Sunday, March 18, 2007

Osaka, the big city

One of the first things which struck me about Osaka is how big it felt, in some ways even bigger than Tokyo, though it has about 10? times less the population. Yoshiko and I talked about it and we came to the decision this was because of its concentration. Tokyo can be said to be multiple cities, spread out over a large area with each ku having its own "downtown" area of high rises around the stations and such. Osaka has but one downtown core, right at the center of a convergence of rail lines and highways. On our one afternoon in the city, we headed down to the Doutombori area to check things out and I now see why the Lonely Planet book says it has a definite "Bladerunner" feel with the neon signs and crowded streets.


At some point, we looked up and were surprised to see and odd shaped rainbow up over our heads. It seemed to be curving outwards, I guess due to our point of view. Glad I managed to get a shot of it.


With Sebastien and Luc off to enjoy some Sumo, we opted for a night view experience and headed to the massive Umeda Sky Building in the city's North area.


After climbing the 40 stories to the observation deck at the top, we got quite the view.



Here is the 5 of us, cold, but happy!


And a final parting shot.


After a little misfortune on the trains, Luc and Sebastien were quite a bit late meeting up with us, but we managed to find a fantastic place for Oconomiyaki nonetheless. Osaka style oconomiyaki is my favourite and this little shop was run by an old master with quite the character. Chatting it up with us in between taking care of the grill, he really made the experience worth it for all of us. Heck, he even gave Sebastien a little spatula to take home with him. A great end to our Osaka experience, though it was admittedly a short one.

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