Living

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...
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...
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...
Eat
Goya Day isn't necessarily a holiday in Okinawa. However, it's the recognition of a traditional fruit grown in Okinawa, goya. While being classified as such, most outside of Asian countries wouldn't believe so as it is bitter in taste; it's known more widely around the world as bitter melon. Goya is a staple of many Okinawan dishes as you can cook—or even order—a lot of traditional foods prepared with it. The most popular that you'll find on a menu is goya chanpuru. Though, it can be found...
If you have tried to plan out your trip to Okinawa, Japan around any May, you have probably heard of this largest Japanese holiday called Golden Week. Golden Week consists of a series of four national holidays which are Showa Day (Apri 29), Constitution Day (May 3), Green Day (May 4), and Children's Day (May 5). Amongst those, the Children's Day (Kodomo no hi) is very well known so today I would like to tell you what it's about. Children's Day was originally called Tango no Sekku, which...
As you go into a supermarket from the end of February to the beginning of March, you see a lot of pretty pink colored snacks being sold. They often come in a bag with a drawing of two people. These are called ‘hina-ningyo’ or ‘hina dolls’ which are observed for the doll festival that is for girls, celebrated in Japan every March 3rd. In Japan, families with a daughter(s) display a set of beautiful hina dolls on a tier of five or seven shelves to celebrate and pray for their healthy...
It doesn't matter which side of the world that you came from to get to Okinawa, loving to watch movies is something that most of us have in common. I know some people love to watch TV in their homes in a totally comfortable atmosphere. However, I believe a lot would still rather go to the theater where they can watch it on a huge screen, emersed in the action. "But the movies are so expensive!" That's the first thing that comes to my mind, especially when our kids nag us to take them to...
If you have one or more children that constantly need your attention, and especially if their ages are apart, you might have been exhausted every single day trying to figure out what could tire them out. But that was till yesterday! I always wished that there had been a place that could satisfy both of my kids, having two children whose ages are 8 years apart myself. So today, I am introducing you to this amazing park located very south. It's in Itoman, Okinawa, but worth the drive: Peace...
Top