Monday, March 27, 2017

Beautiful & Trendy Book Stores

We are very fond of books and my wife has many shelves of book collections at home which she loves dearly. I am sure everyone loves to read books too, be it for leisure or educational references. Let me brag a bit about my history of books again for those who have not heard. Many years ago, our local chain M P H did not have any Chinese books in their collection as this PooPULAR was controlling in the Chinese books monopoly. I was there at the right place and time, when I met the top publisher from Taipei who was at the book fair at The Mines. One thing led to another and my wife took me to Taipei several times to sign the distributorship deal. With the help from a tycoon, we ordered several big containers of the best books of all titles and topics from this guy in Taipei to be sold at the M P H throughout our country. The rest is history now.

So you could see how excited each time we found beautiful and unique book stores in overseas. They often come with cafes, good cakes & coffee plus cozy corners to read books. Here is one good place to share which we stumbled during our visit to Xi'an.

WanBook Store - Xi'an, China 

We were walking all over the shopping mall in search of a
SIM card for internet but found this lovely book store instead.

Forget about the SIM card, as my wife had to go inside.
She must search for good books like a hungry wolf.

This whole entrance area has very neat sitting benches and tall stools
for book lovers to Eat, Drink & Read.

Here is where the barista and cashiers work behind
the counters.

 Look at how they display books from the floor to ceilings!
So canggih & pandai!

Many shelves with displays. 

Some smokers prefered to sit outside.

They have many useful and unique items like
souvenirs, water decanters, Chinese tea and others.

Smart see-through shelves act as partitions.

There are many divided areas for private readings.
The folks in China, Taiwan & Japan read a lot
everywhere on the streets, trains and cafes.

 More books & more shelves.

The pine wood interior decors have homely feel with lamp shades,
side boards, and comfortable chairs.



Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Japanese Horse Oil Cream

This Is Not A Paid Post

Have you ever heard of humans using the horse's oil on their faces? We went to Tokyo during the winter of 2015 for our vacation. While we were there, a good friend in New York City texted my wife to purchase a jar of Horse Oil Cream from any pharmaceutical shops in Tokyo. He shared how fantastic these creams from Japan could do 1001 wonders for our skin from healing scalds, whitening, removing marks, iron out wrinkles and even lift the sagging skins. He swore that these creams are the best he had ever used in his entire life!

I was rather skeptical as there are too many facial and skin creams flooding the global market that carry their own testimonials and claims of merits.  I myself have been using various expensive brands of cleansers, creams and even serums from SK-II Men's and Biotherm. While they could keep my face clean and well moisturized, I know there is a limit to fight the natural aging process of our human bodies. I will not be young forever and would gracefully accept the fact that my face will look like dried prunes someday.

This friend had specifically pointed out several times that we had to find any brand of the Japanese Horse Oil Cream but the label must say that it is "Made In Hokkaido". He placed the highest qualities for those manufactured in Hokkaido because they always used the best grade & purest horse lard. The horse powered strengths and effective results were always awesome and convincing to both the male and female users of the 3 generations. 

There is nothing I would not try under the sun for my benefits and pleasure. The price was even more appealing and affordable to be tagged less than 1000 Japanese Yen per jar. I bought myself a jar and several small tubes to be given to close friends. That night before I retired to sleep at the Tokyo's hotel, I washed my face and smeared my whole face lightly as the wintry air was rather dry. I swept across my forehead and face till my neck with my 3 fingers.

Next morning, I woke up and felt a mild sensation on my face! Voila! My whole face felt refreshed and every inch of my facial pores felt the tightening & lifted feelings. I looked into the mirror and liked what I saw. There has been no turning back ever since and I have been using them as night creams twice weekly before sleep as my bedroom's air con is always set at the freezing 16 degrees C with full blast air to swing. 

I bought another jar during my recent trip to Sapporo as I believe that one jar could last me over a year. There has been many testimonials in the websites on the positive results of these horse oil creams and even shampoos that helped hair regrowth tremendously. Some Westerners have protested over these ancient horse oil creams on its cruelty to animals but the argument would never cease. These horse oils have been used since the ancient days of China's Tang dynasty and were introduced to Japan much later where they were perfected using special breed of horses in Hokkaido. We are aware that they breed those horses for their meat as delicacy and the excess lard are processed into wide cosmetic products. Try them yourself and be convinced on how its "horse power" strengths of the lard could help repair, moisturize and tighten your sagging face.


Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Daxingshan Temple - Xi'an in China

I would highly recommend anyone to visit Xi'an City if you only have one chance to visit China. I have so far visited Beijing, Tianjin, Chengde, Shanghai, Suzhou, Nanjing, Jiuhuashan, Chengdu, Emeishan, Guangzhou, Dunhuang, Huashan, Xi'an and passed through many smaller towns too. I love Xi'an City the most for its vast and well preserved historical sites especially the thousands of  Terracotta Warriors buried inside the many Tombs of First Emperor Qin Shi Huang. This place would really blow your mind!

