The Japanese have a word, go-busata, that neatly describes the failure of one to keep up correspondence with another. Of this, I am guilty. But at least I have a nice excuse. My plans for visiting good friends in Tokyo fell through two weeks ago. My friend back in America cancelled her flight, rather than fly into Narita during a period of unstable electricity. My Gunma friend thought she might come to Osaka, but decided not to, again because the threat of rolling blackouts made it hard to tell if she could return on time for work if she left.
The electrical troubles, though, stabilized, and so a week ago she finally came over, laying eyes on Kansai for the first time in two years or so, since we were students. A friend and associate of hers from Maebashi just happened to be in the area, so we joined forces. And so we went on a tour of Keihanshin. In Osaka, we visited the ancient religious sites of Sumiyoshi and Shitennoji, then hung around Dotonbori for food and karaoke. In Kobe, we explored the streets, strolled Chinatown, and sat down for some fine Kobe steak. Then we went to Kyoto, visiting old temples in the northeast and buying traditional goods in the markets.
I didn’t really take any pictures, partially because I’ve already uploaded pictures of these places, but mostly because I just wanted to enjoy the time without being perpetually distracted by trying to capture everything in JPEGs.
Sorry. I’ll make up for it.
My friend is back in Maebashi now and we’re all back to work, but now comes the news that my friend from Pennsylvania is flying to Osaka for two weeks in April-May. That’s pretty friggin’ sweet.