15 March 2019

Exploring Berlin, Germany


Last year I took a trip to Berlin to see GOT7's perform one of their first European concerts on their World Tour, I had hoped London would be on the list as I had already planned my trip to the UK but unfortunately it wasn't but being the crazy fangirl I am I still wanted to show my support for them after travelling all that way and as I had never visited Germany before I thought this was the perfect opportunity to do so. I was working with a really tight schedule so only had one full day to explore the city as I was leaving the next day right after the concert, ideally I would have loved a few more days to explore but looking back I'm kinda surprised at just how much I was able to see in such a short time...


As soon as I arrived in Berlin I was greeted by these wonderful colourful bears, and also a packet of complimentary gummi bears at the hotel, which was when I realised that bears are the symbol of Berlin and gave myself a mission to find as many around the city as possible. I loved the bears that much I also brought back a bunch of cute bear souvenirs for my friends and family, I mean they're so cute right?


My hotel was near Alexanderplatz which was a great place to stay given our limited time as there were so many things to explore around the area and lots of great shops and places to eat it was also with walking distance of a lot of places and well connected to the bus and train lines so easy to reach from the airport. There is also the Berlin TV Tower (Fernsehturm Berlin) right in the center which is a great place to start as not only can you see the whole of the city from above but it gives you a good idea of where things are so you can plan out your day and of course take in the spectacular views of the city and its surroundings while you're up there.


Within walking distance from Alexanderplatz is Museum Island, which I actually suggest you spend more time exploring if you can, or just dedicate a whole day to visiting the museums there. We really wanted to go inside the museums and had planned to go back later in the day but ran out of time from all the other sightseeing, but at least this gives me a reason to go back and visit again. The buildings are so beautiful to and have a lot of history, you can still see the gunshot holes in some of them. There's so many interesting exhibitions and artworks there to so one day I would love to visit them properly.


Of course Berlin's most famous sight the Brandenburg Gate is a must see and I heard it's even more spectacular at night, this wasn't too far a walk from Museum Island (we did a lot of walking that day!) so worth making a stop just to see it in person and taking those iconic photos.


The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe was something I didn't know much about but it's a really interesting place, some think it resembles a graveyard but all art is open to interpretation and walking through it can be a dizzying experience as the blocks increase and decrease in height and you struggle to find a way out, it has its own beauty though and it was nice to see families sitting there enjoying the sunshine, in the same way The East Side Gallery has been transformed from something painful to something inspiring I see this memorial the same way to.


A hidden gem I found while on my way to the GOT7 concert which wasn't in the guidebooks was this park, Volkspark Friedrichshain. From the moment I stepped through the gates I felt like I had walked into a fairy tale with all the beautiful statues and dreamy fountains, it was just so beautiful I had to mention it! There was also a restaurant in there to which we grabbed a quick drink at and of course places barbecuing sausages and other traditional German treats. If you visit when the weather is good then I would definitely recommend a stop here, it's the perfect place to just relax and enjoy life.


Finally I would totally recommend a sunset river cruise around the city to end your day, it was one of my favourite things we did and a nice way to see the city and end our adventures in Berlin. We didn't initially plan this, we just happened to be walking past, eating our ice cream when we noticed the last boat was due to leave so we thought we might as well hop on board and rest our feet from all the walking we had done that day.


We actually visited a lot more places in our short time there but my battery started to run out on my cameras as well as my internal battery gaining drained from so much walking in the summer heat, luckily there was lots of delicious food there to energise me! I really do hope I get the chance to visit again one day as I really enjoyed my brief time there and would love to explore more of Germany.

What city would you love to visit if you only had 24 hours?
Love & Gummi Bears
Cate
xoxo

05 March 2019

Breaking Down Walls (East Side Gallery, Berlin, Germany)


Honestly, I feel like I lost a bit of my confidence when it comes to creativity, whether it's crafting things, photography or writing my creative outlets were always somewhere I could meditate, relax, pour out my heart and rest my mind but as life got busier I had little time for art in my life and eventually just lost all my confidence for it....


Art has always been important to me, it's how people express their true selves, it's inspiration and it's pain, it's something that makes you wonder and something that brings you home, it comes in many mediums and it's everywhere, sometimes we just need to open our hearts and pay a little more attention. This place The East Side Gallery is the perfect example of that.


While going through this struggle of finding my passion again I remembered my trip to Berlin and walking along these brightly coloured walls, a wall that divided a nation and kept families apart for decades, where people lived and died. Now it's a beautiful place where people can freely express themselves and it made me realise I've built my own wall that I need to break down.


So I'm pushing forward, blocking out the noise and finding my confidence and passion again because I realise that creativity is something really important that I need in my life. Even if the gains don't bring me success financially the most important thing is the emotional and mental gains I make. This is something I need to do for me, something I need to give me the strength and passion to fight through each day.

