Monday, we all got up bright and early and headed to Osaka. When we arrived, we were stunned by the noise of the cicadas (video file). Apparently, there are twice as many cicadas this year as last year, and Osaka in particular has them in abundance. We continued on through the deafening buzz to Osaka Castle, where megory tried on another suit of armor.
After that, we went to the Tsuruhashi area. It has a number of Korean shops, some selling beautiful traditional clothing, such as these dresses. We wandered through block after block of the covered market before we finally located a small okonomiyaki place for lunch.
Following lunch, we went to the Namba area to see the restaurant supply district. It's hard to restrain myself from buying everything in sight, the dishware is all so gorgeous and the cookware so convenient. From there, we walked on to Otaku Road, where I made some purchases, and megory tried some soft serve ice cream. They had all the standard flavors, plus such things as peanut, chestnut, canteloupe, Chinese annin, purple sweet potato, pineapple, banana, and caramel.
Tuesday we went to the north end of Lake Biwa to see Nagahama, which is famous for its stained glass and other glassware. I had intended to go to the castle first, but thanks to my extreme navigational impairment, we wound up headed the complete opposite direction. It turned out to be not such a bad thing after all, as we got to see a shrine and temple during our wanderings.
Nagahama, sadly, seemed poorly kept-up. The shrine had scum and trash floating in its pond, the department store bathrooms were filthy and smelly, and the castle park walls were overgrown with weeds. The shopping square, though, was very nicely decorated with stained glass posts. Many shops and restaurants were closed on Tuesday as their day off, so we didn't get to see everything that we might have if we'd come on a weekend, but we did get some nice deals on pretty dishware. We also dropped by the figure museum gift shop, though we didn't enter the museum itself.
Wednesday we spent getting Dad packed while we waited for the delivery of Harry Potter, which Amazon managed to send earlier than estimated.
Thursday we left early to take him to the airport. There were no complications, and we had time for a quick lunch before seeing him off. Friday, typhoon #5 was passing through to the west, so it was very windy. We decided to stay indoors, and I wound up mostly playing Warcraft. I'll probably do the same again today...