Sunday, August 13, 2006


Hello again, what a great few days we have had! On Saturday we ventured into Osaka City centre with Chris and visited Osaka Castle, Minami Area which is kinda like Times Square in NYC (see pic left) and Umeda Sky building which is really tall and we got some great nightime shots of Osaka (pic below).

Today we went to Chris & Miake`s church this morning which, apart from the language difference (Maike translated for us), reminded me a lot of church back home. The people there were lovely, a few of them spoke good English and came and chatted to us. Then we spent the rest of the day on the roof of Miake`s parents apart block. It`s 15 floors high and you get a great view. We chilled out and kicked the football around and had a laugh - pretty relaxing day.

Following that Miake`s family prepared the most amazing meal ever. I think it was called Quishe Tamaka?! Basically it was lots of different raw meats, fish and vegetables on skewers. Together we lightly battered all the skewers and then on the table was a saucepan of boiling oil and we fryed it all and ate it - it was a taste sensation. They really are the kindest most hospitable family and we really have been blessed to spend time with them! To the right is a picture of us all during tonights feast!
From left: Chris, Maike, Kaeko (Maike`s Mum), Satishi (Maike`s brother), Stefan, Aki (Maike`s Dad), and me!

Other observations of Japanese culture:
  • it seems to be common to provide a seat in the shower which is a great idea if you ask me!
  • Japenese people are not noticeably smaller! I had expected to feel tall (for a change) but this is not so!
  • There are hardly any western white people here! As such Stefan, Chris and i stand out quite a bit! For example at out first visit to the `onsen` (hot springs) within 1 minute of our arrival there were about 8 staff in reception lined up all staring at us and giggling! Now some people may find this offensive but we were rather flattered!

Tomorrow (Monday) Maike`s Dad is taking us to a more rural place about 2 hours away by car (can`t remember the name). It is supposed to be very beautiful and there is a river there to swim in and real `onsen` to enjoy! Also a top tourist attraction is a suspension bridge over the river which is over 200m long apparently - bit bigger than Carrick-a-rede then!

Sayonara, Neil


Steve said...

Neil..the pictures are great. It looks and sounds like you are having a great time. I was preaching in Emmanuel tonight which went well...i think. Bec sends her love. We will keep reading your blog and learning more about your eastern adventure. Have a class time.

J-Mac said...

It's ok stefan wore a hairband for a year, he's used to being giggled at! Am keeping up to date with your adventures. Hope you enjoy many epiphanies

charlie knox said...

very jealous....sounds brilliant! you'll have to introduce your hosts to settlers!!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Neil & Stefan

You two boys have the life! I bet Stefan is being lifted and led as usual! Japan looks amazing - hope you enjoy - I'm sure you will have loads of stories when you get back. See ya soo, lenny

Niall said...

Hey Boss,

Just backl from Romania had a great time - sounds like you guys are having fun. Enjoy the Sushi!Keep it real.