We’re in Japan albeit one day later than planned. We arrived via Osaka Port. Japanese Immigration involved quite a few forms and a bag search for us adults – obviously we look a bit more dodgy than the kids – but that didn’t take too long and the staff were helpful in translating what we had to write.
We took the free shuttle bus to the station and then tried to decipher the complexity which is the Japanese transport system. There appear to be different lines run by different private companies, each requiring a separate fare for that leg – not all are displayed on the same map or indeed the same station, and few bits seem to be in English. Such fun! However, we made it and got to our airbnb accommodation – it was lovely. A small little upstairs flat, with hot shower, washing machine and dryer. It was warm and cosy and the host had put in some snacks, fruit juice and teas for us … it was even near shops for the other essentials such as a cold beer! Osaka was to be our home for the next 6 nights.
Hiroko our host was so lovely. She brought her son round whilst she helped us with something and the kids played happily. Taio made origami and Aoife showed him what she had learned from After School Club. Seamus has loved the toys in the flat – here he is having a wee Japanese tea party although he says everyone ordered Fish and Chips.
A lovely time was had at Kaiyukan Aquarium which the kids proclaimed better than the Great Wall of China. It was easy to walk around and had wonderful tanks of sea-life and more. All were very taken by the seals, dolphins and sharks. Equally impressive were the stunning jellyfish and the amazing Spider Crabs … which we couldn’t talk about without singing the Spiderman theme tune “Spider Crab, Spider Crab, does whatever a Spider Crab does …. Mummy, what DOES a Spider Crab do?”
Well, we did it – we went to a sushi bar. Aoife was the bravest, but Orla was even in two minds about the omelette and rice balls. I think the photo below of the two of them sums it up perfectly. I was a wimp too. However, the whizzing plates going round on the conveyer belt kept everyone entertained, especially when we were explaining what some of the items were – although we are still unsure about a few ourselves!
So what’s Japan like so far – it’s very, very expensive and busy. Japanese people love their gadgets. On the trains, nobody spoke. Just look at everyone on their phone. Ooops, Seamus photobombed the picture! No-one offered a seat to the kids and during busy times they didn’t make any extra care to wait for them when on escalators of getting on or off the train, which was a bit of a shame. We are having a nice time, it is exciting and interesting and most importantly, we are off that ship!