Friday, August 28, 2009

Osaka- Day One

We got into Osaka to find that it's subway train system & exit from the station system involves a hell of a lot of stuffing around, swearing and stairs that go on forever.
We finally found our way out & got a cab to our hotel MyStays. Our hotel is very modern & our room is bigger than any we have had so far. Bliss.!
We got our stuff settled in and decided to go and have some early dinner & to go to the Giant Ferris Wheel. Said to be the largest ferris wheel in the world at 112metres high.
OK.. in Osaka (unlike Tokyo and Hiroshima) there is very little English on signage or anybody who speaks it. We found a big poster with the train lines (of which there are friggin hundreds) and found a random lady. We pointed to the only symbol of a ferris wheel & tried to ask for directions. She pointed us in the right direction.
After about 5 minutes of heading out into the boonies we started to get worried. We finally reached our stop out in the middle of nowhere. Yes there was a ferris wheel (in an amusement park).. a small ferris wheel. We realised we were in the wrong place. Mick used his best Engrish on a couple of trendy looking young girlies who could speak bugger-all english. They told us to follow them. They acted like they were headed for the BIG ferris wheel too! What Luck!
The took us to the next station & ushered for us to follow them to the connecting train. OK we thought. Then at the next stop they hurried us to a train & instructed us to get on quickly. We did. The girls then waved good-bye and called "last station last station!"as the doors closed!!!
We got off at the last station having NO idea where we were. We went upstairs and wandered around looking for this mystery ferris wheel. I mean how hard can it be to spot the biggest frigging ferris wheel in the world. No luck. By this time it was dark and we popped into a hawaiin bar for a drink. We asked the romanian bar chick if she knew where the ferris wheel was.
She drew us a picture of a ferris wheel with the Japanese word for ferris wheel and gave us the name of the suburb and told us 10 minutes by cab.
We flagged a cab & pointed to the pic. He finally got the gist.
After about 15 minutes & 2000 yen there it was.... THE FERRIS WHEEL.
We paid our 700Yen each & jumped aboard. It was very very high & I got a bit of vertigo.
But after all of that it was... well MEH. It did have a great view of Osaka city by night. Though I think by this time we were a bit over it.
Next to the wheel was a bit of a mall with weird shops... including THE NINJA SHOP. Thankfully Mick had bought his wrestling mask for such a photo opportunity.
We wandered around the various stores and then decided to get back to the hotel.
We got the train and then a cab back to the hotel totally knackered,chapped & swollen.

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