Tag Archives: osaka

Japan Day 10 & 11: Mostly food & Nostalgia, and GIRLS’ LIPS =0

4 Sep

On August 1st, I rolled my butt out of the fold out bed, tried to make my face not look like a melting mess, and set out for my full day of Osaka adventure by myself. Nicole had to work until the afternoon so I was on my own to visit my old haunts and be a creepy lady on the streets of Osaka until evening.

I hit up Namba and the Minami Osaka area first and worked my way north through all of the shops that I used to like to frequent.

Can't start the day without a proper breakfast. To the Chococro! The most delicious chocolate croissants ever! And of course, some sort of mystery mayonaise corn pizza kinda thing.

When I saw this, I first thought, oh my god it's THAT damn hot here that they'd want a -2 degrees celcius bar to hang out in?? WTF! Then, later, I found out that they meant the BEER was super cold. Not the room. HURR HURR.

This is super messed up, but I regret not getting these. FIRST OF ALL: ZIMA is still a thing in Japan. It has been sicne it came out, unlike its debut in the US where it came out, flopped, and was tagged the drink of losers. SECOND OF ALL: This is part of a new promotion, where each bottle comes with a set of lips. ACTUAL MOLDS OF MODELS' LIPS. They're rubber, and you put them around the mouth of the zima bottle. When you drink from it, it's as if YOU ARE KISSING THAT MODEL'S LIPS. How. Messed. Up. Is That. But I love it.

More insanity after the jump:

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Japan Day 8 & 9: By my one-sy to Osaka: Food, Rilakkuma, More Food.

29 Aug

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.

Sushi "sandwiches" with ride and nori on the outside. So yummy!

Yakisoba sandwich, and salmon roe onigiri. I was a little piggy and ate all of this.

More of this post after the jump!

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Japan Day 6: Osaka nostalgia and Eimi’s Art Show!

15 Aug

The next day I was pretty sleepy and groggy, but managed to human-up and get out to lunch with Caro to meet up with Nico and Chikuwaemil! They are both fantastic artists, and such nice people. It was Caro and my first time meeting them in person, though we had worked together before on a few projects for about half a year or so.  They both live in rather far out places of Osaka, and were so nice to come into central Osaka to come and meet us!

We went down to eat at the Dig Me Out Cafe, which was right below our cafe, and also the venue where the art exhibition we were in town for was set up! Eimi was the main artist for this show, but she had just finished hanging that morning and ran off to a meeting so she wasn’t able to join us for lunch.

Left to right: Me, NICO, Chikuwaemil, and Caro

Emi’s exhibition was already hung by the time we got to the cafe for lunch so we looked around and signed her guestbook!

Nico signing the guestbook.

Someone had gotten Emi this really cute panda bouquet!

We walked around Shinsaibashi a bit and looked at some stores before Nico had to leave to get some work done. Chikuwaemil and Caro stayed together and shopped some more, but I took a mini siesta back at the hotel because I wasn’t feeling so hot. When I awoke from my mini-nap, Caro and Chikuwa were in the middle of something, so I just took a quick walk around the Shinsaibashi and Namba area to visit all of my old stomping grounds quickly.

A view from the famous Doutonbori bridge. TONS of signs light up the sky at night. Thank god it was a nice cool and overcast day for once so I didn't die of heat exhaustion. This is the spot where I used to hang out with my current boyfriend and drink beers and eat a hot meat bun while talking about stuff late into the night. Ahhh, romance.

Another view of the signs next to the Dotonbori river.

After that, it was time for Eimi’s Exhibition’s opening party so I scooted back to the hotel and met up with Caro, Chikuwaemil and Emi there 🙂

Left to right: Eimi, Miho (one of Chikuwa's artist friends), and Chikuwaemil!

Info on the show

2 visitors to the gallery. I loved this girl's little pink horns and the eyeballs on her sailor jacket!

My friends that I was hanging out with the night before showed up too, and we all chatted and made new friends throughout the night and talked art. I took a ton more photos, which you can see here!

Around 10:30 or so we were super tuckered out, so Caro and I headed back to our hotel room to sleep forever and ever, and pack up to head back to Tokyo again the next day! (whirlwind trip, no?) We had a fashion show to attend back in Tokyo the following day, so our stay in Osaka was very short (though I came back for epic adventures once that was done).

