Monday, June 25, 2007


I’ve been meaning to write an exciting entry for you all, but now I’ve forgotten what sorts of interesting bits of Okinawan life I was going to throw at you. I was going to write up a funny little story about how I watched a family sneak platefuls of tempura into napkins and bags at an all-you-can eat buffet, but after a week, it doesn’t seem quite as amusing as it did at the time.

This past Saturday (the 23rd) was Memorial Day in Okinawa and apparently there were some ceremonies and such, although I didn’t see any evidence of anything special happening. But last Wednesday the entire school headed to a theater to view a movie about World War II to remember the war. I thought that the movie was about Okinawa and the actual battles that happened here. I was surprised to find that this movie was actually a cartoon and although I could get the gist of what was going on, I only realized that it wasn’t taking place in Okinawa when there were lightning bugs (Wait! Okinawa has lightning bugs?!) and then snowfall (Now, I know that we don’t get snow…). Anyway, the movie was about a young girl in Tokyo and basically her family just kept getting killed off. She had an unlucky life, that’s for sure. The only real response by the students who traveled 40 minutes by foot each way to see the flick, was uproarious laughter at the portrayal of some goofy GIs at the end of the movie. I felt like the entire auditorium was laughing at me. Strange.

Then on Friday (yet another week with only 5 classes) we had Track and Field Day. It was sort of like our various volleyball days, but since you never really knew who was doing what, it wasn’t as much fun as the tournament. And it was hot. My homeroom did enjoy some victories and of course, all the students were good sports about being forced to run around a track in 100 degree weather. I spent the day amusing students with my excessively large sunglasses. They were passed around amongst the entire homeroom class and I did have a nice time sitting under the trees and chatting with some of the girls. I also had a lovely raccoon sunburn as a souvenir from the day (despite sunscreen applications). The day afforded me the opportunity to enjoy some lunch and yummy watermelon on the beach and then since I was down in Mihama, I wandered around shopping (and seeing hundreds of students who suddenly decided that they can talk to me) and enjoying hazelnut coffee and a book. I will miss sitting and just looking at the ocean while sipping on a drink. I think I need to move to Seattle.

My weekend was a nice one, including some gym time and a couple of hours on the beach with Bridgit on Saturday. I finally turned on my air conditioning and the thought of leaving the coolness (okay, freezingness) of my apartment fills me with dread. Also, strangely, my apartment has reverted back to the way it smelled when I first moved in. I’m sure it’s due to the heat and being closed up more often, but every time I walk in, I am transported to my early days in Okinawa.

This week is supposed to be surprisingly normal with my usual 10 classes and no strange events during the day. Sorry that my life hasn’t been full of any extreme excitement. I am starting to make lists of things to get done before leaving and need to ship some boxes this week. I have also paid my last month’s rent and am getting ready to blow some money on myself in the near future. I can’t believe that in 32 short days, I will be walking on real American soil (not the military base kind) and will be facing an extended time in the States for the first time in a long time. Anyone know of any jobs?!?! Seriously.

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