6500 JPY (excluding tax). This package cover make-up, hair, kimono rental, wig rental (you can only choose whole wig), hair accessories rental, one studio photograph (printed in B5 size), and one hour of free photo time inside the house.

If you want to do longer, they also have package including walking outside (Gion area) or even guided tour to farther temple, but it also comes with higher price.

 

 

Sequences?

It is actually described well here, but I will just retell you my own version.

Upon arrival we will have to fill a short form (it has English, don’t worry, generally all staffs can speak English quite well!). We will be given plastic bag for our shoes and we are escorted to the third floor. Photography is forbidden at third floor and during make-up and dressing-up process 😦

First thing is kimono selection, although Okigaru plan has limited kimono selection, it is still all very beautiful for me. After that, we have to pay (please note purchase under 10.000 JPY has to be paid in cash). We will then be escorted to the second floor where we have to put all of our camera-related thing in a safety deposit box. After that we will go to the locker room to store our other belongings and change to kimono inner wear and room socks. *we have to pay 200 JPY for the locker

Then… make-up time (which was fast, they just paint our face white with little pink and red detail). Honestly it was really thrilling because they don’t put MIRROR in the make-up room! After make-up then wig placement, which was… heavy, really heavy. And finally, kimono!! There were so many layers, so so so so many and they just keep tightening it more and more 😦

IMG_1962

Tada! Suddenly I transformed into Maiko!

And after that, photo time! One studio photograph was taken and if you come alone (like me) the staffs will help us to take picture (Up to 5 pictures). Other than that we can just explore the house by ourselves and selfie stick is allowed. Although it is small, almost every parts of the house are beautiful with classic Japanese decoration.

IMG_2111

Full body picture with the help of the staff

IMG_2106

Beautiful neck detail

IMG_2109

Tea ceremony, one of my most favorite picture!

IMG_2415

The studio photograph 🙂

Oh, i forget to mention that you can wear contact-lenses for the make up and also don’t worry about the make-up, it is actually light. You can remove it without ease using any kind of makeup remover you bring, they will also help you to remove the neck makeup.

Comment?

I was really satisfied with my experience in Maica! I mean, who doesn’t want to look like a beautiful Maiko? <3<3 Staffs are friendly and helpful (and they keep praising me for my Japanese speaking, lol). I discovered that actually being Maiko is really tough. It was tough with all of those tight kimono (it was even hard to kneel down and get up again) and that heavy wig? Honestly, i feel tortured, yes maybe beauty is pain ^^

 

 

That’s all for today’s post!

I hope that i will have successful presentation tomorrow! ❤ enjoy Spring break, everyone!

 

Love,

 

Afifa Ayu Koesoema