In the morning Eimi was nice enough to meet us for a quick breakfast before we hopped on the bullet train back.

Eimi was SO CUTE and drew us both pictures! You can see her on the left flipping through one of her books and the adooorable sketch here!

After that we said our goodbyes and got on our train heading back northeast! The art show was really fun and I’m glad we were able to schlep down for one day to see it!

Here’s a quick extra picture of Caro’s apple juice bottle she bought on the train…

The girl says "I'm helping my mom with chores!" in the first box. Then in the second box.. uhh... sheep.

You can see the rest of the photos I didn’t post on my blog here! Be back tomorrow for an EXTREEEME update on the HARAJUKU KAWAII!! fashion show hosted by ASOBISYSTEM and some BEARBRICKS info about their massive display up in the PARCO department store in Shibuya!

‘Till next time!

Japan Day 5: Cruisin in Harajuku, Crashin in Osaka

11 Aug

Ah Wednesday! July 27th, we shim-shammied on over to Harajuku for some work meetings, some of which involved taking these photos, and some of which involved sitting in a tiny office talking numbers for a while. Eek!

It was a nice breezy day in Harajuku, so we were amped to be able to walk around and take it in a bit without burning our faces off int he hot hot sun.

Good old Sausage roll and matcha green tea for breakfast. Thanks Starbucks Japan! Or as thy call them, "Sta-ba"

Chillin on the street like a hoodlum, rocking my Garfield x The Hundreds T-shirt.

Walking around Harajuku, I took some quick snaps on the way to meeting up with our other teammates for today’s adventures!

Walking past Lotteria, I noticed they were advertising Choco... CORN??? WHAT?

I didn't have time to look at these closely, but these multifaceted pastel chains are craaayzay cute!

Doing some re-con in the 7-11. Pepsi released a "Caribbean Gold" flavor for the summer. It taste like Sprite but less citrusy.

I love this crazy cat fabric! It was on the sleeve of a big oversized shirt.

Some cute yukata displays in LaForet

After meeting up with our bros, we took a short walk around Harajuku for everyone to do some shopping and visit a few stores they wanted to see. Poor Caro had been running around in meetings all week so she hadn’t had any free time to shop at all =0

Nadia!

When we arrived in front of  Nadia, Tavuchi informed us that this store was pretty famous in Harajuku for its selection of cute fashion goods, and their own original goods made especially for that store. The  red, white, and black platform sneakers that’ve been getting so much attention in street snaps lately are also sold here. I haven’t figured out if they are sold exclusively at Nadia or not, but I have found several other versions of the shoes around the web, after some research 🙂

Interestingly, when I was poking around in there, one of the shop staff came up to me and told me she recognized me from Tavuchi’s blog o.0 She was really cute, and she was pretty excited when I told her Tavuchi was there with me and pointed her out (she was busy browsing behind a rack of clothing).

I got a cute pterodactyl earring there ❤ and hummed and hawwed over the shoes, but they were just too expensive, unfortunately. The yen is pretty unforgivable right now!

My Dino earring I got from Nadia!

After that we headed over to G2? (Pronounced as “G two question), a cute thrift store that Caro wanted to revisit. When we got in there, lo and behold we saw our friend Kayo’s (formerly of the Polysics) line of “Kayowl” earrings in there too! So cute!

Poofy!

We stopped by one of Tavuchi's favorite stores off of Takeshita dori and she picked up this awesome Ziggy nightshirt!

I noticed on Tavuchi's blog a few days ago that she had done some DIY to it, and now it looks like this! So cute!

After that we hopped on over for a crepe break! Right around this time Tavuchi got mobbed by a SPANK! fangirl, which was pretty funny. Apparently she said to Tavuchi, in Japanese: “I’m your fan…! But.. only a little. Can I take your photo?” HAHA. After I heard that story, I taught Tavuchi the English phrase “Backhanded compliment.” Sigh. Haters gotta hate.

MISCHIEF MANAGED! this yummy Mille Feuille crepe got devoured in less than a minute after this photo was taken, haha.

