I’m falling a bit behind with these posts (and it feels like it was a lifetime ago…!) but trying to catch up!
On July 30th, I woke up a little tired from a crazy night at the Harajuku Kawaii event, I packed up, said goodbye to Caro, and started the “vacation” portion of my trip! I had buffered in a few extra days at the end of my Japan stay to spend time with my old friends in Osaka, and I was really glad to have the chance to relax and not think about business things for a few days.
Nice long quiet train rides are the bees knees. I tucked into my delicious bento lunch I got and finished most of Tina Fey’s “Bossypants” book in the 2 and a half hours it took me to get to Osaka.
More of this post after the jump!
I arrived in Osaka and switched over to the Subway…. and was greeted by this guy:
I met my friend Nicole in Hommachi and we had some delicious lunch before heading over to Osaka Castle park (known as Osakajou Koen) for a barbeque. Yeah, that’s right, we ate lunch then went to go eat again cos that’s how we roll.
Osaka Castle has a huge park built around it with moats and things, so it’s a really nice place to setup a barbeque, drink a bunch of beers (no open container laws in Japan! Still a novelty to me after all these years haha), and enjoy the view.
We ate lots of meat, consumed tons of beers, and got bitten by a lot of mosquitoes well after the sun set. After a few rounds of “throw balls around and try to hit them back, except we’re all non-athletic so we kept hitting passersby,” we decided to hit up some cheap karaoke near their apartment.
We were all getting pretty tipsy since the karaoke had all-you-can-drink included in the room rate. We had assembled this mass of people that are all either Nicole’s roommates, or friends of them. We danced around a lot and played tambourines and sang SO SO SO many songs.
After our 2 hours of karaoke madness was up, half of our group decided to keep the party going and head to a bar called “Bambi” nearby. It was really cute, because inside, there were a ton of cute Disney Bambi plushies and decorations inside. I’m really kicking myself for not taking any photos in the bar, haha.Well, the main reason I didn’t take photos was because I spent half of the time trying not to kill this belligerent drunk random guy.
Some jerk in the bar decided he needed to get all up in my face and keep calling me a Yankee because of my hair. Wow, what? Japan, why you make me fight you? Also, what the hell kind of insult/dumb thing is that to say? I kept telling him to back off/also, I’M NOT JAPANESE and he kept following me around the bar, saying it over and over, and starting the whole “WHY DO YOU SPEAK ENGLISH IF YOU’RE ASIAN?”-thing. Ughh. What is it with the combination of me + bars + creepy guys in Japan who follow me? The last time this happened, I had to throw a drink on a guy, but mind you this was back in 2006. Or maybe it was 2007.
AAaaannyway, the guy eventually got pulled away by some of my friends and that was the end of that. I’m pretty proud of myself that it didn’t disolve into violence 🙂 Instead, it ended in us going to a 24-hour diner-type place, and getting awesome food. I ordered a corn mayo pizza in honor of Will, because he loves those haha.
I think we must have wandered back to Nicole’s apartment around 4am or something ridiculous. I passed out on the couch to ready myself for another day of sweet sweet hanging out for the next day.
The next morning, I woke up freakishly early, like around 9am or something, and of course, everyone else in the house was dead asleep. I rolled around for a bit in the heat before I finally headed outside to grab some breakfast and bask in the air conditioning at the convenience store.
Everyone else in the house rose from the dead much later after that while I entertained myself with my noodles and finishing off reading “Bossypants.”
Nicole tossed me a scrapbook that our mutual friend Theryl had made for her for her birthday a few years ago… it was full of totally awesome and cry-worthy memories of our time living in Japan together. Nicole, Theryl, and Michelle K. (2 michelle’s, one group! Madness!), and I were a really tight-knit group of friends and were totally family to each other back in the day. It was nice to have a surrogate family when everyone’s real relatives were a whole world away.
Wowww yeah sorry about that tangent there, but nostalgia!! I love it! It’s great to have friends that I can always immediately reconnect with no matter how long I haven’t seen them or how far apart we are physically.
Right around when I finished looking at the scrapbook, Nicole and her fiance Tashi were raring to go for some sushi lunch times in Umeda. Nothing like a little kaitenzushi to start the day!
We went off to poke around Umeda, and I remembered that there was the Rilakkuma summer fair happening, thanks to these billions of posters all over the station:
In this section around Umeda station, there are lots of cute character goods stores! Get ready to die of cute:
After shopping a bit, we walked over to a new shopping building called Luca, which was about 20 stories high and built in to the huge addition they made to the JR railway station there.
After that, we headed back to Nicole’s place since it was pretty late. On the way home, we saw a funny ad for a manga… I cannot understand what this is saying.
Can anyone tell me what the hell this manga is about?
Alright, that’s it for now. I realize this post is ridiculously long at this point, haha. WHOOPS.
I’ll continue to interrupt these Japan posts with updates on actual Chubby Bunny design things, too ❤ Don’t you worry! As always, more and more photos of this day and my previous days in Japan can be found on my Flickr.