Laruku Jakarta 2012 – Finally

Finally, after ten years of waiting, L’Arc en Ciel (Laruku) will perform in Jakarta, Indonesia. What a long wait for Indonesian Laruku fans since their introductory début as a musician that fill a theme song in a famous Japanese Anime airing in Indonesia, Rurouni Kenshin. The japanese Super Band will perform at Lapangan Senayan, Jakarta – May 2nd 2012 starting from 08.00 PM. Further information can be found at : http://rajakarcis.com/2012/01/25/larc-en-ciel-world-tour-2012/


To me, this is just like a dream comes true. I remember, ten years ago I was dreaming of watching their concert live in Japan. However, I couldn’t manage to catch their live performance even during my previous one year stay in japan and the subsequence visit two year after. Therefore, this “might be once in a lifetime” chance  really cannot be missed.  I gave my full effort in getting the ticket as soon as possible because as expected, the ticket were sold fast. Fortunately I already got the ticket 🙂

This concert will never be possible to happen without the great effort from Indonesian Laruku fan base community – L’Arc en Ciel Indonesia (http://www.facebook.com/larcencielindonesia). Although Indonesia has a very big fan base, the community could unite those aspiration and probably this makes Laruku spot Indonesian fan interest in their live performance and finally decided to put Indonesia as one of their 2012 World Tour destination.

Now,, just wait for the D-Day of the first L’Arc en Ciel performance in Indonesia. See you L’Arc en Ciel 🙂

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Tokyo Disney Sea 2011

During my second visit to Japan, I have had a chance to visit Tokyo Disney Sea, a part of Tokyo Disney Resort which is one of “Must See” place in Japan and based on Wikipedia, it is the 5th most visited theme park in the world (1). The Disney Sea was the fastest theme park in the world to reach the milestone of 10 million guests, having done so in 307 days after its grand opening and also the most expensive theme park ever built, estimated to have cost over U.S. $4 billion. Those reputations were some of the reason why I must visit the Disney Sea.

The ticket price was 6200 Yen for adult (18 years & older), 5300 Yen for 12 – 17 years old, and 4100 Yen for below 12 years old. It is surely far more expensive than Indonesia newest theme park but it sure worth the price. ( For example : Trans Studio : Rp. 200,000. or 2000 Yen and Disney sea Rp. 620,000. or 6200 Yen). The official website can be found in :http://www.tokyodisneyresort.co.jp/en/index.html

The theme park area is categorized to seven areas which are :

1 Mediterranean Harbor

Mediterranean Harbor is the entrance “port-of-call” and themed as an Italian port city, complete with Venetian gondolas that guests can board and ride. It is very good spot for going out with your lover 🙂 The surrounding is so romantic and pleasant.

The main purpose of this harbour is as a main stage (or water stage I prefer) for Disney shows such as “Fantasmic”. This spectacular shows combines laser, lighting, water spray, Disney figures in a story about the magic of many Disney’s stories. (http://www.tokyodisneyresort.co.jp/tdr/movie_en/index.html)

2 Mysterious Island

Mysterious Island is a “port-of-call” within Mount Prometheus, the giant volcano that is the Park’s centerpiece and most prominent feature. It relies heavily on the storytelling of Jules Verne and, specifically, the mythology of the volcano fortress mentioned several times in the books called “Vulcania”. Two  attractions in this area are “Journey to the Centre of the Earth” and  “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea”. To me, I like “Journey to the Centre of the Earth” ride in this area.

3 Mermaid Lagoon

Mermaid Lagoon is home to the characters of The Little Mermaid. The facade is made to look like the Palace of King Triton and features fanciful seashell-inspired architecture. This “port of call” is unique in that it is mostly indoors and recreates the feeling of being underwater.

4 Arabian Coast

This “port of call”, like Mermaid Lagoon, is themed after a popular Disney animated film, this time Aladdin. It recreates an exotic Arabian harbor combined with an “enchanted world from 1001 Arabian Nights”.

