Directions from Nishi-umeda Subway Station


Nishi-umeda Station – South Gate

Come out the ticket gates and continue walking straight ahead (south)

西梅田①⇒JR北新地駅②へ

Keep walking until you see the sign for Exit #9

JR北新地駅②

Take exit #9

JR北新地駅③

Once outside, turn to the left and walk straight..

桜橋~①

Keep walking, past the Media Cafe…

桜橋~②

Past the Docomo shop…

桜橋~③

Past the traffic signal, there is a Lawson convenience store on the left.

桜橋~④桜橋~⑤

You made it! Our office is in the Copper colored building next to the Lawson. There is a cycling-wear shop on the first floor. We are on the 7th floor.

桜橋~⑥CIMG0002

Directions from Midosuji Umeda Subway Station


Midosuji Subway Umeda – South Exit

Once you come through the gates, turn right

地下鉄梅田①地下鉄梅田①’

This spot is pretty busy all the time. Push on and continue for about 100m

地下鉄梅田②地下鉄梅田③ 

At the next passageway way turn to the right, walk another 30metres and there is an escalator on the left.

地下鉄梅田④⇒阪神電車②へ

 

 

 

 

阪神電車②

阪神電車②‘

Take the escalator up to street level.

阪神電車②‘’

阪神電車②‘’’

At the top of the escalator, turn around and there is a big intersection.

阪神電車③

Walk across the intersection, and head right, towards the Hilton hotel.

阪神電車④

Keeping the Hilton on your left, continue to follow the road around to the left.

阪神電車⑤

You will come to another large intersection. SAKURABASHI.  Look for the sign.

阪神電車⑥

First, cross the one-way road on your right –

阪神電車⑦

then turn left and cross the main two-way road on your left. The Family Mart should be behind you.

阪神電車⑧ JR大阪駅 桜橋口⑤

Once you have crossed the intersection, turn right.

桜橋~①

Keep walking, past the Media Cafe…

桜橋~②

Past the Docomo shop…

桜橋~③

Past the traffic signal, there is a Lawson convenience store on the left.

桜橋~④桜橋~⑤

You made it! Our office is in the Copper colored building next to the Lawson. There is a cycling-wear shop on the first floor. We are on the 7th floor.

桜橋~⑥CIMG0002

Directions From JR Osaka – Sakurabashi Exit


JR Osaka – Sakurabashi Exit

Turn right out of the ticket gates and head straight until you reach the lights and pedestrian crossing.

JR大阪駅 桜橋口①

Use the pedestrian crossing to cross the street and then turn left

JR大阪駅 桜橋口②

Walk to the next corner, and go straight across the two-way street.

JR大阪駅 桜橋口③

Keep heading straight ahead (south) until you reach another big intersection

JR大阪駅 桜橋口④

This large intersection is SAKURABASHI.  Look for the sign.

阪神電車⑥

Go straight across the intersection. The Family Mart should be behind you.

阪神電車⑧ JR大阪駅 桜橋口⑤

Once you have crossed the intersection, turn right.

桜橋~①

Keep walking, past the Media Cafe…

桜橋~②

Past the Docomo shop…

桜橋~③

Past the traffic signal, there is a Lawson convenience store on the left.

桜橋~④桜橋~⑤

You made it! Our office is in the Copper colored building next to the Lawson. There is a cycling-wear shop on the first floor. We are on the 7th floor.

桜橋~⑥CIMG0002

Directions from JR Osaka Central gate


 JR Osaka Station – Central Exit

When you come through the ticket gates, turn right and keep walking until you come out the main entrance.

JR大阪 中央口①⇒阪神電車③へ

Once you are outside, there is a big intersection.

阪神電車③

Walk across the intersection, and head right, towards the Hilton hotel.

阪神電車④

Keeping the Hilton on your left, continue to follow the road around to the left.

阪神電車⑤

You will come to another large intersection. SAKURABASHI.  Look for the sign.

阪神電車⑥

First, cross the one-way road on your right –

阪神電車⑦

then turn left and cross the main two-way road on your left. The Family Mart should be behind you.

阪神電車⑧ JR大阪駅 桜橋口⑤

Once you have crossed the intersection, turn right.

桜橋~①

Keep walking, past the Media Cafe…

桜橋~②

Past the Docomo shop…

桜橋~③

Past the traffic signal, there is a Lawson convenience store on the left.

桜橋~④桜橋~⑤

You made it! Our office is in the Copper colored building next to the Lawson. There is a cycling-wear shop on the first floor. We are on the 7th floor.

桜橋~⑥CIMG0002

Directions from Hanshin Umeda Station


Hanshin Umeda – West Exit

阪神電車①

Turn right out of the ticket gates and head straight for about 50m and there is an escalator on the left.

阪神電車②

阪神電車②‘

Take the escalator up to street level.

