Back with a smack

Today, as with every Friday for the past month and a half or so, I've been teaching a lovely little girl out near Kobe. And today, unlike every Friday for the past month and a half, I actually took the time to go to Kobe after my lesson instead of just coming straight back to Osaka. I came back with the same realization I have every time I go to Kobe: I should go there more.

Kobe just feels so much nicer than Osaka. Yes, superficially it is nicer. It's new (because of the earthquake), it's clean, the air is clean, there are no bikes in pedestrian areas, and the women aren't dressed as overtly slutty as in Osaka. It's just so nice. That said, the entire downtown area is basically one big red light district that is Japanese-only. Not that I have any interest in frequenting a Soapland, or snack bar or what have you, but because all of the landscape is taken up by places like that, the overall variety of the area is seriously limited. There aren't many good stores, the restaurants are fairly gaijin-unfriendly, and really the best place to go is Chinatown, which unfortunately closes at 9PM, restaurants included.

That said, as a place for a random wander, it is a breath of fresh air. Literally. When I got off the train back in Osaka, within 3 minutes of exiting the station I:
-was hit with the overwhelming, ground-in stench of urine and feces.
-was nearly run over/deafened by assholes on bikes with squealing breaks.
-was almost hit by a taxi.
-saw a J-boy either a) try to lure a whorishly dressed girl into a host bar or b) lure her into a porno filming.

It's good to be home.
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