5 Lost River Delta

Located at the back of the park, the dominant structure in this “port of call” is a huge, ruined Central American Aztec pyramid which houses the E.M.V. attraction Indiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Crystal Skull. The Indiana Jones Adventure ride was my most favourite attraction in the park.

6 Port Discovery

This “port of call” is hailed as “the marina of the future”. It is sometimes called the “Tomorrowland” of Tokyo DisneySea and is somewhat of a cross between the never-built Discovery Bay concept for Disneyland and Discoveryland in Disneyland Park (Paris).

7 American Waterfront

This “port of call” represents the northeastern seaboard of the United States in the early 20th century. It features two themed areas, an “Old Cape Cod” section, and a “New York Harbor” section with an elaborate backstory.

Additional Reference : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disney_sea

I spent 12 hours in the park 🙂 The crowd was so huge that so many main attractions offered queue up to 2.5 hours each ride. If I may advice you, come not in a holiday session,  come in a week day so you can have less queue and you can enjoy many ride as many you can.

The disney resort, especially the Disney Sea really offers a day of dream for me and I am sure for many other visitor. The surrounding are  designed in detail to fulfilll our expectation of a Disney dream world. What really amazed me was the warm smile and gesture of Disney Sea staff. They really showed their spirit in doing their best to makes us feel like living in a dream world. This is a part of Japanese culture in doing their best for any responsibility they bear, I think.

Finally, I really recommend you to visit this theme park if you have a chance. It is very worth the price and provides you uniqueness compared to other Disney theme parks. Some snapshots during my visit can be seen in the gallery. Enjoy )

Tips Mengatasi Home Sick

Home Sick adalah perasaan rindu akan suasana rumah dan kampung halaman. Perasaan ini timbul terutama ketika kita berada jauh dari rumah dengan segala suasanannya sehingga membuat perasaan serasa tak menentu. Tinggal selama setahun di Tokyo membuat saya mengalami pengalaman home sick terberat yang pernah saya alami. Selama berada di Jepang, saya sangat merindukan semua hal mengenai Indonesia. Oleh karena itu, dalam menghadapi home sick saya melakukan langkah-langkah dibawah ini.

1. Berkomunikasi dengan Keluarga di Indonesia

Komunikasi dengan keluarga di Indonesia merupakan obat home sick yang paling mujarab bagi saya. Dengan cara ini, saya bisa langsung mendengar kabar dari keluarga tercinta di Indonesia dan juga bisa langsung berbagi keluh kesah – susah senang dengan mereka.

Metode komunikasi adalah dengan menggunakan sambungan telefon langsung, sms, Skype, dan Yahoo Messenger. Metode telefon langsung adalah metode yang paling mahal karena saya harus membeli layanan kartu telepon khusus bernama SADIA card seharga 2000 yen untuk 2.5 jam masa bicara ke telefon selular di Bandung.  Metode SMS dapat dilakukan dengan berlangganan layanan SMS ke Indonesia melalui layanan SMS Pelangi. Kita dapat mengetik SMS langsung dari HP kita atau dari website mereka. Dengan membayar 2.000 yen, kita bisa mendapat 240 SMS ke nomor HP Indonesia. Metode selanjutnya adalah Skype dan Yahoo Messenger. Keduanya menyediakan layanan chatting dan video call dengan menggunakan media internet tanpa memungut biaya apapun kecuali biaya akses internet

2. Makan masakan Indonesia

Keterbatasan jenis makanan yang dapat dimakan membuat saya semakin rindu untuk memakan masakan khas Indonesia. Untuk mengatasinya, biasanya saya berkunjung ke restoran Cabe yang terletak di Meguro. Restoran Cabe menjadi favorit warga Indonesia di Tokyo karena sebagian besar masakannya halal dan letaknya yang dekat dengan pusat aktivitas warga Indonesia di Tokyo. Menikmati makanan Indonesia bersama teman sebangsa menjadikan home sick semakin terobati.