Xi’an is a very large bustling city with a population of 8.7 million. It is the capital 
of Shaanxi Province in central China and once known as Chang’an (Eternal Peace).
It marks the Silk Road’s eastern end and was home to the Zhou, Qin, Han
and Tang dynasties' ruling houses.

 That morning we walked outside our Ramada Bell Tower Hotel
and saw a small crowd. My wife went to look-see and
kaypoh for so long!

The city folks were gambling real cash by the streets!
The banker challenged anyone to play the Chinese Chess
against him. I was so tempted to try my Chinese Chess
skills but chickened out. 

 We had walked past the famous Drum Tower nearby the hotel.

We also walked past this Bell Tower.

They have very good subway systems on par with Japan.
The handsome guys were smartly dressed like
Chinese Grooms to guard & usher at the train's doors!


 We took the subway train to visit this famous ancient 
Daxingshan Temple which is located at the Xiaozhai's business
district in the South of Xi'an.

I was acting cute outside PARKSON's which is the most high end
department stores in China! They sell all the branded stuffs.

 Entrance to Daxingshan Temple which was first built during the
Western Jin Dynasty. Later around year 582AD of the Sui Dynasty,
the Emperor Wendi name it Da Xing Shan Temple.

I reenacted SK's Signature pose. Cute or not?

This is a picture of the most famous Monk Kukai of Japan
who led his entourage to study Buddhism from this temple.
Later, he returned to Japan to spread the Buddhism and
went into meditation at the temple in Mount Koyasan
at Wakayama Prefecture. Many Japanese believe that he is
still alive in a meditative state. We visited this temple
and the largest cemetery in Japan. If you wish to read
my blog post, the LINK IS HERE.

The smaller prayer hall.

 The impressive Main Prayer Hall.

 The monks were leading the prayer chantings around the
golden statues of the Buddhas Of The 5 Directions.

 This is a replica of The Wild Goose Pagoda.

My wife was spinning the mantra wheels for
World Peace & Harmony.

I was often been reprimanded for bad speech
and foul mouths!

This is the Officer From Hell. Do you remember my
blog post about the Hell Officer who spoke to me??
You can read them HERE.

 Daxingshan Temple in Winter.


Thursday, March 9, 2017

City Wall @ Xi'an - China

It was our second trip to this ancient capital of China which has the most interesting historical sites and mountains. The last trip in 2012, we barely had enough time to visit this famous City Wall of Xian which is the most complete city wall that has survived all the fierce battles in China.

So we made sure we allocated one full day to visit the whole city wall and enjoy the panoramic view! We truly enjoyed riding bicycles around the whole city wall.

Come let's tour the walls now....

1. I was told many times that my past lives were in China &
once fought in many battles alongside the Chinese Emperor's army.

2. This beautiful City Wall's fort was built during the reign 
of Zhu Yuanzhang, the first Emperor of the Ming Dynasty 
(Year : 1368-1644)

3. The map covers 13.7 kilometers (8.5 miles) in length 
with a deep moat surrounding it.  

4. The City Gates stand with grandeur and look very majestic 
as a prominent landmark in Xi'an especially when lighted up
at night fall.

5. This solid looking ancient steps of the city wall , 
is ranked as one of the largest ancient military defensive 
systems in the world.

 6. It is very wide and spacious all around. You need to pay
a fee to get inside to enjoy the panoramic skyline of Xi'an city.

 7. There is a booth to rent bicycles and a shop that sells
many types of interesting souvenirs. You can buy from them
at fixed & very reasonable prices.

 8. Look at the cute letter box!

9. There are almost a thousand bicycles for grabs!
In Summer the whole place is very hot with big crowds.
That's why we chose winter when the crowd is smallest
and the wind is cold.

10. That's my wife with wrapped face. She cycled very fast
as she has 2 expensive bikes at home and has joined
the inter state cycling in Malaysia!

11. Some outer walls are higher and this side is the inner wall.

 12. This is another City Gate.

13. Many bridal couple would come here for photo shoots.

14. All tourists stopped to look at their photography
session with a nice spectacular backdrop.

15. There are several buildings inside the City Wall.

 16. I loved these very old Chinese houses that stood outside the walls. 

17. This is one of the many viewing posts for
looking out at intruders.

18. We stopped a few times to 'Wefie' for remembrance.

19. More benches to relax and browse their smartphones.

 20. I spotted this magnificent looking Tibetan Buddhist Temple.

21. The same temple looks huge and lengthy in area size.

22. This is another side of the City Gate.

23. My wife who is a Tai Chi gold medallist, stopped
and did a warm up exercise in this ancient site.

24. It is almost 2 hours and they are still shooting
the wedding photos in the grey weather.

25. These are real solid ancient walls where the soldiers hid to
peek at the enemies.

26. I could see the entire Railway Station Of Xi'an where
we boarded the 24 hour train ride to Dunhuang.

27. It was a victory for me to race across the huge City Wall on a bicycle.
I have prayed in a temple that I will visit Xi'an again.