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what it`s REALLY like to be a gaijin in OSAKA...

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  • what it`s REALLY like to be a gaijin in OSAKA...

    Did that get all of your attention? Now for some real juice on Osaka:

    I lived there for quite a while. Apart form the fact that Osaka has about 2 trees, about a million hazardously polluted rivers, was formerly a mosquito infested swamp before being drained, and after all that hard spent time you spent learning ___ only walk up to an Osaka oba-chan in a shop and not comprehend a single word, getting your own non-gaijin apartment and forking out ridiculous amounts of reikin, shikikin and hoshoukin, paying preposterously high monthly rent, all the (few) nice riverside spots and Osaka Jo Koen being occupied by homeless people with savage dogs that form packs and hunt you down (the dogs not the homeless), the stench of urine in the city, the films upon films of grime that accumulate on your recently hung out to dry washing, the stifling humidity in summer, the bitter windy days with lame arsed tantalizing snow falls in winter, the thousands of look alike ___ girls wearing the so called "kobe beautiful" fashion (you know the ones that dress like barbies and are just as brainless), the shoutengais lined with pachinko parlours, the pachinko parlours with povos lined up in front on saturday morning just to get their favorite machine so can they suffocate on passive smoke and be deafened day long, the teenagers rowdily hanging out in front of the conbini till the police tell them to push off, the guys urinating just about everywhere at anytime, the hours it takes you to get from A to B, and that white, oh so white sky, yes apart from that, Osaka is really a cool place. The best thing about Osaka is that the express train to KIX airport is only 1hr 30min not 2hr...you`ll appreciate that when you want to get the hell out.
    That`s the neighs, who`s gonna hit me with the yeas?

  • #2
    Sorry about your experience Teka.

    I've lived in Kobe, and my Japan was so very different from yours I can not even begin to compare. Suffice it to say that I am ready to go back at a drop of a hat.

    I liked coming to Osaka a lot. However, I spent most of my free time out there in Japan - Bizen, Sanda, Hiroshima, Suma, mountain villages... etc. etc.

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    • #3
      Still doesn`t say anything about what it`s like to be a gaijin in Osaka. Big deal, you visited Osaka on a day off or two or three, even I`d rate it for that much. Try living there and denying anything I said.

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      • #4
        Now, do we have to talk about living in Osaka City, or is Osaka prefecture enough. I've had places in both Suita and Toyonaka, which means I always live about 20 minutes by train away from Umeda. I don't know about being in the city itself, but being in the suburbs is nice enough.

        You use the accent as a negative point, but I think the accent is fine. Once you come to understand it, you can be far cooler than all the other gaijin that only understand the Kanto-Ben. In almost every major city in the world the rivers are horribly polluted. It's not like you're going to be going for a swim. The Pachinko - everywhere in Japan. The homeless are a real problem in Osaka proper, but also, they are in many major cities, as is the urination everywhere.

        Now, what I've liked up in my neck of Osaka is that somehow in these areas being a gaijin still manages to get me novelty status. Most everyone I've met in Osaka is really nice. I can ignore all those 'barbies' who just try to fit a mold anyway. You are very close by to Nara, Kobe, and Kyoto, so you have some nice cities that you can regularly visit. Anyway, I'm enjoying my time here.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by teka
          the bitter windy days with lame arsed tantalizing snow falls in winter.
          And how can you complain about the 'bitter windy days'? Have you ever been to Chicago during winter? Don't even think about Montreal if you think it gets cold in Osaka. Even New York City is much colder than Osaka. And of course you're getting 'lame' snow. It barely drops below freezing before wind chill here.

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          • #6
            great things in osaka

            geographical location - protected from a great deal from mother nature and her acts

            food - okonomiyaki, mizu nasubi, takoyaki, yummy!!! i could go on!! love the food!

            original flava!! - the people here are amazing! the strong obachans, the hilarious taxi drivers...a trip to the drycleaners can turn into one hell of a chat! the people breathe life into the city.

            access - daytripping!! i can be in nara, kyoto, kobe, in less than an hour, shikoku, wakayama or even nihon-kai in two and tokyo in two and a half...

            teka my friend, lets talk kansai airport - wonderful access!!

            it takes 30 minutes. from namba station to the terminal....if you take the bus fromn ocat, they check your luggage and one hour later you are at the airport, ready to check in, hands free.

            back to my rant...

            history - 400 years ago osaka was the capital of japan and all throughout history, osaka has played a fudamental role in the country and its development. props to hideyoshi!!

            osakans were the original merchants. have you ever noticed that osakajin love to tell you what a great bargain something was??

            yoshimoto - manzai!!!

            hanshin tigers fans - simply, the greatest baseball fans on the planet

            sunsets - intense, heart warming, sunlight afternoons that ease into crimson skies right before your eyes everyday....yamato-gawa, nanko, my veranda (fave three views)

            osaka spring sumo tourny - deep tradition, sports and big men in diapers!!

            the homeless : i think you forgot one thing - they are homeless.....i admire them for staking out the best cherry blossoms and setting up shop!! have you ever tried chatting them up?? a lot of them speak english and afterall, they are human beings - just like you and me. in tennoji, by the zoo, there is a little homeless shanty town...head down there on a sunday night for homeless karaoke at the best outdoor karaoke venue in the city...200 yen gets you a beer and a song...an extremely entertaining evening.

            you can compare osaka to just about any place and find things you dont like about it. other cities are cleaner, have better weather, easier living conditions. but the point is that we are here. why not suck it up and look for the good things instead of pointing out the bad?

            life is what you make of it and so is the city you live in.

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            • #7
              Well, it took a bit of decent , what`s it called here, `trolling`, to get people to move on to the topic proper. And I agree with everything said. I honestly had the best time living and teaching in Osaka for 2 years. The people are really friendly for sure, funny buggers too!

