Forever young.. I wanna be forever young..
On Saturday, I visited my friends’ house to see their beautiful newborn baby girl. Noa chan is only two months old and absolutely adorable. She is already laughing and mimicking sounds and moves I make. We really bonded after I showed her my classic salsa moves. ^-^
Her parents prepared the most amazing lobster lunch. Me and my husband later joked about how “unadult” we are. If we were to have guests at out house, we wouldn’t even have matching sets of cutlery and plates, let alone a gorgeous feast like that. ^-^
On Sunday, my friend Mai invited me to Ghibli museum. It is impossible to get in without prior reservation so I was lucky to be invited. Ghibli is a Japanese animation studio that was founded by Hayao Miyazaki in 1985. Everything they create is so original, so out of this world and yet so close to heart. They promote the best of human qualities through very innovative storytelling. Their vintage animations are the best. I just love “Totoro” and “Kiki’s delivery service” and “Mononoke Hime”. New ones are good too but I haven’t seen anything newer than “Howl’s moving castle”. Me and my husband are dedicating this week to Ghibli animations. We are gonna watch one every night. I already placed an order at Tsutaya home delivery service.^-^
Unfortunately, it was prohibited to take photos inside which is so sad because they had a huge “Neko bus” and lots of other cute things. I even spotted Hedgehog in the fog posters on the inspirational wall in the drawing studio. ^-^ There were also re-created sets from “Spirited away” and “Mononoke Hime”.
The best part was a short movie that we watched at their in-house cinema. Every month they screen a different work that you can see only there. We saw the one about a girl going hiking into the forest. It was so kind and heart-warming I wanted to cry.
Outside, there was a garden courtyard with a well and a lot of artwork hidden here and there like this sewer cover in the shape of star or dustbunnies hiding in the window.
These are the postcards I bought at a souvenir shop. First three are scenes from “Totoro” and the last one is from “Mononoke Hime”.
I will keep them in my office for inspiration and relaxation. ^-^ These scenes help me remember and go back to those childhood memories of staying at my grand-grandmother’s house in a small village on the Finnish border. She lived by the forest and her house was surrounded with lush green hills with yellow flowers and endless bushes of wild raspberry. She used to scold me for eating too much before dinner. ^-^ At the entrance to the forest by a small stream, there was a huge tree with an old swing that my grandfather setup for my aunt when she was little. I used to swing there too right above the stream all day long listening to the birds and watching my mom and aunt gathering mushrooms and berries. That forest with the tree swing and raspberries is my secret place I go to every time I need to get away from stressful reality. Ghibli animations remind me of that simple life and just how truly precious it was. ^-^
On the roof, there was another small garden with a huge robot character from “Castle in the sky”. The details were so accurate – exceptional work.
On our way back, we walked through Inokashira park and then had lunch at a cute little local cafe close to “Kichijoji shotengai”.
I always go to Starbucks but these little eclectic places are really cool too. They are cozy and personal and hidden away from major streets. I should definitely explore more! I am planning a big trip to Kichijoji “izakaya” strip – tiny Japanese bars with sometimes only a few seats, all packed in an extremely narrow alley. ^-^ I am sure it is going to be a huge culture shock and an amazing experience. Can’t wait!