阪神電車②‘’

阪神電車②‘’’

At the top of the escalator, turn around and there is a big intersection.

阪神電車③

Walk across the intersection, and head right, towards the Hilton hotel.

阪神電車④

Keeping the Hilton on your left, continue to follow the road around to the left.

阪神電車⑤

You will come to another large intersection. SAKURABASHI.  Look for the sign.

阪神電車⑥

First, cross the one-way road on your right –

阪神電車⑦

then turn left and cross the main two-way road on your left. The Family Mart should be behind you.

阪神電車⑧ JR大阪駅 桜橋口⑤

Once you have crossed the intersection, turn right.

桜橋~①

Keep walking, past the Media Cafe…

桜橋~②

Past the Docomo shop…

桜橋~③

Past the traffic signal, there is a Lawson convenience store on the left.

桜橋~④桜橋~⑤

You made it! Our office is in the Copper colored building next to the Lawson. There is a cycling-wear shop on the first floor. We are on the 7th floor.

桜橋~⑥CIMG0002

Kameraoke


Every year, a couple of idea men put on an event that calls upon the creative forces of the tightly knit foreign community here in Osaka.

Kameraoke, a simple premise, take and submit photos of a specified theme

– This years – A day in the life.

the beauty of this event as a competition is that the theme, the selection process and final peer judgment system favors the amateur snap-happy shutterbug as much as the pro.

Click the link below to hear the creators tell it:

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1664062763/kameraoke-2014-a-day-in-our-life

http://www.kameraoke.com/

Shitennoji Temple flea market


If you are anything like me, and enjoy looking for treasure, then the monthly flea market at Shitennoji temple is a must.

It`s been a while since I have been to a flea market, and a random meeting and invitation from a friend turned into a spontaneous trip to the grounds of one of Osaka`s oldest temples.

A long-running institution, held on the 21st and 22nd of every month it`s popular with locals and tourists alike. Tents and stalls set up by vendors sell a kaleidoscope of nick knacks, ceramics, traditional statues, toys, vintage items, clothes, shoes, records, jewelery, tools, and the list goes on.

Despite the overcast drizzly day, there was quite a crowd, the majority of which was in its twilight years. As the market is always held on the 21st and 22nd, often falling on a weekday, a good portion of the visitors are post-retirement age. Don`t let the diminutive stature and blue-rinse hair lull you into a false sense of security however, as anyone who has ever tried to buy sale price spinach at the supermarket knows, the older generation in Osaka will hurt you if you try to get between them and a bargain.

My friend had an eye on interior pieces for his home, looking at a lot of ceramics, plates, bowls and vases, some traditional, some modern. I was happy to be out of the office and there was so much fascinating stuff to look at, and an array of colourful Osaka local characters to meet.

We were certainly not the only non-Japanese faces in the crowd, and understandably, as this market is an incredible source of real, authentic Japanese souvenirs, hard-to-find collectables, random “only-in-Japan” items. Things that make great gifts for friends and families back home are collapsible fans (small, light, unique) and Obi, the colourful, intricate brocaded sash worn with kimono.

Wandering back I found my mate with a very cool, carved hardwood panel. Distinctly Indonesian design and the colouring and weight of the wood itself said it was hardwood, and most likely teak. He was sold, the vendor told us a piece like this would sell for 20,000 yen in a store. Let the bargaining begin….

I wandered away again, this time to check out a crowd forming at the stall selling tools. Not old or traditional tools, just spanners, screwdrivers and hammers. Nothing particularly exciting to see, but the boisterous vendor had everyone`s attention and even tried to sell me some hand-made tin snips.

They were nice, but how many pairs of tin snips does one really need?

Returning to find the transaction complete and the newly acquired piece being wrapped and thoughtfully bagged, we proceeded to take a look at some crates of LP`s. Plenty of 1970`s pop, Simon & Garfunkel live in central park – The “From Russia With Love” Original soundtrack. This could have taken up a lot more of my day, but the rain worsened and we decided to be on our way.

The layout of the temple grounds means the stall are somewhat randomly placed  and we came across a jumbled collection of randomness near the south gate. One big table was covered with books and while my cultured accomplice found a handsome looking hard back on world architecture, the first book I reached for was an illustrated collection of “spring pictures”. If anyone living in Japan is unfamiliar with these, think back to your childhood when you first saw the colorful pictures in the middle section of your parents` The Joy of Sex when you were seven. Again I was thankful for the cultural tolerance as I giggled at myself for poring over samurai-era porn in full view of the elderly, and some small children. As money changed hands for the architectural tome, the otherwise brash vendor must have sensed some of my amusement and decided to “presento” us a couple of leisure cushions.

With a well needed dose of culture under our belts, we headed off into the rain. I for one will be returning in the new year.