Tavuchi!

Yoshitaka, Caro's translator! He's a super nice guy, but I've already warned him to watch out for the Yoshitaka fan club, which will surely form now that I've put this photo on the internet haha.

After that, though we had to say our goodbyes and hop on the bullet train to Osaka. Off to the land of awesome! I was excited to see all of my old friends there, but first, for a luxurious train ride ❤

Yum! Train bento!

Oh hello tiny tiny soy sauce bottle. Nomnom.

Here was Caro's bento set! So cute! She drew the little face on herself, hehe.

Yeahh I may have partied a little with a can of Chu-hi and some snacky bits. Caro was super sweet and bought us lunch and snacks ❤ Thank you Caro!

Trains are the bet way to travel ❤ you get to see the actual lay of the land and relax to the maximus.

We arrived We arrived in Osaka in the evening, and luckily our hotel was pretty close to the station. Caro was feeling a little under the weather so she stayed behind to rest up while I went out to meet some of my old Osaka pals and get some drinks. This night was pretty fucking epic, and reminded me of how crazy things were back when I lived in Japan. I’m only going to post a few “normal-ish” photos, but you can use your imagination to see where the rest of the night went, haha.

I went to the Suntory Old Bar that I used to work at in Shinsaibashi,met up with with my long lost freind Nicole, who I used to teach in Japan with, and went out for a long night of izakaya madness after.

Me and Nicole, the dup that struck fear into the hearts of every bar we went into. Oh, my dear Nicole, I hate not living in the same town as you anymore ;.;

And then some things started occurring.

So, funny story, we started out with a party of 4 at our table, myself NIcole, and her two house mates Trevor and Drew (the non-asians in the photo). After abuot 1 hour of sitting there, we aquired half of the Kyoto Ballroom Dance Club who was sitting behind us and were now our BFF. WHAT. THE. HELL. OSAKA.

Who are these dudes? I have no idea. They tried to teach us some fancy ballroom dance moves. The waiters kept telling us to PLEASE STOP DANCING IN THE AISLES. Oh god it was epic.

After that things sort of got out of control and basically, I ended up back at my hotel at 5am-ish, knowing I was in for the hangover of the century the next day. I am a winner winner, chicken dinner.

So that sums up this day, which was mostly just a bit of work, followed by hanging out, and insane partying.

As always, the rest of the photos from this day can be found here!

Now it’s time to gussy up and get ready for an epic night of nerd-domom at the Iam8Bit Art show opening tonight! Wish me nerd-luck!

Osaka, land that I love.

19 Mar
Recently, Will introduced me to JanneM’s flicker profile. This man is a very talented photographer, as well as a neuroscientist of some kind, who now lives in Osaka, close to where Will and I used to live. his photos are making me EXTREMELY nostalgic. A lot of them are just plain beautiful. It took me 3 days to get through his entire Flickr set. It’s really lovely, and I suggest putting aside some time to look at them, too, if you’re ready for heart wrenching nostalgia to hit you fast. So excited to go to Japan! I’ll be going there in a week to visit old friends, be nostalgic, and do a tiny bit of business..

My favorites:

Who needs sign twirlers? NOT THIS GUY. BTW Media Cafe Popeye is awesome.
Signholder by JanneM.

Happy Drunken Salaryman
Party Commuter by JanneM.

Cute asian children
Children and umbrellas by JanneM.

Ridiculously overpriced Hokkaido melons. 15750 yen is about $180USD.melon by JanneM.

Late night ramen at the corner. I think this is the one on the edge of Dotonbori.
Ramen stand by JanneM.

Cute girls selling Christmas cakes. Reminds me of Hagu.Happy salesgirls by JanneM.

Before Will and I started dating, he would come to the bar I worked at on Monday nights and drink there until it closed at midnight. Then we’d get some chu-his and pork buns from the convenience store and walk over to the river and sit right here and stare at the Don Quixote Ferris wheel at night. Good memories.
Don Quixote Ferris wheel by JanneM.

My host bros.
Gigolos by JanneM.

Sakura viewing by Osaka Castle.Hanami at Osaka-jo by JanneM.Hanami parties under the trees by JanneM.

So excited. Overly nostalgic.