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Coronavirus in Okinawa It's been one year since the first Covid infection was confirmed in Okinawa. The virus was first seen in a taxi driver that had contact with Diamond Princess passengers when it disembarked in Naha. From then, it spread to thousands of locals Japanese nationals and nearly one-thousand U.S. military personnel. Okinawa has 8042 cases of coronavirus infections by local citizens and 940 by U.S. military-related personnel. There have also been 101 deaths associated with...
December 15, 2020, was the coldest in Okinawa this winter with the lowest temperature of the season recorded at 19 of the 25 observation points in the prefecture. Kunigami Village, the most northern area of the main island that makes up Okinawa, incurred the coldest temperature of 11.6 °C (52.9°F) at 0655. Tokashiki Village, located on an island approximately 26 kilometers (16 miles) due west of Naha Airport, recorded a temperature of 12.9°C (55.2°F) which is 2.5°C lower than normal. Naha...
Eat
This is a Japanese curry rice chain restaurant very popular with Americans. Back in my Navy days, it was very common to overhear sailors talking about starting off a night on the town by eating CoCo Ichibanya curry. Everybody seemed to love it. Thinking upon that now, I can understand why. CoCo Ichibanya gives western customers just about everything they want in a restaurant experience. High levels of convenience, great taste (and a great smell too, according to their motto), as well as the...
Thanks to social media, the recent boom in plant-based meats and dairy alternatives are surely catching attention. Millions of people worldwide are making the switch to a vegan lifestyle. According to The Vegan Society, "The number of vegans in America grew by 600% from nearly 4 million in 2014 to 19.6 million in 2017." So, while finding vegan products in grocery stores across Europe and the Americas are commonplace, how about Okinawa? I had the unique opportunity to be both a meat-eater...
The Haebaru Town Central Community Center has a flowerbed that is planted with around 700 red spider lilies (Lycoris radiata). They are currently in full bloom before entering Autumn Equinoctial Week (September 19, 2020 – September 25, 2020). The flowers provide for a beautiful crimson color to the surrounding area and attract many butterflies. Red spider lilies is a plant in the Amaryllidaceae family. They stand approximately 50 to 70 centimeters in height without any branches, leaves, or...
By September 11, 2020, Okinawa Regional Customs had 16 cases of illegal drugs caught at Naha International Airport and other ports of entry in the first half of the year, reporting from January to June. This is a decrease of 38% from the same period the previous year. Japan Customs reports that one of the main factors of lower drug seizures rate in Okinawa is due to the fact that international flights and cruise ships have been canceled since February due to the prevalence of the new...
A trip to the beach can sometimes involve a lot of logistics. Food, parking, water sports equipment, researching if it is safe or not, etc. Sometimes the fun is in all the planning for a more remote getaway. Other times, I just want to go somewhere where all of that is taken care of for me. During those beach trip days where I am feeling a bit lazy, I head to Kadena Marina. Kadena Marina is a beach resort-like area located on a section of the ocean reserved for the US military. However...
All residing in Okinawa should be prepared for the landfall of Typhoon Maysak by now. However, there are a couple more hours for quick last moment preparations around and inside the home to be made. Ensure that everything is tied down and secure. Further, check that window and doors seals are protected so that no water can be pushed through by the gusting winds. If necessary, fill a bathtub of water in the instance that power is lost one may still have potable water if there is no stock on...
We Okinawans are known to have quite a lot of events that require all the family members to gather at. We enjoy these functions as they allow us not only to get to know how each of the family members is doing but also to make the bond amongst them stronger. So today, I would like to introduce one of our unique cultural holiday that is called Obon. Obon is a Japanese event that welcomes ancestors' spirits visiting the home; however, how it is done in Okinawa is very unique and I must say...
DMM Kariyushi Aquarium may not be the largest aquarium in Okinawa, but it does provide a good time for couples, families, or aspiring marine biologists. Getting there is not a challenge either. It's a 10-minute drive from the airport if heading south on 58 or 10 minutes from the last exit (A4) after the airport junction on the expressway—no need to head hours out of your way for an aquatic underworld experience in Okinawa any longer! The aquarium is located on the second floor of Iias...
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