Osaka // Namba & Umeda
2016 // 12 // 26
Have you ever been so excited but your momentum was just drained? Excitement's good. But remember to recharge! I learned the hard way when I traveled to the Osaka Castle. Travel bloggers always tell you how important it is to charge your gadgets, but looks like I forgot to do so! Luckily, my phone was always on high battery, so I still got some good photos that day.
My cousin's wife chose hotels that were always near the train stations for easy travel. The Namba plaza–if I can call it that–is a pretty interesting, diverse place. There are tons of restaurants, drug stores, pachinko outlets, and other recreational places the people of Osaka hang out at.
We often ate breakfast at McDonald's, for it was quick and familiar. However, Makku Namba didn't have an English menu. Strange noh? Must be the localization. What was interesting though, is we met a Filipino worker there who's been in Osaka for 9 years and counting. It really does take one to know one.
After breakfast, we headed to the station. Our first destination that day was Ikeda, and we went to the Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum first and foremost.
It took us a while before we arrived at Umeda. Umeda Station has a pretty interesting hanging sculpture as seen in the photo I took below. It reminded me of two things: steampunk, and the US Ministry of Magic in Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them. I'm sad there's no Ezra Miller to come with it, though </3.
We arrived at an urban park. There were a lot of skateboarders and yuppies taking a break from work or school. Some of them are so at peace and relaxed, they look like they're at home.
It was still pretty much fall during that December. The seasons were still transitioning, so I still saw a lot of trees that either had orange leaves or were totally balding.
After a few walks, we finally reached the "teaser" of the Osaka Castle. It wasn't the actual castle yet, but the pagoda roofs did give that royal feeling.
The inside vicinity is also filled with interesting characters and figures.
The castle was green, white, and gold, compared to the brown and white of the other buildings. I did get to take a picture with it! However, it was from afar.
So here's the thing. We were supposed to go near the castle, take nicer photos. However, I was stupid enough to not charge the camera battery! I tried reloading it with the extra battery I had in my bag. Even that battery was dead... What was I to do when that was the case? Obviously, I had my phone but eh. I liked my camera too much.
After my genius move, the four of us decided it was time to go shopping. My cousin's wife said Osaka is pretty cheaper than Tokyo, so we did our retail therapy at Namba Park.
My cousin ended up buying some shirts from Play by Comme de Garcons. They were for his mom and for the niece too. Meanwhile I ended up with a beauty haul from Tsuruha Namba drug store that wasn't even every makeup I bought in Japan.
We ended up eating at a restaurant in the plaza where they served Kobe beef. I always liked Japanese beef, but it was different getting to eat Kobe beef itself that was cooked on a teppan grill! I usually eat my steak on a sizzling plate, but this was my first Japanese dish cooked on a grill.
So after a long day at the Instant Ramen Museum, Osaka Castle, and shopping, it was nice to relax to unwind with a good meal. If there's anything this day taught me, it's to charge everything at the end of the day. Traveling excitement dies when your gadgets die. How the hell are you gonna keep those memories in store? So charge your camera, laptop, smart phone, and most importantly, recharge your own energy!