What do you do when you need a confidence boost?  
Love & Monsters
Cate
xoxo


28 February 2019

Things That Make You Go Oooooo (February 2019)

Happy Chinese New Year

HAPPY LUNAR NEW YEAR!! I always feel Lunar New Year is when the year really begins, and although February is the shortest month it has felt really long to me. As you really enjoyed my post about JB's Birthday event last month, I decided to share another one my favourite kawaii cafe and shops with you as it also hosts Kpop events, and also shared my experience at B'Chill which is BamBam from GOT7's first family owned cafe in Bangkok. Speaking of BamBam.... I'm going to his first fanmeet in Thailand tomorrow and I'm so excited as I have hi-touch which means I will finally meet him up close! March is going to be a very exciting month for me as not only do I have a fanmeet tomorrow but a whole bunch of different exciting events which will keep me occupied all throughout until the end of the month, so please do look forward to hearing about them soon.

♥ Why I Focus on What I Need Right Now Instead of Obsessing Over the Future

♥ 20 Random Acts Of Kindness To Perform Today

♥ 7 Ways to Make This Year More Mindful

♥ Gluten-free Vegan Strawberry Cupcakes

♥ 5 Ways To Train Your Brain For Success



♥ Feel Instantly Calm With This Easy 30-Second Trick

♥ 7 Types of People You Should Have in Your Life by 30

♥ Life’s Too Short to Be Too Busy

♥ 5 Ways The Outdoors Can Change Your Life

♥ 10 Ways To Unwind After a Bad Day


What are you most looking forward to in March?
Love & Hugs
Cate
xoxo

22 February 2019

Asian Dramas I'm Watching & Loving

Pencil Vs Camera - 64

I've recently started getting back into Asian dramas after a long break so I'm finally sharing the dramas I've been watching and have a bit of a diverse list for you. I'm they type of person who sticks with a drama until the end even if I'm not enjoying it as much, normally it takes me a bit longer to watch these dramas as ones I really like I tend to finish within a week so I thought I'd share the ones I haven't been enjoying as much to because everyone has different tastes so maybe you'll find something you'll really like, even though I might not have been the biggest fan.

รักล้นใจนายแกล้งจุ๊บ
Taliw, a cute but dim girl, develops a crush on the smart and handsome Tenten who has just joined her class, in secret he's warm and kindly but in front of others he acts cold and uncaring towards her, the story follows their home and school lives as they become intertwined and they come to terms with their true feelings for one another. I was recommended this drama after watching Full House as it has the same lead actors although admittedly I didn't enjoy this one as much as Full House but I really liked the character of Taliw and their families, I found them all to be very sweet and supportive of her. The storyline is very typical and to be honest I'm done with any storyline that involves a boy being mean to a girl because he likes her... can we end these plots already? I know this drama is an old one but I really disliked Tenten especially after seeing him play a nicer character in Full House, but aside from Tenten all the other characters were really nice, her friends, the teacher, the parents and the love rivals I really liked them and I enjoyed the humour quite a bit, my mum also enjoyed to and said it was fun so if you're looking for something a little light-hearted and fun to watch maybe check it out.

힘쎈여자 도봉순
Bong-Soon comes from a line of women in her family who were blessed with super strength, however if they use their powers for their own selfish gains and to hurt innocent people their powers will be lost. Min-Hyuk is a CEO of video gaming that Bong-Soon dreams of working at to create her own video game with her as the main characters, he witnesses her defending a bus driver from a group of gangsters and hires her as his personal bodyguard and they work together to find out the identity of the person who has been threatening him. This is only a short description of the series as I think most people have already watched this because for the past year it's all people have been telling me to watch and THANK YOU!!! I think this is one of my favourite series ever I absolutely adored all the characters in this show especially Bong-Soon and although it was kinda a strange mixture of serious and humour at times I really enjoyed it and the ending just made me so happy. I devoured this one in less than a week and even my family decided to join me on watching it and they really enjoyed it to so it really is a great watch for everyone, I can definitely see myself re-watching this one again and again whenever I need a pick me up.

结爱·千岁大人的初恋
Pi Pi is a sweet kind but naive, amateur reporter who often finds herself alone in the world, what Pi Pi doesn't realise is that she has an ancient curse which is the cause of all of the misfortune in her life. He Lan Jing Ting, is a being from another world who has been searching for his lost love who he believes to be Pi Pi and is convinced he can save her and help her believe in love again. I was drawn to this drama because of the cast and the interesting storyline of other beings and ancient curses and while I did enjoy seeing the past lives of these characters and how their relationship in the present day developed it just didn't grip me as hard as other dramas and there were some inconsistencies that were hard to ignore. Overall I felt like if this was a period drama about the first time these characters met or if the story had started where it ended it would have been a bit more interesting for me as those scenes really stood out compared to the present day setting where the action just seemed to stagnate after a while. It's not as long as other Chinese dramas being only 25 episodes but it did start to feel like it dragged on although the ending almost seemed too rushed with all the action happening towards the end. That being said Pi Pi's character did grow on me after a while and her interactions with "The Fox" were really cute and I liked seeing how his aura affected her the closer they became. I do wish the series had focused on the two main characters a bit more as the side stories seemed to take over towards the end of the series and the main couple seemed to get the least air time compared to others even though the main story was about them. I did find the folklore of this drama really interesting though and I'd like to know more about these legendary fox gods.


