Friday, September 7, 2018

The Massive Challenge Today

- was the photo uploading.

Like I mentioned while I was in Japan, I had a big problem uploading photos on my blog from my mobile phone.

From the time I started to use my android phone, I became slack on using computers, because like all of us know, I didn't need to. Almost everything can be done on your mobile. Almost. That was the only thing that I didn't realize.

Now I figured out that I had to upload them on my computer, I also had to transfer those photos to my PC, from my mobile and my husband's. As I anticipated, it took a long time uploading a huge number of photos. There was also the downer that some of the photos went missing. I searched all folders on my mobile, his mobile on the micro SD disks and even on HDD where the backup copies were.

I can't believe that I've spent over 6 hours today to edit my previous posts from Japan.

I suppose that it's only natural that by finding and uploading those photos brings me back the fond memories of my previous visits to Japan. Just as I write this, I remember that Osaka has a significant Korean population just like Chinese in Yokohama and Nagasaki. I have heard of Tsuruhashi Koreatown in Osaka but decided not to go because my husband can't handle the smell of Kimuchi.

Anyway. I'm only half way through my project. There's other half of Nagasaki I haven't covered yet, and some more I want to write about Nagasaki, and Kamakura, possibly.

For now I have to take a breather, Leave it to tomorrow.

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Collection of photos from the trip to Japan.

Here, I would like to show you some more photos I took in Shibuya and Osaka.

Incide the funky Nepalese (I am not sure if it was the Nepalese cuisine that we ate but the owner and the chefs were Nepalese.) restaurant we dined in on the third night.


Those guys in the photo below must have really been enjoying riding the go-karts in their costume.

Yes. Novelty item is popular in Japan.

Himonya Park. There's this sign telling you not to fish in the pond, but there always are some naughty boys who dare to break the rules.

I thought those guys were girls who looked like boys, but it was the other way around.

Osaka has a reputation of having a big live band scene.
There is a place called American Village where locals fondly call "Ame-mura", it's not like you see many Americans walking pass, actually there was none...but there were many band venues for certain.
In Melbourne not many people are willing to pay for the live band venues, even when the door charge is under $10, but the average door charge including one free drink costs $26 - $35 in Osaka.
Yet, there are many people who chase around their favourite local bands by saving up their pocket money.

The one we checked out was one of the three venues in the same building called Clapper.

There are a couple of good bands there. One is called Dicentra

Here's another band called Ninth Call.

NINthCALL 1st Single "Drug Addiction" Trailer

The song title is a bit of a cliche and I don't like it, but they were awesome in live.

If you're interested in live bands, there are more venues around the area.
BigCat, Zepp, Shinsaibashi Varon are also popular.

Snap shots of average Osaka life.

Bento (Lunch Box) Stall.
Local Shrine.

Neibourhood Okonomi-yaki Shop (that also sells cheap snacks and fizzy drinks). This oba-chan (auntie) was just back from her shopping (you can see the plastic shopping bag lying in the right corner) when I went to buy one with squid in it.

and Meshi-ya (restaurant).

If you are into old trains and the history, here're some photos for you.

Osaka subway Midosuji line celebrated its 85th anniversary, and those little diecast models are the older designs of the trains. 

On the eve of leaving Osaka we headed to Osaka castle, not to go into the building but to see the surroundings. 

A primitive-style house displayed nearby.

As we walked by the moat, we heard the loud, thumping noise coming from the yard next to the main premises of Osaka Castle. We followed the noise and some other crowds heading down there as I checked on the web to see if there was any special event happening at Osaka Castle Park, and then I discovered that it was a big scale live event called "Rush Ball 2018" . 

Amongst the bands played that day was the one called Creepy Nuts. The guy in the right corner of the photo must be the massive supporter of the band.

Once the performance started, those crowds went berserk, jumping up and down, raising their fists, singing along with the bands, the energy was MAX when our favourite TETO went on stage.

 Music Clips

Jump to TETO's Music Clips.

None of the bands were actually commercially successful bands, but this one may be the next big thing. Who knows.

By the time we left the event it was getting late, after 5 pm, most of those tourists on package tour deals were gone and around the moat was quiet and tranquil.   

Walking around the moat was challenging, though. It was massive compared to the Odawara castle's that I was used to.

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Nagasaki Part I

Me and my husband spent 6 nights in Nagasaki, initially we thought it was going to be too long for just one place. We were wrong.