              Originally posted by madmaxxam
              Now, do we have to talk about living in Osaka City, or is Osaka prefecture enough. I've had places in both Suita and Toyonaka, which means I always live about 20 minutes by train away from Umeda. I don't know about being in the city itself, but being in the suburbs is nice enough.
              Interesting point. If your Japanese you`d say Suita, Ibaraki, Takatsuki, etc are different cities. But let`s be honest, it`s all just one conglomerate mass of concrete urban sprawl making up Osaka city;

              Originally posted by madmaxxam
              You use the accent as a negative point, but I think the accent is fine. Once you come to understand it, you can be far cooler than all the other gaijin that only understand the Kanto-Ben.
              Yep you right. I am up in Sapporo now and I get props from the locals. Gets lots of laughs.

              Originally posted by madmaxxam
              Now, what I've liked up in my neck of Osaka is that somehow in these areas being a gaijin still manages to get me novelty status.
              I think that`s called CMS [Charisma Man Syndrome}. Get over it.

              And what about Osaka`s underground. A place that still gets the locals walking round in circles. I heard it was the most extensive underground shopping and pedestrian netwaork in the world. Some places have up to 6 levels of traffic in vert from the underground to overpasses to the skyways. What else trips me out is a free standing building with an elevated road running through. That`s a fun drive.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by madmaxxam
                And how can you complain about the 'bitter windy days'? Have you ever been to Chicago during winter? Don't even think about Montreal if you think it gets cold in Osaka. Even New York City is much colder than Osaka. And of course you're getting 'lame' snow. It barely drops below freezing before wind chill here.
                Never been to either , so to speak. So I can`t compare. No Osaka is not cold. Not cold enough. That`s why I split to Hokkaido. We had our first snow two weeks ago!! All gone now but it just dumped so hard it was bliss. I`m riding this winter out in the finest powder the world has. You all can sit on your hands in your fishbowls down in Osaka and only dream.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by ananda
                  teka my friend, lets talk kansai airport - wonderful access!!

                  it takes 30 minutes. from namba station to the terminal....if you take the bus fromn ocat, they check your luggage and one hour later you are at the airport, ready to check in, hands free.
                  That`s great! If only everyone in Osaka could live in Namba station. I know a lot of convenient places that are only 30mins from somewhere too. And who wants to fork out the ridiculous fare for that express train. You are talking about the Nankai Line right?
                  Originally posted by ananda
                  sunsets - intense, heart warming, sunlight afternoons that ease into crimson skies right before your eyes everyday....yamato-gawa, nanko, my veranda (fave three views)
                  Yes pretty they are it`s true. I often changed seats in the train just get a nicer veiw. Meanwhile, the locals have their eyes trained on the toes. I could never understand that. I have a theory that the can`t bear to appreciate the beauty of things that remind them of how blunted they have become by the daily grind.]
                  Originally posted by ananda
                  the homeless : i think you forgot one thing - they are homeless.....i admire them for staking out the best cherry blossoms and setting up shop!! have you ever tried chatting them up??
                  Bro, you must be desperate. Think you have got the market cornered on that one. The playboys at Sam n Daves won`t be on to that one for a while. Go for it son, maybe you`ll find your perfect match. Just watch out for those dogs. They like to put balls in their mouths too. But they don`t do it so well as the girls do.
                  Last edited by teka; 2004-11-09, 12:08 AM. Reason: Messed the quotes up

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                  • #10
                    Good that you are happy now.

                    Between Osaka and Hokkaido, I would choose Osaka though, for life and work. City boy.

                    Hokkaido is fantastic... think Hakodate... ah, memories. Sapporo is cool, too. The seafood... heavenly.

                    I am getting delirious in my desire to get back there.

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                    • #11
                      By the way, speaking of being a gaijin in Osaka - has anyone had any experiences with the police or in the red light districts (Juso and Tennoji)?

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                      • #12
                        No siberian breeze?

                        I'm dissapointed by Osaka's lack of cold temperature... I love cold winter, and I mean really cold winter. Here in Paris right now, it's only 7-8 C .... How cold can Osaka get? And how often? With all the pollution in the air, I'm surprised that snow flakes have difficulties forming...

                        Is the weather in Osaka very different from Tokyo?

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                        • #13
                          I've lived in Osaka for the last five years, in the city centre, in the boonies, by the airport and by the mountains. Great city, great people, great nightlife, lots of work with good pay (and I don't mean trudging away for the factory schools like Nova.) There is nothing dodgy about living in Tennoji, and it's not exactly a 'red light district' ! Get real. I lived there for about 7mths, and never had any negative experiences.

                          Stop complaining and move somewhere else dude.

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                          • #14
                            Ballbags, you reading in too much. I asked about any experiences this time. If you didn`t have any experiences then that`s your life. Did you ever walk down the streets in Tennoji with all the brothels with the girls on display on the open ground floor with their mama-chans? That`s pretty dodgy. And I did move. If you read all my posts you`d realise I am just discussing the realities of Osaka. But still have to say if you have been living their for 5 years then that does qualify for loser status.

                            Mononoke, the weather definitely is not cold enough. Each winter I saw snow fall more then 10 times but it never stayed on the ground. But their are lots of places not far from Osaka that get lots of snow. But you have to 1-2hrs to Gifu for the nearest skifields. And they definitely don`t come close to the best in Japan. Generally, the temp difference between Osaka and Tokyo is 1-3 degress.

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                            • #15
                              If we self learn Japanese and communicate with locals in Osaka, will we learn the Osaka-ben? I've been reading about it recently and it is pretty cute this Osaka-ben. I'd rather learn this than the standard Japanese-ben (Kanto-ben?).

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