Sunday, October 15, 2017

Cambodia 2017 - August

First time visiting Phnom Penh, Cambodia. I am visiting my bro who I have known for 17 years. He has been working in China for the past 20 over years. Just last year he set up his own company in Cambodia so he invited me over for a short break.

As everything is provided for, accommodation (his apartment) and food since I am with him unless he went customer entertainment, I brought a mere USD 200 as I don't know what to expect. 

This is him, light blue shirt with a sling bag bringing me to his car. He had a Lexus RX as his daily ride because he told me almost all the luxurious cars in Cambodia is a Lexus. Mercedes or BMW is a rare scene here. 

Just when he stop in front of this pick up, I asked him where is his Lexus. He had let his employee to drive the Lexus to see customers while he took the pick up. It's a 4.4 Nissan. Most cars here are 3.0 and above.

Mind you, this is a bidirectional traffic. The road is still under construction and a Prius is stuck not able to move forward or backwards. We had to reverse all the way back. 

He stays near the Russian market, nothing Russian but just another market for souvenir hunters and also a wet market. 

The view from his apartment. I didn't go anywhere really. My main aim to visit a friend or brother only.

This is the Russian market. There are many factory outlet stores around this area.

This is the largest factory outlet here. There are many others smaller ones which you will really spoiled for choice. Whatever brands you can think of. You never know what to expect. All are authentic as you might be asking, the price is unbelievably low. There are many Chinese tourists on weekend hunting for bargains.

I bought so much that I was offered a VIP card. I only had it for less than a day as big bro snatched it away from me. He told me that he didn't even managed to get one despite staying in Cambodia for a year. 

Tuk tuk is the cheapest and most common transportation. It's actually a motorcycle towing a trishaw just like the one in the background. I am going to AEON to hunt for some Tomica.

Here we are. It took me 5 USD from home to AEON. Big bro got entertainment so I had to entertain myself.

I found it. Was excited for a moment.

Quite a disappointment on the choice of Tomica variety here. No AEON Tomica, most models are not popular for most collectors. 

Some Tomica display at the toy department.

With some training from my good friend, Pooh. I am not giving up so easily. I asked the shop assistant if there are any new stocks in the warehouse or their inventory. Unfortunately, they cannot understand much English. Just then I saw a key hole on the display, I asked the assistant to open it as I suspect there might be more Tomica in it.

There is almost nothing inside. Just managed to find 2 pcs of #54 Honda Civic FN2.

There are also some other toy shops in the mall but the selection of Tomica is no better. I should be back to Cambodia soon, not for Tomica for sure.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Greece 2017 - July

 Monastriraki Flea market is one place I have to go when I visit Athens. There is a flea market and also an antique street where there are a number of antique shops like this one above.

 Walking through the flea market.

 7 years ago, I was attracted by this shop because there are many toy cars in the shop. Owner told me that he will wind up this business in August 2010. Just to return to see if anyone taking over the shop. It looks like the shop was closed for a full 7 years already.

I found a number of toy cars in one of the antique shop. The cream of the crop has to be this Tomica.

Here are the rest of the cars I bought from the same shop.

Cyprus 2017 - July

I have not set my foot in Cyprus for 7 years. This time coming with Emirates since Singapore Airlines doesn't fly to Athens any more so I am transiting in Dubai instead.

 View from my hotel.

 Actually was better than I expected.

Locals told me that this is a very good hotel. Staff are friendly, they have a nice pool, breakfast is much better than previous hotels I stayed.

The hotel staff recommended this restaurant if I wanted authentic Cypriot or Greek cuisine. It took me 10 to 15 mins walk from hotel. 

I order my favourite lamb as usual.

On the way back to hotel, I walked into a provision store.  

I was attracted by the Majorette display since I started buying Majorette recently again.

I bought some cars here as they are old stock which some are as old as late 90s. Seems like the kids in Cyprus doesn't play with toys. I stayed in Cyprus for 2 days before flying to Athens for the weekend.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Japan 2017 - June

Back to Tokyo once again.

This time putting up in Hyatt Shinjuku

Room is consider huge by Japanese standard

Saw a real life Tomica Hato Bus on the street

A mini car shop boss shared his collection with me. This is extremely rare 1/50 Diapet Fairlady. I never seen this before so I took a photo of it.

Meeting up my gang as usual. They are all the moderators from another group in Japan. Sorry, one of my friend doesn't like being in the lime light.

One member share with us his detailing and custom on Tomica cars.

Our trip is accompanied by a Honda N Box.

The car has compact dimensions but the space in it is enormous.

Our friend also come to pick us up in a Crown to bring us to a toy museum. We went there some time ago and we are revisiting again this trip.

Amazing right? There are about 20,000 Tomica not to mention other makes of toy cars.

Saw a Midget for the first time when we went to a mini car shop. That's all folks. Hoping to visit Japan soon.