Saturday, February 27, 2010

Okinawa Earthquake

I hadn't planned on sleeping really late today, but ended up getting out of bed at 5:30 AM anyway...Well, "getting," probably isn't the most descriptive word to use for my exit from this morning's slumber; "shaken," is probably more accurate.

We had a 7.0 magnitude earthquake that was centered about 50 miles from us this morning. No real damage, and everyone is fine. So far, there are no local reports of injuries, and only some broken water pipes nearby.

The quake seemed to last for several seconds, and I recall thinking to myself that it sure was lasting a long time.

Perhaps we were in need of some excitement!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Okinawa Comprehensive Park

I went with my wife to the Awase Home shopping center (also known as the "OK" and "Gracie" stores). While out and about, we headed over to what many Americans call, "Comprehensive Park." I think it is actually called the Okinawa Athletic Park.

The park is huge! There is a nice 5k running course that is well maintained and even padded. There is a freshwater pond, and the large carp and placos will eat anything you throw at them (watch your fingers!).

I hunted for a geocache there, but the only thing I found at ground zero (GZ) was a bunch of garbage and junk. There were plenty of sharp objects in the brush (glass, an old steak knife, discarded cans, etc), so I didn't really poke around in there very much at all. I questioned the cache placement, since there were plenty of other secluded spots in the very large park. With that one quickly placed on my "no thanks list," we soon departed.

On the way to Kadena Air Force Base after a stop at the park, I saw yet another "engrish" sign. I enjoy these, and think that they give Okinawa plenty of personality.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Nago Central Park

Today I drove up to the city of Nago with my wife and kids. We were hoping that there would still be a few trees in bloom, but we were too late. We still had a good time.

We started with lunch at CoCo Ichibanya, an icon among Americans here in Okinawa. I had thin sliced pork curry.

Next, it was off to Nago. At the park, there is an impressive foot bridge, plenty of jungle terrain, and countless trails to walk. The hills are steep, the views are stunning, and the bugs don't eat much.

I went three for three on geocaches today, including picking up one that I had previously "DNF'd," or "Did Not Find." All in all, a good day, even if it was a little wet out.

Routine Maintenance

Another cacher contacted me this past week and informed me that the magnets were coming loose from one of my geocache containers. So, I made a trip to the nearby park where it is hidden, and glued the magnets back in place.

I like this little park. It's a quiet spot in the middle of urban clutter. It's also easy to miss when driving by. The tree above is entirely fake, and I thought it was an interesting item.

This park is located near the following geocache: Shady Character GC1DKJ4
(I think PJ will get a kick out of the hint for that one).
If the weather holds up, I'll be making a trek to the North with my family. We've not been able to go check out all of the cherry blossoms on the upper half of the island, so today might be our best shot.