Two months ago, I start feeling tension pain on my neck, back of my head, and forehead. At first, I think the tension appear because I just normally tired from my daily activity, but then, it’s getting more intense.
One day, I can’t bear with the tension pain anymore and decided to get some treatment. I don’t like taking medicine, so I was think some kind of body treatment would be wonderful. Massage it is.
After 15 minutes of googling, I found out that most of therapist/spa will closed at 6 pm. It was weekdays at that time, so I have to find therapist/spa that still open until after office hours. It’s a bit hard actually to find it, but finally, I managed to find one: Martha Tilaar Spa Express in Kuningan City. I make a phone call at 5 pm to reserve a treatment at 7 pm.
They have a lot of treatment, but basically the treatment was divided into 3 categories: Body, Face, Hand & Foot. I’m having ‘Back Massage’. The description said, “Massage treatment special at the back, neck, and shoulder, for relaxation and reduce headache due it’s supporting muscle tension“. Sounds perfect.
I arrived at Martha Tilaar Spa Express on time. The therapist quickly prepared my treatment bed and then ask me to come in.
Surprisingly, this is not female-only spa (I saw a guy doing foot treatment together with his wife when I enter the treatment room). But then when I saw my treatment bed, they are covered with a thick curtain so I think it’s ok.
The therapist asked me to take off my clothes, and lay off at the treatment bed. She firstly wipe my back with a warm towel and rub it with treatment oil.
And then, here goes the torturing time.
My therapist start with giving me massage from lower back to shoulder. Seems like my therapist have dinner already since she was so powerful. I was cringing a lot during the massage and pray the therapist will not stepping on my back because she probably will break my bone.
The most hurtful massage are the one from lower back to shoulder to each part of your back (right and left). The therapist will do some push and then she’s doing twisting movement when it’s almost reach your shoulder. IT HURTS SO BAD, I even crying. My therapist, probably know there is some knots that make tension on my back (Indonesian probably will say ‘uratnya ngerinkel‘), repeat the movement for many times until there’s no cracking sound on that part.
The other massage actually enjoyable. The therapist even use some funny wodden roller. I laughing in pain when the wodden roller reach my waist because my waist is pretty sensitive for some touches.
The back massage session lasted for 45 minutes. After the massage session is done, the therapist asked me if I want to drink hot ginger tea or cold lemon grass tea. I choose the ginger one.
I can’t find myself getting feel sleepy on this-should-be-relaxation time like the one they advertising it on those glossy magazine. But hey, my back feel so much better and the tension pain is gone!!! I also feel my bloodstream improved after the treatment.
The back massage cost IDR 108.000. I think the price is pretty much ideal. Great location, great staff (the staff are all woman), but unfortunately the spa aren’t female-only and no toilet inside the spa. Will i back to have some massage? I will! But probably will looking for another branch which have female-only option!
I spent my first day in Nagoya visiting Maruya Hatcho Miso Factory!
Miso is a slow-fermented soybean paste with a strong salty flavor that contains high protein and rich in vitamin and mineral. Hatcho miso is the darkest form of miso, almost black in color. It tastes like an aromatic soy sauce but tough like a clay (similar with terasi in Indonesia).
Miso is essential ingredients that used for cooking in Japan. Breakfast is not a breakfast without miso soup in Japan. Besides soup, you can make miso as dressing or for marinated your dishes.
Maruya Hatcho miso has been operating since 1337. It ‘s one of the oldest Miso factory in Japan. The factory was located near Okazaki Castle, in the central of the Mikawa district of Aichi prefecture (around 60km east of Nagoya city). “Hatcho” itself refers to the fact that the miso factory was 8 blocks from the castle (“ha” meaning 8, and “cho” meaning one city block).
Maruya Hatcho miso was made according to traditional methods. Pure soybeans are washed, steamed, and then mashed. The mashed soybeans will be dusted with koji (the fermenting agent used in miso and soy sauce manufacture) and then mixed with pure sea salt and natural spring water, resulting a miso mixture. The miso mixture then will be placed in a large wooden barrel that made from Japanese cedar woods. After the barrel filled with miso mixture, it will be sealed with a lid. Around 600 pieces of stones from Yahagi river will placed in a pyramid shape on the top of barrel, to compress the miso mixture and squeeze out the excess water. After that, miso mixture will be ‘sleep’ for 3 years to slowly mature through the humid summers and mild winters, and then complete the fermenting proccess.
After completing the fermenting process and becoming the mature miso, miso is ready to pack. You can bought miso or it’s derivative product at the factory store.
For visiting Maruya Hatcho Miso factory, take JR Tokaido Line train from Nagoya Station to Toyohashi and stop Okazaki Station, and then transfer to Aichikanjo Tetsudo train and stop at Nakaokazaki station. It will take 45 minutes for arrived. JR Pass only covered the JR Tokaido Line, so you have to pay 260 yen once your arrived at Nakaokazaki station for the Aichikanjo Tetsudo train.
The tour is in Japanese, but thanks to google translate, I can communicate with my super friendly tour guide! The tour available from 09.00-16.00, and free of charge.
I have a really big change in working department last month. It’s coming really sudden and to be honest, I also didn’t expect that happen really soon. My plan is to working at least for 3 more years. Something bad happened and I have to make a decision. Working is a serious thing, and for me to deliver the best result, I have my own creative process. And when I can’t deliver the best result, don’t you think it’s both wasting time and money for hiring me?
