Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Tulip's Outing

It has been one week since the end of the Golden Week holiday, which consist of a few public holidays falling consecutively during the first week of May in May and makes it one of the longest holidays for working Japanese, besides the Oshogatsu on January 1st and Obon in August. I would have gone down to Tokyo to join the annual PPKTJ gathering but due to some circumstances, I gave it a skip this time.
It has been tight financially lately, especially to the fifth graders at kosen as a sum of money will be spent for the university entrance exams. However, we didn't want to put the several days of holidays to waste, hence the five of us - Yan Kuang, Aki, Muazam, Ulya and myself, decided to pay a visit to Echigo Hillside Farm two weekends ago. Yes, you read it correctly. If you have seen this entry before, you should be well-aware that I already went there a few days earlier. But staying in the dormitory for the whole day can be really boring, so I tagged along with the rest to the same place again.
While walking from the parking area to the entrance of this park, I spotted something cute.
Pity that fella who dropped his toy here.
But that is a close-up shot of the toy. Wanna know where it was found? Here is a bigger picture.
What the fish-lah?! This tiny toy car took up one whole parking lot.
Now, I think it wasn't accidentally dropped by somebody, but this toy car was parked there. I wonder how big the people who sat in it haha. Moral of the story? Always look at the bigger picture.
The main entrance to the park.
There was entrance fee for the day, unlike the time I went few days earlier when it was free.
When I was lining-up waiting for my turn to get the tickets from the ticket machine, I felt something soft and furry touching and rubbing against my legs. I could felt it although I was wearing a long jeans. So, I turn my head down only to see two dogs tried to lick me. A person who can't really stand furry animals like me freaked out immediately and almost jumped away from the line lol. Stupid two dogs. Guess what they did when I walked away?
No, they didn't chase after me, but they remained rooted there kissing with each other.
There is a rose farm on the left upon entering the farm, but it was still too early to spot any roses there, not even the rose bud. Come end of May until mid June, I'm sure the place will be fragrant with scents from the blooming roses. However, the rose soft cream is already on sale and we thought of trying it. I doubted how would it taste like, and when I took a first bite, it was nothing different from how air bandung taste like - a mixture between rose flavoured syrup and milk.
The rose farm.
The four of us with our red rose soft cream.
But it was quite a hot day, so the soft cream came at the perfect time for our dry throat. We didn't need to walk any further because the small hilly area full of bright, colourful tulips was just right in front of us.
Take a look at the statistics.
112 kinds of tulips, 140,000 stalks of them altogether.
I won't be putting many pictures of the tulips in this entry, otherwise it will end up being a super long one. For the rest of the pictures, click here. Here are just a selected shots from the tulip section of the park.
Fortunately, the heavy winds and rain for the past two weeks didn't do much damage to the flowers.
They name this "Drumline".
We wanted to pose in front of this little house but the line was just too long, so I just settled with taking a picture of the house lol.
All five of us wore five different colour of shirts on that day, and that gave us the opportunity to try some different kinds of angles and camwhoring styles. Here comes the camwhoring moments.
Choose your own jersey colour!
Remember the black and white Ying Yang logo? This would be Kuing Kuang
(inside joke) lol.
This bright yellow Simpsons shirt made me more visible here.
With my two room mates for the past two years.
Nope, it wasn't a threesome like some of you might be thinking lol. Yan Kuang was my room mate two years ago, while I shared a room with Muazam last year.
While walking through the rows of tulips and continued taking photos, I saw two kids posing for their mom. Both of the kids were wearing the traditional Dutch attire which are provided for the visitors to try and have pictures taken at the tulip farm in the background. I approached the mom and asked her if I could have a picture with her kids and she agreed with a smile.
Took a picture with Little Red Riding Hood.

That doesn't mean I'm a paedophile, okay?
We continued to walked around the park which was as packed as the day I was there few days earlier even though it's not free this time. I guess the entrance fees didn't bother the Japanese too much as it was a Sunday and not often for them to get such a long holiday to be spend with their families.
More colourful flowers along the walking path.
The mascot for this park, which is supposed to be a seed of pine trees.
At one end of the park, there is man-made pond which is made-up of 18 smaller ponds and 32 water falls shaped in a mountain-paddy field motif. Besides that, there are also six different water fountains direct the many different water expressions to music. The theme of the music is "Harmony and coexistence between nature and people". The performances last from five to fifteen minutes each, and are on the hour and half hour.
While watching the performances of the musical fountains, we stopped and grabbed lavender soft cream for each of us. However, they didn't taste good at all, to my disappointment. The lavender soft I tasted in Hokkaido was light years better.
The musical fountain will look even more stunning at night when they turn on the lights.
Our lavender soft. I think the vanilla soft cream from McD is even better.

Just next to the pond is a section where children can have fun with water. The place is equipped with interesting toys like water machine guns, water tunnels, mist tree, and water dome which excite children as they play.
But apparently, it also attracted attention not only from the children, but some other group-age people as well.
Looks like an interesting water theme park ahead.
Getting ourselves ready to be wet.
The three 'kids' having fun there which led to weird stares from the parents.

After we were wet (pun unintended), we dried ourselves up and continue to walk around the other sections of the park. Basically, you will only see two types of groups of people; either the parents came with their kids, or couples dating at some secluded spots around the park. The kids will be kicking their balls with their parents, while the girlfriend will be playing with the balls of their boyfriends.
Yes, I'm serious. No kidding here, even though it's a public area and there were so many people on that day. There was this time when I saw a couple behind some bushes and the girl was already down on the grass while the boyfriend was still sitting on the bench. Do not ask me what happen next; I'll leave it to your creative imaginations.
Picnic and relaxing on the grass.
Soft dome where kids will go up and jump on the huge round dome. I'd love to try it but too bad adults are not allowed to try it.

So, that sums up out outing for almost half a day and we decided to call it a day. It was still during the middle of the Golden Week where most of us were away to elsewhere, especially the juniors. So, the remaining ones are the fifth year seniors and a couple of international students on the second floor of our block.
I came back to find this written on the whiteboard.


Sabishi in Japanese is supposed to mean lonely (X means the person is away).

I was a lonely boy this Golden Week.


Crabbed!! said...

Haha...lol at the toy car.

Hmm...tulips certainly look better dry and upright.

=chuan guan= said...

da flower is marvelous.......
damn..when r u gona send me beautiful pics!!!!!!!!! T_T

calvin said...

@ crabbed!!:
haha, yeah, the toy car just dropped at the right spot at the right time xD

i think you are referring to the conditions of the tulips when you was there, aren't you? lol xD

calvin said...

@ =chuan guan:
yes, they are. soon =D