Wow. Today has been full of ups and downs like no other.
We've finally done some washing (!) so all of our clothes are clean, which was a bonus. After finishing that gruelling work, we headed to a Kyoto food market which promised wide varieties of the crazier side of food. It was great there! So much great smelling tasties - I plumped for cheese wrapped in a fat chicken breast, which was delicious, a banana (!!) and some chocolate (only my second piece of chocolate in Japan - it's not as big a deal here apparently...)
We soon were off to visit a complex of Zen temples. We inevitably got lost. And it started raining. Not a little - a LOT. My waterproof coat was helpless against this monsoon, my socks have turned yellow from the colour on the inside of my shoes, and my jeans went from blue to black, they'd gotten so wet. Turns out the Japanese use little umberellas, with no form of coat whatsoever - and remain completely dry. We duly noted this whilst we swam around in the downpour. We did eventually make it to the temples, but they were all closed (sad times). The gardens were still nice, and we could appreciate the external architechture, but not much else.
And so back to Kyoto, which isn't the edo-period traditional mountain village I thought it was - it's more like Tokyo, but with fewer neon signs and far less skyscrapers. It's still great though, and the hostel we're in is fantastic.
From here, after a brief rest and dry, we headed for Osaka to watch the Kansai derby between Gamba Osaka and Vissel Kobe. You may or may not remember my mancrush, bordering on obsession, with the Japanese player Endo, who plays for Osaka. Hence, the trip on the shikansen to Osaka (which took, shockingly, 14 minutes!).
But we were running late. And so we ran whatever short distances we had on foot and got directed to almost every ticket gate before finally getting into the stadium. It was well worth it though; Gamba Osaka cruised to a 3-2 victory, with some mastertouches by Endo himself. The crowd's (attendance around 17,500) songs were great, even if we couldn't understand them. At half time, my dream came true - I purchased a Gamba Osaka football shirt with Endo/7 on the back :D
This, however, cost us all our money. Whoops. Turns out the monorail stations were lacking in ATMs, and so we had to use all of our silky skills (walking the distance of one stop, sneaking past one guard, sweettalking past another) to finally make it to a station with a cash machine. Though by this point the last shikansen had gone, and we were forced onto the local train (taking 45 minutes).
All in all though, I've had a fantastic day, crowned by the Endo football shirt that I will proudly wear until the law tells me otherwise