Selain pergi ke restoran, saya juga suka memasak sendiri masakan Indonesia kesukaan saya. Masakan Indonesia seperti opor ayam, nasi goreng, sup bisa dibuat dengan mudah dengan bantuan bumbu instan yang saya beli di Tokyo atau yang saya bawa langsung dari Indonesia. Terlebih, kamar saya memang dilengkapi dengan dapur yang sangat nyaman tuk digunakan.

3. Berekreasi Keliling Kota

Jepang merupakan negara yang sangat berbeda dengan Indonesia baik dalam hal budaya, penduduknya, orang-orangnya. Karena itu, selalu ada hal baru yang saya temukan setiap saya beranjak dari satu sisi ke sisi lain Jepang. Hal inilah yang membuat rekreasi keliling kota semakin menarik. Baik menggunakan kereta, bus, sepeda, atau jalan kaki, hal-hal baru dan menarik yang ditemui dapat mengobati kerinduan saya terhadap Indonesia.

4. Bertemu Rekan Sebangsa

Pertemuan dan perbincangan dengan rekan sebangsa dan senegara akan sangat membantu dalam mengatasi home sick. Aktivitas seperti makan bersama, berekreasi bersama, atau sekedar bermain futsal membuat perasaan rindu tanah air menjadi terobati. Dengan demikian, selain dapat mengatasi home sick, juga dapat meningkatkan semangat berjuang menempuh studi di Jepang.

5. Bersosialisasi dengan Teman Seperjuangan

Sosialisasi dengan sesama anggota lab atau sesama pelajar asing yang menempuh program yang sama merupakan salah satu cara yang cukup ampuh dalam mengatasi home sick. Sebagian dari beban home sick timbul karena masalah yang timbul selama menempuh studi, oleh karena itu berbagi beban dengan teman seperjuangan dirasa sangat membantu. Meskipun demikian, berbincang dengan sesama warga negara asing dirasa lebih nyaman dibanding dengan warga negara Jepang yang memang dikenal cenderung tertutup. Selama di Tokyo Tech, saya senantiasa berbincang dengan WNA di lab saya, atau lab lainnya untuk mendiskusikan riset, mencari penyelesaian masalah riset, atau saling membantu penggunaan alat eksperimen.

6. Berdoa

Hal terakhir yang sangat manjur dalam mengobati home sick dan bahkan mengatasi semua masalah selama masa studi adalah berdoa dan berserah diri kepada Allah SWT. Dengan berdoa dan berserah diri, saya berada pada titik kesadaran bahwa saya bukanlah apa-apa di dunia ini, tidak memiliki kekuatan apapun, tidak memiliki kelebihan apapun, semua yang ada pada diri saya hanyalah kehendak Allah SWT. Oleh karena itu, ketika menghadapi suatu masalah, semuanya adalah kehendak Allah SWT yang harus kita lalui dengan tetap berusaha, berdoa, dan akhirnya berserah diri. Sungguh kenikmatan yang sangat besar ketika akhirnya kita bisa dengan fokus berserah diri kepada Allah SWT ketika kita hampir putus asa ketika menghadapi masalah.

Selama di Jepang, saya sangat mudah mendapat akses ke kegiatan keagamaan. Ibadah Shalat di Tokyo Tech biasa dilakukan di refresh room tiap bangunan atau ruangan dekat tangga darurat di lantai teratas gedung Minami (South) 9. Selain shalat, Pengajian Midori (Midori : Hijai) , pengajian yang dibentuk oleh pelajar Indonesia di Tokyo Tech rutin diadakan setiap Jumat malam sehabis Isya. Pematerinya berasal dari pelajar Indonesia di Tokyo Tech sendiri dan sesekali mengundang narasumber yang kebetulan sedang berada di Tokyo.

