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Osaka – 01

October 24, 2010

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Where to begin? After flying into KIX in the evening – we had a long and fumbly introduction to the Japanese railway system. Lesson 1: Local (all stops) trains are a tortuously slow way to get into the city. It took us a few goes to realise that when our train occasionally stopped dead at a station for 10 minutes and everyone bar us got off, we should probably follow the purposeful hordes to catch the beautiful express train waiting on the other side of the platform.

Have I mentioned that air-conditioned express trains are beautiful? They are BEAUTIFUL.

Sooo, we were tired, and sweaty from the heat and dragging our luggage around (even though it was the middle of the night, it was SO HOT!) – when we managed to take the wrong subway exit, and got lost on the way to the hotel. Whoops!

And then it started to rain…

Thankfully, the people we asked on the street were so incredibly helpful! Even the dude who had never heard of the street we were after – stopped to pore over our rain-soaked map to try to help us out. In the end, a nice lady stopped and looked up our hotel on her cellphone – and then proceeded to give us a stream of directions in Japanese. Luckily, I heard the words “conbini” and “left”, so we were able to muck our way through, and get there at last!

Arietta Hotel Osaka
The cute little care package left on our beds

Arietta Hotel Osaka
Jason tries to take a photo of our room. All 18 square metres of it

Of course – the next thing on the agenda was DINNER 😀

After wandering around the area a bit, we managed to find a little salaryman-filled izakaya around the corner, where our piggy brains did the ordering. An izakaya is a kind of restaurant where you can drink alcohol and eat (usually in equal quantities hehe). The idea is to order lots of small plates to share. (There are plenty of izakayas in Sydney, like Wagaya, or Fujiya in Chinatown)

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I love the relaxed vibe. Full of people winding down after work.

Edamame

First up, edamame – an izakaya staple. I love edamame, and always order it in Japanese restaurants in Sydney, but HONESTLY!! These were so fresh!! I think most edamame served in Sydney restaurants come from a frozen pack (which are also sold in the freezers of asian grocery stores), and then thawed before being served. As a result, they sometimes look a little greyish. But these were so bright green! The shells were crisp and fresh, and the beans were so sweet.

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Of course, being our first meal in Kansai – we had to have Okonomiyaki! It was served on a hotplate, with the bonito flakes wiggling in the air.

Sashimi
Sashimi

Yakisoba
Yakisoba

School prawns
School Prawns – these were really tasty

350 yen cocktails
¥350 cocktails! Woohoo. This one is lychee liqueur and fresh berries.

Jason gets acquainted with Japanese TV
Jason gets acquainted with the wonders of Japanese TV

After eating our fill, we crawled back to the hotel and went to sleep. Phew! Long day!

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. October 24, 2010 9:35 pm

    Oh hooray! A Japan series!!! Reading your post reminded me of our trip to Japan, and just how lovely, friendly and HELPFUL all Japanese people are!!!

    • October 25, 2010 11:00 pm

      Hehehe yesss… I’m definitely a bit slow with blogging, but hopefully I’ll get through it all! I want to remember everything!

      The Japanese people were DEFINITELY my favourite thing about travelling there. They are just so amazing!!! Makes travelling such a joy!

  2. October 28, 2010 9:40 pm

    I’m crying with Japanenvy

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