FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Sakura Shinkansen

by Angelique Platas

Jul 12, 2019

I am no stranger to public transportation and travel in and out of Philadelphia by train often. Until my experience riding from Western Japan to the city of Osaka by Sakura Shinkansen, or high-speed train, I didn’t really know what I was missing. The word “sakura” translates to “cherry blossom,” and Shinkansen is more commonly known as a “bullet train,” but regardless, the train experience was truly a game changer.

Sitting on another stopped-for-seemingly-no-reason Septa train car not close enough to my destination, I reminisce over how thoroughly impressed I was by Japan’s high-speed rail system. Everything seemed new and foreign, from the pristine shape of the train’s interior and quiet cars to the polite passengers and overall efficiency of the country’s public transportation.

The only stressful part of my bullet train journey was at Osaka Station. As soon as the train stopped, I had to quickly collect my belongings, my bag from the overhead storage and swiftly move into the aisle to keep up with the quick, quiet and fluid exit motion of the other passengers. No action is wasted. Every exiting passenger moved like a choreographed dancer, effortlessly moving off the train, onto the platform and to their respective destinations.

My exit, although not as graceful, was in the direction of a chartered bus traveling into the heart of downtown Osaka. That trek may have been back in February, but my Septa rides are nearly every other week, which is also when I daydream about my journey to Osaka.

— Angelique Platas, associate editor

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FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

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