My vote would be for the blue steel. It should be easier to take care of and more forgiving when you fail to do so. I would get a deba too.
p. s. Santoku equipment office in Empress Galleria in Yaletown has sharpening lesson on Saturday if your chef don't have enough time to coach you. They also do sharpening and repair if you mess up your knives. (Don't ask me how I know that....<sigh>)