Yesterday I woke up to pouring rain with a forecast of rain, rain and rain until at least tomorrow. Instead of walking around getting soaked in Kyoto, we decided to stay in Osaka one more day and visit a most holy place of a different order: the Robo Cafe. It was heaven. Its a small cafe with shelves full of the latest robotic toys and a large table on which to play with them all. I drank coffee and geeked out with the robots for more than 2 hours and bought a couple souveniers. The rest day was dedicated to exploring more of Osaka, drinking, a heated ping pong tournament, and taiko-game (I feel an addiction forming). We met some great characters in Minami and ate yet more really good food.
This morning we decided to return to Tokyo instead of going back to Kyoto for one more day due to crunky weather. I do regret only having spent one day in Kyoto even though I had a blast in Osaka. Next trip to Japan will include more time in Kyoto for sure. On the way out, we ate breakfast at a nice kaiten-zushi place. I love kaiten-zushi. This place was Y120 / plate and the food was pretty good. Every time i go to one of these places, i think about sticking my camera on the conveyor belt and sending it around the restaurant on movie-mode to capture everyone watching the sushi go by, eating, talking, etc. This place presented the perfect opportunity: It had two tiers of conveyor belt - one for fish and another for shoyu-dishes, cups and the like. It would most likely be seen as rude to place a camera on the food conveyor, but the other one seemed more appropriate. I waited for a good spot and placed the camera on an upside-down soy sauce dish. I was a little nervous at first, but it made its way around very slowly - no one batted an eye. The resulting video is great, but as soon as it came back, the restaurant started to fill up so I sent it around again. It made about 2/3rds of the journey around before one of the chefs grabbed it and returned it to me with a smile. Here are the results of my first attempt at “art” in Japan. I was relieved (and a little surprised) that everyone just thought it was funny and didn’t mind at all.
I’m now on the train back to Tokyo for 3 more nights before I fly to Auckland, New Zealand!