Sunday, December 25th, 2016 • Osaka Day 6
07:58 To make up for lost time (we had planned to stay at Osaka originally) and maximise shopping time, we had planned to take the (07:15 – 10:03 Limited express thunderbird 8 from Kanazawa to Osaka station,) 08:05 – 10:39 Limited express thunderbird 10 from Kanazawa to Osaka station, but seeing as we were running tight anyhow, figured we’d put our paid for breakfast tickets to good use. We had hoped to wake early enough and get a soak at the hotel’s public bath. Or maybe we just dreamt about it, because sleeping at 2am doesn’t help you to wake up at 6am.
08:00 The included breakfast was a breakfast buffet. There were very Japanese choices like grilled fish (my fav), Japanese pickles, tamago, omelets, rice and congee; or very English choices like salad, sausages, juices, coffee, bagels and buns. Tastes great enough! Although I’m secretly disappointed there wasn’t bacon bits on the Caesar salad, teehee!
09:03 – 11:37 Limited express thunderbird 14 from Kanazawa to Osaka station, ¥4750, covered by JR pass. Spent most of the trip napping and the last 10 minutes haphazardly putting on make up, probably very unsightly to most Japanese. There’s something about how well kept Japanese young girls to old ladies, that makes one just feel impolite to not wear some makeup, and hide those flawed blemishes. Played with my new reindeer clips, thought it’ll be fun, except not many other people were into Christmas festivities, Hummm.
12:15 Shinsaibashi 心斎橋. A district in Chuo-ku ward of Osaka, and contains Shinsaibashi-suji 心斎橋筋 a major covered shopping street that runs east of Midosuji street, is a well known and enduring symbol of the city. Established as a major shopping district since Edo period and with a history of 380 years, is currently 600 meters full of chain stores, brand names, individual boutiques and restaurants of all kinds.
Address: 〒542-0085 Shinsaibashi 1 ~ 2 chome, Namba, Chuo-ku, Osaka City.
Personally, I find shopping at Shinsaibashi kind of hectic with the crowds, and today, it’s packed with tourists and locals alike. Since time is tight for me, I merely take a quick look around some of my favourite stores, and obviously the signature photograph with the Glico man.
12:50 Maison de gigi. Something about their small colourful waffles with strawberry sprinkles, just made me wanna sink a bite on it, so we got one strawberry ¥250, and one chocolate ¥170, yum yum!
13:02 Glico Man. Just a couple more steps and across the road, is Ebisubashi and the iconic logo of Osaka in Japan and the confectionary company Glico. This prominent billboard installed in 1935, depicts a giant runner on a blue track crossing the finish line in victory. The sign has been altered couple times to celebrate World Cup and to support Osaka baseball team, Hanshin tigers; the current poster is the 6th design made with led lights.
There’s also a lot of other very prominent billboards in this vicinity, such as the asahi angel rings on top of the opposite building; and the kani doraku a 6 meter crab waving its arms that was built in 1960 and inspired many similar imitations; Kuidaore Taro a drum playing clown installed in 1950. A walk along Dotonbori will reveal many of these.
13:17 Don Quijote (Donki) 激安の殿堂 ドンキホーテ. One of the best places to find cheap stuff in Japan, this warehouse style discount chain store, with over 160 locations within Japan, and carries a whole range of products from cosmetics to clothing to groceries and snacks to household goods, and some even carries luxury brands. The great thing about shopping here, is their stores often open very late, from 10AM to the following 3AM or 5AM if not 24-hours!
So I have tried allotting a whole night, thinking with their mass of products that I’ll easily spend that time rummaging through the store, plus skimping on lodgings that night. Unfortunately, before couple hours was up, my consciousness and muscle just wanted to give up, and ended up having to book lodgings in a rush, hehe, but then that’s the spontaneity and excitement of travel ;} Anyway, this time we only had an hour or so, and a quick sweep was all it allowed, aww.
14:33 Had to quickly rush to take the train at Namba station, as that was closer now than going back to Shinsaibashi station.
14:46 – 14:52 Osaka City Subway Midosuji line for Nakamozu, from Namba (Subway) station to Tennoji station, ¥240 covered by our pass.
15:00 アンスリー convenience store, got two rice balls before my flight, 焼たらこ ¥135,
明太マヨネーズ ¥125, total ¥260.
15:17 – 15:50 Limited express Haruka 35, Tennoji (JR) station to Kansai kuko, ¥1060, covered with our pass.
16:40 Line up check-in was long with 15~20 minute wait, and the desk staff didn’t like how I flew with one passport, entered the country with another, and returning to my home country with a third piece of ID, hehe, effects of internationalism. (REMINDER TO SELF: HK express Does have online check in, just because peach airlines does not) Kelvin had to leave in a hurry. Being still slightly early for my flight, I cross customs and wandered around the airport duty free shops, and bought some snacks and stuff. Also got another two more rice balls and a small drink for the flight.
Original schedule: 17:45 – 21:10 KIX-HKG, ¥10780
17:20 Bought a small drink from the vending machine, ¥130. Yep, with the very very small amount of cash K had left me, a grand total of ¥250.
17:29 Also bought three more onigiri from a convenience store while waiting to board my flight, yep, I love em. おかか ¥150, 梅 ¥150, うめ ¥150. Yeah, I know the last two is the same, but I was curious. And yeah, I didn’t have enough cash so I had to swipe my credit card for those couple onigiris, sounds excessive eh.
17:44 HK express. The flight was slightly delayed and we just start boarding now. They gave me a exit door row, which allowed me to stretch my legs, but not to recline the seat. Unfortunately, there’s a couple who took my seat, and after double checking three times, the couple still didn’t believe me and a flight attendant had to check out tickets. Sigh. When a nurse does her checking, she CHECKS thoroughly. Anyway, the week was great, had some nice sights, but there’s just something more complete about making the trip together and flying back together, which ends the week on a rather less joyous note. Doesn’t help that I got a full PAN shift on tomorrow, a Monday *dreads*. Listen to some music, brood a little, ate my rice balls,
21:10 Plane lands, another trip officially over. Oh, and being too lazy to cook but wanting something hot to eat, I ate my remaining onigiri at McD along with a hot soup I ordered, while flipping through photos in Japan, and they started playing the theme song of ≪Kimi no Na Wa 君の名は≫. As if just to remind you, till next time. Can’t wait to go back…
16:50 – 19:40 KIX to HKG, 22580