Back From The Far East Part Deux!

Guess who's back everybody? Well, yeah, it's not much of a guess is it since this is my blog and what other weirdo would be writing this post except yours truly? But that's beside the point because yes, I'm back after taking time to train in the mountains, subsisting off the land, fighting off bears, wolves, and rude gerbils, and raising my power level to well over 9000 so I can vanquish the evil that taints the purity of our proud land!

Or I was just slacking off playing video games and wearing out the stuffing in my pillows by sleeping in. Oh, but I did find the time to do some things that may be of slight interest to all of you. Let me give you a taster for what you can expect in the coming weeks of this new season of

First off, JAPAN! After years of yearning, aspiration, and well, lots of procrastination, I finally made it to the fabled land that gave us wonderful things such as Skylines, anime, and delicious soda that refuses to be drunk unless you get that stupid glass ball in just the right place! Obviously Japan has been a bucket list destination for me since I was a wee sprite - after all, my body may be Filipino, my loyalties may be American, but my soul burns for Japan! 

God, who the f*ck writes sh*t like know what, time out you guys. I gotta go punish my writer-monkeys. This is what I get for being too generous with their banana allowances...

Anywho, in case you're wondering how I conquered the daunting task of making my way to and around a country whose language and culture are as foreign to us Americans as customer service is to your local cable company I basically cheated by joining the DSport Tokyo Auto Salon Tour 2017. Thanks to the kind help of the DSport crew I was able to see and do all of the following cool things that I'll soon be telling you all about:

OH YES! That legendary storage area for all of Nissan's historic goodness, only accessible to those who know the secret handshake and have a Nissan chassis code tattooed on the base of their neck (maybe) - Zama, a.k.a. the Nissan DNA Garage! Prepare your bodies for more car porn than you can possibly handle!

If Zama isn't enough concentrated Nissan awesomesauce then how about a visit to Nismo headquarters? I'll be showering you with pics of their display area, store, and of course the legendary TOILETS! (I got a pic of the ladies side too - keep that on the down low...) 

And I almost forgot, we also went to this big building that said Nissan Global Headquarters on it. Nothing special I guess so moving on...

It wouldn't be much of a Tokyo Auto Salon Tour if we didn't go to Tokyo Auto Salon so you can look forward to lots of pics of this...

...and this, since we got VIP passes and all. No, in case you're wondering, the VIP pass doesn't impress the models. A little bit of Japanese and a teaspoon of politeness helps though.

If looking at cars just standing still doesn't do it for you then you might want to stick around for the post on the DSport Tuner meet at Mobara Twin Circuit where we got to see ludicrous amounts of drift action with a tiny helping of time attack to spice things up. Some dudes from a little-known series called D1GP also showed up and offered to let us ride in their cars. It was rude to say no so we took them up on the offer. They did a horrible job of keeping their cars going in a straight line and preserving their tires but they were such nice guys though. Maybe that's why everybody kept raving about these two dudes named NOB and Ueno-san. I only asked for their autographs 'cause they were such nice guys...they can't possibly be famous right?

Aside from that we tossed in some other random stuff:

Like hitting up mythical Akihabara several times...and on one of those trips found ourselves following a stranger into some dark alley...and ending up in a maid cafe! Yup, plenty of delicious magic was cast that night!

On another night we ended up in the sheer madness that is the Robot Restaurant. It's madness I tell you...and I'm so glad I went!

We also found time to wander into a cat cafe...and tour Tein and Tomei's headquarters...and shop in Yokohama...and drown in cheap booze and excellent fried chicken several nights...and buy random stuff at UpGarage and Super Autobacs...and watch snow fall on some weird robot thing called a Gunmad, or Goddamn, or something. Yup, it was a pretty fun and crazy trip. Where do I sign up for next year?

Oh, but Japan isn't the only thing I have in store for you, my dear readers. After being deported by Japanese immigration for having gone over my quota of fun-having I crept off to my old home of the Philippines and did some more fun-having over there.

Stick around and I'll tell you all about drag racing, Filipino-style, as I cover the first round of the National Drag Racing Championships (North). You'll get to see cool stuff ranging from the native... the just plain nuts:

And then after that I'll talk about test driving the Nissan Navara NP300 - the truck that should eventually replace our aged USDM Frontier whenever Nissan deems us worthy:

This being you can of course expect more of the usual randomness to creep in as well in the coming weeks and months. In the meantime I'll bid you sayonara with some grateful acknowledgements from my trip:

- Thanks to Mike Ferrara, Mikiko, Tyler, Yuko, Mikiko's sister who I can't remember the name of to save my life (Sumimasen, Mikiko and your sister - insert dogeza here) and Big Tom who served as our gracious guides and hosts on the DSport Tour.  
- Thanks to all my fellow tour attendees who were just simply a great bunch of people to hang with.
- Thanks to Nissan, Nismo, Tein, Tomei, and UpGarage, for the tours of their facilities and the free swag.
- Thanks to Ueno-san, his family, and all the other organizers and attendees of the DSport Mobara meet. You all are awesome drivers and cool guys and gals in general! 
- Thanks to the staff of Heart Of Hearts Maid Cafe for putting up with a bunch of hungry gaijin who could barely speak any Japanese lol.
- Thanks to Patrick and Pao, fellow R35 owners from the Philippines who kindly welcomed me at the drag racing event
- Thanks to Mr. Herbert Tan and his staff at Mantrade, one of the Philippines' local Nissan dealers, for the cordial welcome.
- And of course, thanks to my family back in the Philippines for always making sure I have a second home to come back to.


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