Where we stayed was situated in the middle of local red-light district. (Phew, again!)
The noise was just relentless and kept us awake till the early natuarally we developed the habit of late-start.

Day One.
It wasn't too hard to find the neighbourhood of our accomodation, but the actual building, especially the front part was hidden behind the Cosplay pub (costume play) that it was so easy to miss. When I rang up the owner, she told me to ask at the police station, but I couldn't spot what looked like a police station.

Did you find the police station in this photo? Well if you're wondering, you're like me. The one on the left behind the passing car is the police station, believe it or not.
Yep, this is Nagasaki we're discussing here. Here's the better one.

As you might guess, we were so exhausted from all the walking we did in Osaka and Nara that we didn't do much apart from doing the grocery shopping.

Day Two.
Walked to Dejima Wharf. Almost every tourist destination was in walking distance. We had went to the big cafe by the sea and had coffee with Sakamoto Ryoma's face froating on it. There was a nice park across as well, so we had a decent walk and had lunch there.

By 1pm, we were back in our room.
We had a plan to see the night view from the peak of Inasa Mountain later that night, so we just rested up until 3pm.

We left our room around 4pm. With plenty of time to kill, we decided to have a stroll around the neighbourhood first.
Shianbashi Street mall, just 2 minutes from us was small and narrow, was located opposite from the red light district and most of the shops were restaurants and pubs. There were also a few alleyways, about the width of an average pedestrian path, with tiny Izakayas and Karaokes (those places all had this musty smell, possibly coming from old timber). As we got to the main street, we saw more
shopping malls we would have liked to explore had we had the time. That time, however, we just stopped by Kanko Street shopping mall where we had an early dinner and bought some cheap veggies, then walked further down to the cozier shopping district ahead. The famous Meganebashi (Spectacles Bridge) was just a minute walk from there.

Departed from "Kokaido Mae (Town Hall)" tram stop around 5:30pm.
Mt. Inasa Ropeway wasn't too far away. The weather was okay. It was forcasted to rain the next day so we did it while we could.
There was a Gondola lift operating every 20 minutes from 9am to 10pm. It was only about 7 minutes ride from the Fuchi Jinja Station.

(Inside the tram.)

We were very early and had enough time to see other small islands through the telescopes set up on the viewing platform.

Below it was an expensive but amazing restaurant with perfect view of the city. The food there was said to be really nice but we only had a drink each since we were rather short of money.
For the next 2 hours we enjoyed the free wifi provided there and from time to time, watched the Nagasaki's nightlife slowly came alive.

While we were there, I read a bit more about Dejima Wharf's history and then planned the activities for the rest of our stay.

Day Three.
Rainy during the day, overcast in the evening.
We rested most of the day, got some massage in the evening near Shianbashi tram stop. Ate an amazing meal at seafood restaurant on Shianbashi Street mall, with live fishes caught in front of you and cooked in the kitchen behind.
Yep, the Sashimi was fresh, alright. The tail of the fish that the guys eating next to us was still moving! Oh, it made me so close to tears.

On the way back, I dropped into a cafe run by an oldish lady, who introduced me to the brief history of the neighbourhood and Nagasaki in general.
The area (Maruyama Machi) used to be an up market Hana-Machi (where wealthy men were entertained by female performers, such as Geisha and Maiko.)

The historical high-class brothel called Kagetsu, which now was an exclusive restaurant, was just around the corner, so we walked up there to see Maiko san's coming out of the building. Straight away you could see that grade of Maiko san different to what you are used to see on the TV. They had a class. Everything about them was graceful, literally, from tip to toe.
From the elegant way they walked, how their hands swayed, the proper manner when they talked to their seniors, it was easy to imagine that they would make a perfect cup of green tea, and entertain the customers with their top level dancing and music performance. How I wish I could take their photos. Even the photos wouldn't have been enough to capture the air they emanated.

I was hoping to upload the photo of the restaurant but I seemed to have lost it. There are few photos that went missing after coming back from Japan. If I manage to dig them up, I will put them up.
Kagetsu is actually on the very top of the large photo in which you can see the very old dutch style police station on the left. I have some daytime shots of the place. Here are some.

Well, the first three days flew past like that. We only had two more days to explore Nagasaki. The main part was yet to come.

Oh, talking of Tram. Trams are still operating in few towns in Japan, Nagasaki, Hakodate and Tokyo. There used to be ones running in my hometown Yokohama, and I used to play on the old, decaying tram desplayed in the big park next to my old elementary school as a child.

In the next post, I would like to upload some photos of the trams.

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