YG전략자료본부
Bigbang's youngest member Seungri is sent to YG's new department AKA Future Strategy Office where he leads a team of bumbling misfits in various projects to help YG's struggling reputation. This show is part sitcom, part mockumentary and very similar in style to The Office or Parks and Rec. It's honestly one of the funniest things I've watched in a while and seriously if you're a KPop fan or even if you're not you need to watch this right now! I still can't quite believe this show exists knowing how strict these companies are with their idols and keeping a clean reputation but this show is a complete play on that, even acknowledging and joking about the scandals that the company has been involved in in the past. Seungri is amazing and said recently he didn't read the any of the shows scripts before filming so he could give more genuine reactions towards the situations he was put it. I think if you know a little about YG and the Kpop world you'll probably understand and get more out of this than someone who doesn't know anything but it's still a really funny show and I hope Netflix gives it a second season.

두부의 의인화
Baek Min Kyung's adorable dog Tofu unfortunately dies while she is at a work meeting with the handsome yet arrogant celebrity Kim Joo Heon who mistakes her for a superfan, upon hearing the news of he dogs passing she rushes to the vet but it's too late and she returns home wishing she had just one last chance to see him, her wish is granted but Tofu doesn't return in his original form but that of a human boy but he only has 49 days with her until he returns to the afterlife. I enjoy watching web-dramas and was drawn to this not just because VIXX's Ken stars as Kim Joo Heon but the plot sounded absolutely adorable and it's something I think would work well as a full drama. Unfortunately as with most web-dramas it's just too short so it's hard to develop any sort of meaningful relationships with the characters and the plot is often rushed, this web drama was just 8, 10 minute episodes. I did enjoy all the actors in this though and found them quite genuine with a great touch of humour although the ending was quite predictable but very sweet, it's just a shame such a great concept had such a short run as it would have been great to go more in depth with Tofu and how these dogs came to be humans and how they recognise each other and live in this world.


What series have you been watching lately?
Love & Ice Coffee
Cate
xoxo

14 February 2019

B'Chill Cafe & Restaurant - GOT7's BamBam's First Family Owned Cafe in Bangkok, Thailand!


As I'm writing this B'Chill have just announced that they are closing the Bang Na location and I'm so sad that I didn't get the chance to share this post earlier so you could have had the chance to visit there to. This was Thai Kpop star GOT7's BamBam's first family owned and run cafe in Thailand and although this location is closing you will still be able to support BamBam and his family at the new branch B'Chill Day and Night.


I was lucky enough to visit B'Chill a few times over the past year with different Ahgase friends I've met from all over the world, it actually wasn't too far from where I lived although the location was still quite difficult to find as it was pretty much in the middle of nowhere and far from any main roads or hotspots but it was always full of dedicated GOT7 fans and our Gotoon dolls and figures.


'We Are Family' is the slogan of B'Chill and you really get that feeling when you're there, from the delicious home cooked meals to the photos of BamBam and his family decorating the walls and the the sweet little touches of Ahgase cookies and cakes they sold (green birds being the symbol of GOT7 fans) it really made you feel at home. BamBam's family actually have an active roll at the cafe, cooking, serving and managing how things are run so you might be lucky enough to meet them there. On one of my last visits I was lucky enough to meet Beer, BamBam's older brother, who was busy training staff on how to make drinks for the new location, he even made our coffee that day to and took a little break from training the staff to chat and take photos with us, they're such a kind family and always warm to fans who visit so don't be afraid to say hi if you see them working there.


When I say the food is good I'm not lying! They have a big menu full of Thai, Western and Korean influenced dishes and everything I've tried there has always been fresh, fragrant and full of flavour. BamBam's mother is a big fan of Korean food and cooking so had a part in designing the menu and teaching the chefs how to make certain dishes, so you can be sure you're getting a home cooked meal just like what BamBam likes to eat. There aren't many vegetarian dishes on the menu but you can always ask them if it's possible to leave out the meat etc. as most dishes are cooked fresh they should be able to make something to your liking.


I'm so happy I got the chance to visit B'Chill before it closed and take a flock of my Ahgase friends there to. It's so sad that they closed down the first location as I'm sure lots of people would loved to have gone there and seen where the story started but the new riverside location looks absolutely beautiful so I hope I can visit there soon and let you all know what's it's like.

What's your favourite Thai food?
Love & Watermelon Shakes
Cate
xoxo

Psssst if you want to see more awesome cafes from around the world you can click the button below, buy me a coffee, get treats & a shoutout on my next post



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