Saturday, May 16, 2009

Eat 'til You Drop (道頓堀)

Osaka's Dotonbori is a dangerous place.

The attitude and atmosphere of this lively food district is epitomized by the Japanese phrase, "kuidaore". "Kui" means to eat, and "daore" means to fall over. Put the two together, and the basic idea is that one will literally die eating.

Hey, there are worse ways to go right?

For me, "kuidaore" took the form of wandering from food stall to food stall, stuffing my face with a never-ending stream of savory street food. Then I ate dinner. Afterward, I returned to wandering and began stuffing my face again, this time with sweet desserts.

Aesthetically, Dotonbori is quite famous for its flamboyant signage. Ever since the Kani Doraku Crab and Kuidaore Taro doll arrived back in the 1950s, the district has positively exploded with colorful characters and neon lights.

The neon signs, especially those around Ebisu Bridge, are said to have influenced the set designs from the Sci-Fi classic Blade Runner.

Please enjoy the pictures below.

If you visit Dotonbori, be sure to bring your appetite!


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