Uraian diatas adalah beberapa langkah untuk mengatasi home sick, kalo mengatasi Japan Sick gimana  ya? ada ide? ^_^’

Blogs of The YSEP Students

About one and half year before when I just received a great news that I were accepted as YSEP Student from ITB, I was really curious about Many things about YSEP. I was questioning myself about what preparation should I made, how was the YSEP Students before me filling their days in Japan, plenty of things that made me worried about YSEP life. Thankfully, I found a very informative blog of Reza Aditya, Indonesian YSEP student 2007/2008. Although this blog is already inactive since February 2009, this blog provides quiet comprehensive and usefull information about YSEP Life. I was very helped by reading this blog when I was doing my departure preparation. (Reza Aditya’s Blog : http://reditya.wordpress.com/)

In YSEP 2008/2009, we were motivated to create our own website that will be linked from official YSEP’s main site. Most of Indonesian YSEP students create the web site by using “Blog type website”. Me, risky, adeline, dian, and della made our own blog that contains small amount of information about ourselves. However, from 5 Indonesian YSEP who created blog at that time, only one who are still writing something for their blog, which is Me ^^’

Well, writing is not an easy activity, I think. Sometimes it is very hard to share our thinking in a shape of writing. For me, the one who still continuing write in my blog, my first objectives is to train my writing skill in especially English and Bahasa Indonesia. I want to be a good idea teller through a good writing. Through a blog, I can train myself to think systematically and write it in an interesting article. At first, it was very hard to motivate myself but eventually I am getting accustomed to write blog.

The second objective was to provide information for people who want to know and to study in Japan. My writing can be very useful since I was the person who ‘really’ stayed in Japan. I experienced many things in Japan, I met many Japanese, and I also read much information directly in Japan. I think people, especially YSEP Student candidate, should be very helped by that.

Now, Indonesian YSEP 2009/2010 students are doing their YSEP life. I have a great-great-great news that they have their personal blog that are so updated and are written in either English or Bahasa Indonesia. I am sure their blog will are very useful for many people in this world.  I just hope they can keep their continuity in writing their blog and create very useful writing for many people who want to know and want to study in Japan.

Here are the list of Indonesian YSEP 2009/2010 students and their blog address :

  1. Akhmad Syaiful Hidayat : http://www.akhmadsyaiful.blogspot.com
  2. Chandra Jinata : chandra28288.wordpress.com
  3. Dita Augystiana : augystiana.wordpress.com
  4. Fakhria Itmainati : fakhria.wordpress.com
  5. Laras Ayutirta : ayupratikto.wordpress.com
  6. Risiana Limuria : risianalimuria.wordpress.com
  7. Risvan Dirza : rvdirza.wordpress.com

PS : Dear ASH, ayo, jangan kalah sama yang lain..! lebih update lagi blognya ya ^^

Rainy Japan

For these 3 days it always raining in Tokyo. The air temperature is ranging from 15-19 degree of Celsius. Last 3 days of golden week was also raining. Not convenient for people who planned an outdoor vacation.

In Japan, it is easier to plan an activities involving weather condition. The weather forecast system is so advance so people can access the accurate weather forecast information from their hand phone at any time. Japanese government also provide a very convenient weather forecast site through this site : http://www.jma.go.jp/jma/en/menu.html . For those who lives outside Japan, and want to get update of Japan weather, you can try this site.

Though now is springtime and the summer is coming, I could not feel the warm breeze of spring. It says that this year weather system is a little bit late, we could still see snow in March and it was still cold in April.

The Sakura season is already ended. No more pink-white color of Sakura as I could see in the Sakura season. Though many flowers is blooming in this spring season, the feeling of seeing a beautiful Sakura blossom is irreplaceable. Missing those beautiful moment.

Japan Open-Air Folk House Museum (Nihon Mikaen)

As a part of Topic of Japan (TOJ) class requirements in this semester, I have to do one Japanese cultural experience. We had 3 choice of cultural experience, the first one is doing Japanese tea Ceremony, second is watching Kabuki or Bunraku, and the third one is visiting Japan open air folk museum.

Actually I wanted to see the Bunraku but because the ticket price is expensive (around 2000 yen) so I decided to go to Japan Open-Air Folk House Museum. This is a place to conserve Japanese traditional architecture by relocating several traditional Japanese houses & buildings from all over Japan to this exhibition area. The city of Kawasaki began to relocate the houses since 1965 and currently has 25 buildings in its exhibit. The houses are varied, and include examples from regions of heavy snow, lodgings for travelers, and a theatrical stage.

