Osaka...there and back again

Good morning everyone,

Are you glad to hear that rainy season is over? On one hand, it's nice that the weather is more predictable. But on the other hand, it means that the mercury rarely dips below 25C and hovers above 30C for days and days (and weeks and weeks) with humidity levels that are through the roof.

I went to Osaka on the weekend. For the two or three of you who read my blog regularly, you may have noticed that it was late yesterday...that's why.

While I've been to Osaka a few times for work and once for a marathon, it was my first time to really be a tourist. It was really fun, but tiring. I don't think there was a single place I went to where I didn't have to stand in line. After dropping off my bag at the hotel, the first place I headed to was the 'Glico' man, which is a huge sign in the middle of the shopping district.
glico man
I'm not sure why, but it has become a photo spot for people who copy his pose.

Anyway, that whole area-it's called Dotonbori, by the way-that whole area was just a massive crush of people. I saw quite a few Chinese and Korean tourists, but the vast majority of people were still Japanese. The place is just one big tourist trap. It was so an assault on the senses-all the sounds, smells and sights were so overwhelming...I was tired within about 10 minutes of getting there. It was insane and I hope I never go there again...ha ha! At least on a long weekend, anyway.

We are so Tokyocentric in Japan that it's easy to forget that Osaka is a big city too.

Of course we had takoyaki and a beer and then got the heck out of Dotonbori and headed to Nanba. Don't go to this place on  a weekend, unless you're prepared to wait for like an hour...
glico man takoyaki

While Nanba was busy-it was a long weekend, after all-the crowd was a bit older and calmer. Why did I go to Nanba? Well, to see the performance at Nanba Grand Kagetsu, of course.
 

It was a lot different from what I expected...but I'll save that story for another day.

Have a great day!

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