I have arrived to the understanding that it’s okay if people noted my mistakes and sweating over it. I will make waaaaaay more mistakes anyway because that’s how I will learning, getting better and getting stronger, in the best way. Let me just focus with people who sees growth with me instead pointing on my mistakes.
But, don’t worry! I have landed in a new job! I’ll tell you in the next post!
“Today, we have Kyoto Marathon! Unfortunately, the road is closed now so the bus only can take you until here” Said the bus station officer with his best effort for explaining to me why the bus stop before we arrived at Arashiyama.
“You can walk! It’s only 10 minutes from here!”, He added it when he saw me with my confused-as-always face. 10 minutes walking for Japanese people = 30 minutes walking for Indonesian.
The bus I take from hostel to Arashiyama was made a stop and then turn back at Kyoto Bus Co. Ltd., Head Office building. It was 1,3 km before Togetsukyo bridge. Before start walking I bought some bottled drinks at Lawson because at the end I just take a long breath and agree with myself that I will walk to Arashiyama. I’m almost there! No turning back!
(Well, the worst thing that can happen is I get lost, going to the nearest police station, and they will took me to the nearest train station, right?).
(Or if the police can’t speak or understand english, scenario no 2: let’s give them my boss phone number and let him explain that his employee was lost and please take her to the nearest train station/bus stop)
(If Nakamura-san or Jimba-san read this: I probably will do scenario no 2 if I really get lost at Japan’s remote area where’s there is no internet signal. Hontōni gomen in advance *bowing*)
But actually, I have saw a special welcome sign at my hostel that welcoming people who joining Kyoto Marathon, also when I have breakfast at hostels common area, I met 3 persons wearing a complete running suit (running t-shirt, light parka, sports legging, running shoes, and running hat) but I have no idea the event will be held today! So after trying to remember, it’s my fault for not putting attention after all. Gomen, my feet -_-
It’s really fun to watch the marathon! Everyone is cheering up and give high-five to the marathon attendee (hmm, athletes?) and saying “Ganbareeee! Ganbare! Ganbare! Ganbare!”. If you watch my previous insta stories, you can see that we are not allowed yet to crossing the street. We have to wait until the marathon finished.
After the marathon was finished, we can finally cross the street! I directly go up for the bamboo groove!
After visiting Arashiyama bamboo grove, I went to Tenryuji Temple.
Arashiyama, check! Now moving to Kiyomizudera!
Next, Fushimi Inari!
For visiting the Tenryuji and Kiyomizudera, you have to pay 400 yen for the entrance ticket. But it’s worth it guys! I’m going to all those places (Arashiyama, Kiyomizudera, Fushimi-Inari) using Kyoto bus pass so I only have to pay 500 yen!
I’m going back to hostel around 7 pm with my feet that feel like a limp noodle. I really wish I could visit Kinkaku-ji and Toji temple but they are closed at 5 pm. Maybe this is a sign I have to visit Kyoto again someday? We’ll see!
I’m still having period cramps in the morning but I pushed myself to go out and doing something. I wash my clothes in the morning, get some food at Family Mart, and even stretching a little. I also ask Jimba how can I get medicine in Japan (just go to konbini like 7-11 or pharmacy), because I’m looking for a store that selling cataflam from Novartis, but seems like they didn’t sell it in Japan. I tell him I got period cramps, and he suggest me to get this medicine called solmac.
This herbal liquid medicine was made from a mixture of grass, leaf, liquorice, turmenic, and ginseng. It was tasted HORRIBLE lol, but it gave you a warm and comfort feeling inside your tummy. You can take this medicine before or during eating, but not after eating. This medicine is for 15 years old and above, so, not for kids.
I feel way much better after taking the medicine, so I decided to start my journey in Kyoto. I go to my hostel receptionist and buy Kyoto Bus Pass because they have one, asking about direction for going to Arashiyama, Ginkakuji, and Fushimi Inari, then I’m saying thank you and leave.
Alhamdulillah the bus stop was really close with my hostel. I take bus number 11 for Arashiyama. One hour later, I arrived at Arashiyama.
I have to admit, this is one of the most beautiful place I ever come.
But my period cramps can’t take this beauty for long. It starts to be hurt again, so I go down around 4 pm. I’m not even arrived at the bamboo groove -_-
To make myself happy, I decided to have a latte at Arabica Coffee Kyoto.
I’m going back to hostel, take more solmac, and then going back to bed. Another not lucky day, but I repay it on the next day! Make sure to read it on my next post!
From Nara, I went to Kyoto using local train on Kintetsu-Kyoto line. It tooks 1 hour because the train stop at every station. I took the train from empty, crowded, empty, crowded, empty, crowded, empty, and finally very crowded at one stop before Kyoto station.
I’m arrived in Kyoto at the evening and straightly go to hostel. From Kyoto station, I take subway Karasuma line, which is not covered by JR Pass. I thought I have to buy ICOCA (IC card for Kansai region, just like SUICA), but surprisingly I can use my SUICA in Kyoto.
The hostel located in Kawaramachi area, pretty much strategic place because it’s close to Nishiki Market and Takashimaya if you want to do some shopping or looking for souvenirs.
I can’t go anywhere because PMS strike and I’ve got a very bad cramp. The bloody monster is coming -_-