Kansai Doldrums: Day 20

Scott eating a whole baby octopus

Couchsurfing in the Library

Couchsurfing in the Library

It’s not everyday that super exciting stuff happens. With that in mind, this post will be relatively concise as we had somewhat of a low-key day.

After finding our couchsurfing host Jody’s apartment building last night, we were delighted to be given access to the building’s multipurpose “Library” room. Complete with kitchenette, bathroom, and even cushions to sleep on, it was a dream come true. Jody was very gracious and let us use her shower and hang out in her apartment before we turned in for the night.

This morning Dylan overfed everyone with french toast and homefries while we watched the recently released Star Trek movie. It was Scott’s first viewing of the film. As a Trek fan since TNG, I was a tad disappointed that he didn’t tear up at any time during the movie. The three of us packed up and left later than expected around 1pm.

For me, the rest of the day is one big blur of Kansai metropolis outskirts. In case you don’t know, Kansai is the flat area of Japan that includes Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe, and the surrounding urban development. Since flat land is hard to come by in Japan, almost all relatively level stretches of real estate are developed to the hilt. Such is the Kansai plain.

Around 3pm the team stopped in a city called Akashi, which had an interesting shopping arcade, vending mostly octopus and a few other locally caught fish. Enjoy the following multi-media summary of our stroll through octopus ally.

Oddly expressive fish for sale

Octopus Tentacle

Whole Octopus for Sale Akashi Fish Arcade in Kansai

Dylan and Scott eat Taiyaki

Finally, we ended the day spending about and hour and a half biking out of the densely urbanized area surrounding Kobe to find a small, grassy residential exercise park where we’ve put up the tents for the night. It’s soft ground and I’m looking forward to a good night’s sleep.

Today we biked about 55km to land near Kobe. Tomorrow we hope to make it the heart of Osaka.

battery vending machine

Check it out! A battery vending machine!

Rider Condition:

Crash: Feeling cramped in the city
Calves: Are we there yet?
Spock: Glad to have the tent up

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12 Responses to Kansai Doldrums: Day 20

  1. Lori May 5, 2011 at 8:48 am #

    I’m not sure why no one else commented on the battery vending machine! Japan is always full of surprises. It’s so exciting to see how far you’ve gotten. Great job!

    • Andrew May 5, 2011 at 9:58 am #

      Ya, I’ve lived here for awhile but havn’t seen a battery vending machine yet. Wild.

  2. Victor May 5, 2011 at 6:22 am #

    Great blog and great pics!

    • Andrew May 5, 2011 at 9:57 am #

      Victor! Thanks for stopping by. Hope to hear from you again.

  3. Andrew's Mom May 5, 2011 at 12:28 am #

    Some of the 5th graders that I work with and their teacher were more or less “speechless” at the sight of Scott with the fried baby octopus. I’m glad your site is rated “G” and I can share it at school! Looking forward to the next posting.

    • Andrew May 5, 2011 at 9:56 am #

      Glad your kids liked that post!!!

  4. Craig May 4, 2011 at 6:59 pm #

    Yeah I had a pretty long day in Kansai. 50km of urban sprawl. I passed so many Lawson’s and 7-11s that I reckoned car drivers could zip from one to the next holding their breath and go all day on just combini air. Glad you got where you wanted to camp. I walked all that way and found the hostel was closed, so I set up in the inner-city rose garden and discovered what people do in the bushes when they don’t think anyone is camping near by.

    • Andrew May 5, 2011 at 9:56 am #

      hahaha. We haven’t been in that situation yet.

  5. PinkGloom May 4, 2011 at 12:48 am #

    I would get my boyfriend to eat the octopus first, he eats everything :) I cannot get over the head stilling being there yet…

    Look at all that food! I loved Osaka and I had my first takoyaki there.

    Your tire issues are catching. I got a flat tire on my car today :( Car or bike issues with transportation is the pits.

    Keep up the hard work and I can’t wait to read the next post!!

    • Andrew May 5, 2011 at 9:54 am #

      Sorry about the tire problem. Mine is more or less fixed now.

  6. Usha May 3, 2011 at 10:29 pm #

    couldn’t help it but say, the octopus looks gross man. :s :s Nevertheless I still heart Japan. :D Good luck with the remaining bit. :)

    Cheers

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