Sunday mass at “The Church of the Assumption” in Toyama, Japan

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I was in Toyama for 3 weeks during February 2017 and was looking for a Catholic Church to attend Sunday Mass. After some searching, I found “The Church of the Assumption” in Toyama City Centre.

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I could attend Sunday Mass’s on two Sundays 5th Feb (10am Service in Japanese) Sunday 12th Feb (2pm Service in English). The Sunday Service is in English is held only every second Sunday of the month. There were two Indian Nuns who can speak English and were extremely welcoming. For those driving there is plenty of free parking space in front of the Church and paid parking in the vicinity of the Church.

Contact number: 076-421-3508

Address: 5-10 Sannomachi, Toyama, Toyama Prefecture 930-0064, Japan.

Visited February 2017

Nayomi’s Family Restaurant in Negombo

This family restaurant is on Colombo Road in Negombo and offering Sri Lankan food. They have only a limited number of choices (chicken / fish / some vegetable curries). There were also a small selection of Chinese dishes as well as buriyani.


We had chicken and vegetable curries.


They also have a bakery and offer fish buns, pastries and cakes. At the restaurant, they offered coffee and I ordered a cappuccino.


The place is fairly clean and spacious.

Nayomi’s Family Restaurant

Address: No. 547/A, Colombo Road, Negombo 11500, Sri Lanka

スリランカ 電車に乗ってみる


































Travelling to Ashgabat the capital of Turkmenistan, Day 1

トルクメニスタン 1日目



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We visited Ashgabat, Turkmenistan on a work trip.

We hardly had any knowledge about this country (did not know even the name of the capital and where it is located), We managed to get some information via the web but it got us a bit worried as the country seems to be known as the North Korea of Central Asia!!!


This was an extremely rare opportunity for us to visit the country and fortunately our organization could issue us two invitation letters, as it is very difficult to enter Turkmenistan. In all, we stayed 5 nights in Ashgabat.


We flew from Jakarta to Ashgabat via Dubai. Ashgabat airport was really clean and shiny like a 5 star-hotel. But we hardly saw anyone there. Surprisingly, almost 30% of the passengers in our flight were Japanese and they seemed to be traveling on an organized tour. We wondered why they have chosen Turkmenistan for their holiday destination but we did not have a courage to ask them…


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As instructed by the organization, we queued the line at the visa counter. Unfortunately, there was only one officer handling visa for everyone but it was not a big issue as there were not too many people in the queue. We waited for about 30 minutes.


Our turn came and the invitation letter was accepted without a problem. We paid 19$ each at the counter next door. It said ‘exchange’ but it seemed they are only for payment for visa and no money exchange could be done there.


We paid visa fee and got visa on our passports. We needed to register eyes and fingerprints on a brand-new machine. After that, we proceeded to the immigration counter. We were asked if this was our first time to Turkmenistan and allowed to enter the country.


ashgabat-airport-3We collected our luggage and at the exit and our driver was waiting for us outside. Then again not many people around… Everything is quiet and looked spanking new, very different from Jakarta. Then, the driver informed us that this airport had been opened only 2 days ago. No wonder everything was so spanking clean.



It took about 15 minutes from the airport to reach our hotel. The driver exchanged some US dollars into Manats with a bit better rate than the official rate. The shape of the hotel was interesting as it was the shape of a water drop. We were amazed by the shining interior of the hotel. Really gorgeous indeed!! It was spotlessly clean and with perfect finish. At the same time we arrived, a tour group had also arrived and it took us some time to get checked-in.


toileteriesWe were again pleasantly surprised with the size of our room which seemed to be bigger than our apartment in Jakarta. There was a TV next to the bathtub and it could comfortably accommodate 5 adults. Toiletries were from Bvlgari. At 140US$ per night it was quite reasonable. The hotel is in the middle of nowhere, almost in the middle of a desert. We were too tired to go out or explore the hotel. We just ordered a mushroom soup and smoked chicken salad, which were not too bad.

September 2016

Sri Lanka’s pristine south coast: Mirissa Whale Watching

Whale and dolphin watching in Mirissa is one of the most exciting water activities you can do in Sri Lanka during your holiday. Mirissa is the best place to start your whale and dolphin watching tour in Sri Lanka.


In warm Indian ocean you can see Blue whales, Bryde´s whales, Sperm whales, Fin whales, sometimes Killer whales, and Common dolphins, Bottlenose dolphins, Spinner dolphins, Risso’s dolphins and Striped dolphins. Sometimes you can see turtles and various fish species, for example Bluefin tuna and flying fish.





Usually boats leave at about 7.30am and time they travel depends on when you first see the whale. We came back to shore at about 1pm but previous day they reached to the shore at about 3pm.


I think all the boats are having similar facilities which includes morning tea, breakfast and some snacks with water bottle. But the boat provided by Sri Lankan army seems more stable in their journey with less vibrations compared to the other boats. All the boats race after the whale as they want to make their customers got best view.

The best season for Mirissa whale watching is said to be from November to April. The sea is not a calm and if you tend to get sea sick, it is advisable that you to take seasick pills on the morning of the trip (about 1-2 hours before you enter the boat). 

Cost of a boat trip will range from LKR 4,000 – LKR 6,000. We used Raja and the Wales for our trip which cost LKR 6,000 per person.