My week started by me realizing that I got a cold. The hotel we stayed at in Hiroshima had a pretty strong air conditioning, which was a heavy temperature change from the outside. Well, I was coughing really loudly to my way to lab. My lab mates noticed and looked concerned for my health. A couple of hour later, the post doc of lab comes to my desk and handed me a starbuck’s bag.
Inside there were cough medicine, cough drops and two apples! It was a small care package and it made feel really cared for. The rest of the week consisted of long meetings and tedious experiments. Well, except for Thursday, that day my lab mates and I went to eat to an amazing Indian food restaurant. Once we finished eating, it started to rain super hard. We had to run through the rain for a good 15 minutes to get back to lab! After we took our drenching shoes off, we proceeded to play video games until dark since had finished our work early.
Most of my friends decided to go to Tokyo for this long weekend. I did not want to go with them because I will be heading to Tokyo after my program ends. Thus, my friend Sara and I decided to follow the recommendation from my classmate Tamutamu and check out the famous Kaiyukan Osaka Aquarium, one of the largest aquariums in the world.
We decided to start our day by meeting at Minamisenri station at 10 am. We ended up meeting at 12pm. My friend got lost in her way to the station for two hours! She felt really bad for making me wait at the station for that long. I told her that it was okay, but she heavily insisted in making it up to me. She did a super angle apologetic bow and I could not deny her request. So we agree that she will buy lunch for both us to make up for her coming late. Well, once that was settle, we got into our train and headed to the aquarium. When we arrived to aquarium, we were greeted with the view a huge Ferris wheel in front of a mall. We knew we will check it out later, but for now we headed to the aquarium.
The route started with great tunnel that took us to the 8th floor. From the top, it was just a magical way down with amazing animals everywhere. The route was organize in a way what you will get to see a the whole aquarium in one go without getting lost. The whale-shark and the sea lions were truly the highly of this visit.
Once we finished exploring the aquarium, we headed to mall nearby. It was a huge mall with a floor designed as old street market. All the food looked super good and we could not decided what to eat! We decided in a really good ramen restaurant that was also really inexpensive. After eating, we headed to the arcade! I realized that I am UFO claw machine addict, so I told her to stopped me the moment I want to spend more than 2000 yen. Unlike my previous attempts to use claw machines in the past, this time I succeeded! I was able to obtain Hatsune Miku figurine with only 1000 yen! We ended the night by going in the Ferris wheel and admiring the port of Osaka.
Sunday started as normal, I woke up, eat breakfast and started to write this blog. I was getting looking at my phone for pictures when I friend Rebecca invited me to Karaoke with her lab mates. So I decided to take a brake of writing and headed to Toyonaka. Singing and drinking with them was really fun, even when I was the worst singer of all of them. Once we were done singing, we realized it was 11:30pm Rebecca and I panicked since we lived the furthest and all the trains stop at midnight. So we ran to catch our train. Once in there we were counting the stations to get of and transfer to our respective train lines. However, this never happened.
We supposed to get off at the 3rd stop that was 15 minutes away but 30 minutes has passed and there was only one stop. We got off in the next stop and saw that our train was an EXPRESS TRAIN! This means it skips stops to get to get to another stop faster. At this point it was pass midnight and we had were a good 4 hours walk away from my apartment and an hour and half walk from her apartment. We tried to call a taxi, but there were none near our station. We had no other choice, we decided to walk. My phone was at really low battery, but we manged to get to our destination after walking through dark alleys and encountering some bats flying around. My friend was kind enough to let me crash at her place as I was still a good 2 hours way from my apartment and it was already 2 am. I realized that tatami floors are really comfortable.
The next day, we proceeded with our original plan of going to Umeda and exploring around the malls. I personally enjoyed the Pokemon center and the Namco arcade the most. At the arcade I managed to win another prize with only 600 yen!
After exploring for a bit more, we decided to head to the Dotonobori canal, where the running man is located. There I hear a couple of people speaking Spanish. I talk to them for a while. It was really nice to speak my mother tongue in a land far from home.