Monday, April 30, 2007

Cable Cars

Look! There are cable cars! why did we walk up the mountain, again?

Sunday, April 29, 2007


There are apparently wild boar living on Mount Rokko. If there were any nearby on the day we climbed it, I'm sure they were frightened away by the noise of several hundred high school students long before we got anywhere near them.

Japanese word of the day - "wild boar" is "inoshishi"

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Mountain Climbing?

Yesterday was our school excursion...we went "mountain climbing," though I would probably have classified it as more "light hiking," or maybe even "nature walk." We climbed Mt. Rokko, near Kobe. When we got to the top there was a park next to a highway where we got to have lunch. Somehow the highway was disappointing.

We did get to see some very nice views on the way, though, including a couple waterfalls. Here's the first one:

Isn't it purty? I like the spikes and keep out sign, too.

Friday, April 27, 2007


...small and cute!
This was a mini taiyaki from Chinatown in Kobe. It was filled with chocolate...yum.

Also, you can see a (very) little bit of Chinatown in the background.

(Don't bother clicking on the picture for a larger version, by the way...this was a cell phone pic, so it doesn't make much difference :p)

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Wednesday, April 25, 2007


One more picture from DenDen Town: a human-sized Gundam statue. It was impressive.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Oops (^_^;)

So on the bus home today, a thought suddenly came to mind..."Did I post a picture yesterday?" I was pretty sure I'd forgotten.

Sunday I had an excuse...I was gone Saturday. Didn't come home, couldn't post.
Today I have no excuse. I forgot :p

So I will post three views of DenDen Town :)

DenDen Town is the electronics/anime/manga/game center of Osaka. It's like Akihabara in Tokyo. It even has fancy electronic signs above the walkways, (above), huge electronics stores, and big anime-style billboards (below).

...also, maid cafes.

Sunday, April 22, 2007


So some of my friends were in Osaka for the weekend, and Saturday night I decided to stay with them at a capsule hotel. This is a hotel where your "room" is basically bunk bed size, with a screen over the entrance you can pull down for privacy. (As luck would have it, though, the beds capsules in the main women's dorm area were full by the time we got there, so for a few extra yen we got a private room with just four capsules - perfect for the four of us ^_^ )

Here's a shot of my capsule-bed area (I was on the can see part of another capsule below):

And here's the interior - complete with light, radio/alarm clock, and little cubby areas for personal belongings. There's also a little TV screen on the other end - you can see it in the first picture.

And just for fun - the capsule in use. I'm even wearing the hotel-provided PJs.

Saturday, April 21, 2007


You know the place with all the birds?

There were also a couple (very tame) muskrats.

Thursday, April 19, 2007


It *looks* like a secluded natural setting...but the road was only about 20 feet behind me when I took the picture.
Bamboo is nice though.

This was taken on the other side of Koyaike Park (the place with all the birds).

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Stores and Sidewalks and Ferris Wheels, oh my!

No bears, though. (Ironically enough, there was a lion in the picture taken across the street...)

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The Scariest Tanuki Ever

I ride by this tanuki every day on the bus to and from school.
Go ahead. Click on him to see the close-up.

It's even scarier when it's dark. Those big eyes? They glow. Red.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Lion Channel, take 2

The front of the TV station building, complete with big balloon mascots. A cookie Mochi for anyone who can guess what number channel it is (of course, anyone living in Japan is not eligible :p)

By the way - the sign with the lion guy in the airplane says "Anytime, Anywhere, Lion Channel."

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Lion Channel

This is downtown Umeda, in Osaka, right outside of the Lion TV station (which happens to have a Tully's Coffee in the same building...ah, it feels like home).

I wandered around Umeda for a while was nice. I spent too much. I probably shouldn't wander randomly around Umeda very often.


...I'm posting another sakura picture today. There are some nice train tracks in the background, though!

Friday, April 13, 2007


These signboards appear all over the place before an election. I assume each poster is for a different candidate...I'm still not sure exactly how it works. But since I can't vote here anyway I guess that's okay.

Thursday, April 12, 2007


Hanami (flower-viewing - which is an official spring activity in Japan) at Sakuranomiya in Osaka last weekend. It was crowded!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

A Very Pink Picture

Sakura at the local park :)

Practically every tree in the entire park is a cherry tree...

Monday, April 9, 2007

Swan & Sakura

I was lucky to get this one :)

Sunday, April 8, 2007

How many...?

How many different species can you get into one shot?

(Um...three in this one. It would've been four, but the swan was just a little too far away.)

Saturday, April 7, 2007

The Park (again)

See? Birds everywhere!

(...and you can't even see the huge flocks in the trees on the islands in the middle of the lake!)

Koyaike Park

Yesterday after school I wandered over to Koyaike Park to take pictures. Someone had told me it was a good place to find cherry blossoms. They were wrong.

It was a good place to find birds though. Lots and lots of birds. In fact, so many birds that I worried about sanitation issues (for both the birds and the crowds of people hanging out in the park nearby...let's hope no one gets bird flu :p )

This was my favorite bird picture. Something startled a flock of pigeons, and I got my camera up just in time to catch the moment they all flew by me.

Pigeons were not actually the main avian species present, though. There were ducks and swans and herons and various other waterfowl in the big lake...the crows might have been the most numerous, though.

I will post more bird pictures later.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Sakura, saku yo!

"Bloom, o cherry tree!" ...or something like that.

Japan likes sakura. They put up these neat pink lanterns all over the place. This isn't even in a park or's just by the train station.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Takoru Shock!

...only they pronounce it "sho-ku".

That's the name of the TV Osaka exhibit I went to.
(...and this is the building it was in.)

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

No Takoyaki, No Osaka

I went to the TV Osaka 25th anniversary exhibit in Namba last weekend. This is Takoru-kun and his octopus sidekick (whose name I can't remember). They're really cute. (And not usually this huge ^_~)

Monday, April 2, 2007


He's huge!

When does (did?) Spiderman 3 come out in the US, anyway?
I should look it up.

(...this is Dotombori in Osaka again, btw)

Sunday, April 1, 2007


Kani = crab.

This is Dotombori, in the Namba area of Osaka. There are lots of tourists, people taking pictures of the big crab and other famous spots, eating takoyaki, hanging's pretty cool.