Not only buildings are preserved but also additional tools and utensils were kept at the designated area to help depicting the situation of the past.

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We came in a group of 19 people. The admission fee was 250 yen because we came in group (the minimum group was 20 people, but we were really close to 20 so they permit it). The usual price was 500 yen for adult and 300 yen for 65+ years and students.

The first time we arrived, we bought the ticket and enter the museum house. The museum house is a room that displays miniature of Japanese traditional houses and buildings. From this place we get overview information about Japanese traditional architecture. After that, we went outside. That where our tour began.

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We were welcomed by The Hara house. It was from Meiji period (1868-1912) and was originally located in Musashi-kosugi, Kawasaki City. It is now used as a lecture space and for display of seasonal exhibits. For me, this house is totally depicts the situation of Japan just like in the samurai movies.

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From that place, we explore the whole area from houses to houses. They were really amazing and authentic. We can see that the interior and layout of each building could be different depend to the purpose of the building. They are provided with kitchen bath room, and a room that can be functioned as a living room, dining room, and bed room. This kind of room is still used in Japanese modern architecture.

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The last building we visited was traditional Kabuki stage. There were Sakura blossom blooming around the building. The blossoms were blown by the wind and falling around the building. It looked so beautiful. It was just like a pink colored snow flurries. We took a group photos in front of the Kabuki stage.

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It took around 3 hours to explore the whole area. It was really a good experience for me. It was quite different from Japanese architecture for temples and shrines. I learn a lot how Japanese people in the past arranging not only a convenient house but also efficient. I also enjoyed this trip as we went together with other YSEP and Japanese student from TOJ class.

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Noh Performance

Last Saturday (02/14) I went to Yarai Nogakudo to see a Noh Performance. This place is located near Kagurazaka Station, about 40 minutes from TIT’s Ookayama Campus.

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What is Noh? It is one kind of Japanese traditional theater that starts in 14th century. This theater combines poetry, drama, music, and dance into a full beautiful performance. Some character in Noh performance always wore masks while the others wore Japanese traditional clothes. The one who wore masks is the main character of the performance. The usually get a bigger part in dance and poet performance. Noh has been declared a world heritage treasure by UNESCO

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This time Noh performance was held in Yarai Nogakudo. Although it looked like an ordinary Japanese house from the front side, it is actually a dedicated Noh Performance Theater which has a big wooden stage inside the building. The building itself has the capacity to accommodate 300-500 viewers. I could not take picture inside the building since it was forbidden by the theater’s administrator.

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This performance was free for me as well as other Tokyo Tech international students. Mr. Ichiro Nakamura, Noh performance instructor at the World Civilizations Center was provided the free ticket for TokyoTech International Students. The actual ticket prize was 5000 Yen for normal ticket and 2000 Yen for Students Ticket.

I saw 4 performances. The performance duration was different for each performance. The 1st and 3rd one was about 40-60 minute and the 2nd & 4th one about 20 minutes. All performances were played in Japanese language so it was very difficult to understand the story. Even for the Japanese people, Noh dialog is hard to understand because it uses old, polite, uncommon vocabulary. That is the one of the real characteristic of Noh performance. Actually we were given papers about English translation of the Noh performance so we can still understand the plot. However, we cannot catch the beautifulness of Noh’s poetry.

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Although some people says that Noh performance is boring, you have to watch this at least Once in your life. Actually it is a beautiful performance. If you understand the plot and tried to imagine the meaning of the poetry, you may get the relaxing sensation when the music and dance hypnotize you. I enjoyed the 1st and 2nd performance very much. But I occasionally slept at the 3rd & 4th performance.

Actually there might be 5th performance. However, I left the theater after 4th performance ended because I have to get back to my lab to clean my specimen framework. Once more, you have to watch it, at least once in your life…

Further reading :

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noh

http://www.micheleyounglive.com/typesoftheatre.htm