Tuesday, July 17, 2012

7, seven, shichi, 七

It has been about seven months since I came by here to post something aside from a card. So, I'm blowing off the dust (stand back dust is really kind of gross stuff), and getting back to the posting of things. Those of you who have stayed, arigato! For those of you who haven't, I don't blame you it's been kind of boring. I thought I would break it down to a play by play on what our life on the island has been like. I haven't decided if I would do more than one post or not. I think it all depends on what the kids get into as I'm typing, or if my fingers start to cramp up.

First off, I'd love to show you all our new digs. Here is a view from our 8th floor balcony:
Needless to say, I don't get a lot done with a view that beautiful. We are right on the East China Sea. The water is home to a host of lovely creatures we have had the privilege to meet, including a sea horse, octopus, NUMEROUS sea cucumbers, hermit crabs, urchin, and tiny fish. It's a lot of fun. Our move in was quite the ordeal. With Ron having been gone for two years and being the culinary diva he is (I didn't type that), we had A LOT of STUFF. Our home is not big by American standards, about 1400 sf, but it's quite large by Japanese standards. The average Japanese home is about 1,000 sf. I had thought we might want a new sofa set when we arrived, but we needed a crane to lift and place our CURRENT sofa in the apartment. I knew then & there I was NOT getting a sofa until we left Okinawa. We donated eleven boxes of stuff to the local thrift shop! We're still trying to find a balance, but at least most of the boxes are gone.

In January, we added a new member to our family when we adopted Milo (named after the ridiculous dog in "Mask").
Milo is a rescue from Ozato. If you go to the link, you'll learn heartbreaking statistics on the gassing of animals here. Long story short, owners have five days to collect their animals. If there is not an owner, the dog is NOW offered to American Servicemembers and Japanese citizens to adopt. If the animal is not adopted or fostered (or if it is turned in by its owner), it is gassed. In 1992 over 13000 animals were gassed. In 2008, almost 5,000. This was prior to a change in management and policy, although there are still many gassed. So, Milo became our new rescue and he is an amazing little beast. Sometimes he listens, sometimes he doesn't. Most of the time he's sweet, then he likes to pretend he's much bigger than he is and pretends to growl. He's supremely spoiled rotten. We are very lucky to be his humans.

In March, we had a visit with the whales. The humpback whale cruises on through the warm waters of Okinawa around February to May, while the polar bears freeze their keesters off in the North Pole. The annual migration is an amazing spectacle. Words just cannot describe how amazing it is to see these magnificent mammals in their natural habitat.

Well, I'm off to take care of my domestic duties now. I promise to be back to share more of our island adventures. Sayonara for now.