Yomitan's Sunflowers, Red Peppers & Sugar Cane

Saturday, August 3, 2013


Our neighbor's beautiful peppers


Like in Europe, sunflower fields pop up all over Yomitan where sugar cane and other crops once were, to replenish the soil. And incidentally brighten up our house because someone loves to go pick armfuls of them!


Sugarcane growing right up to the East China Sea


Goya, also known as bitter melon. It tastes awful, but is grown and eaten all over the island in the local cuisine during the summertime, and is full of amazing nutritional benefits. It's said to be a big reason why the Okinawan diet is one of the healthiest in the world. 


Our fave... of our Okinawan neighbors, we're the closest to him and his family.


The cutest ladies get together early every morning to prepare root vegetables to be sold in this little market down the street from us.


They had stopped for a few minutes to touch my belly!


Yomitan, Okinawa. What a totally remarkable place we get to live in, and what an adventure and learning experience it's been these few years in this beautiful culture.

It's incredible to live in a part of the island amongst the oldest generations, that are still working, primarily with their hands... in farm fields or fishing in the East China Sea. Even as I write this, I'm watching one of our neighbors knee-deep in the turquoise water with a pointed straw hat on and tall sea foam green boots, throwing his large net out. 

We also appreciate how warm and generous our neighbors are to us. Everything from giving us continual gifts from their gardens, to politely bowing each time we see each other, to being so excited about my pregnancy and our baby. They love children here. Men and women stop to touch my belly and ask how far along I am now, and coo over how excited they are to meet him. It's a wonderful place to live, and to be pregnant! We are just so thankful to have been given this time out here!

15 comments:

  1. This is beautiful friend. Love seeing more of your daily life!!! love you...sending you kisses from Holland:) love Katie

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    1. What are you doing blogging while on your Europe vacay!!
      Have fun, love! Miss you!

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  2. Gorgeous! I love the simpleness of life in Okinawa, and the beautiful scenery!

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  3. I see bitter melon in the ingredient baskets on Chopped all the time! I feel like it usually stumps the chefs on how to use it without it tasting gross. interesting that it has so many healthy benefits!

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    1. It tastes so bad. But is soooo good for you!! They serve it in chanparu here, which is basically a stir fry with noodles or rice and lots of veggies. It's good like that (:

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  4. What a great write up about your city and I love that y'all live out in town! I fought against living in Oki for so long when Ben and I were talking duty stations, but the culture out there just seems magical, simple, and peaceful. I hope to experience it one day!

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    1. I really hope you get to, too. It's amazing!

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  5. Oh this is just wonderful. Simply lovely. Thank you for sharing a small bit of life in Okinawa and giving us a lovely reason to enjoy beauty today!
    :)Rebecca

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  6. That sounds so wonderful! And ugh, I hate bitter melon!

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  7. Gorgeous photos! I love seeing your side of the world!

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  8. Beautiful photos, it must feel like a whole other world there. I really enjoy reading about your adventures and experiences it's not only interesting but in many ways inspiring. Thanks for sharing!

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  9. I love looking at your idyllic life. It is a dream of mine to travel to Japan and China. Not sure I will ever get there but I certainly hope so!

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  10. I'm so jealous they get to paw all over your belly!!
    You and Cam are so great to completely embrace the foreign culture you are living in. Best deployed couple EVER! :)
    love, lanneybear

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  11. love this so much. absolutely gorgeous!!! The most beauty is found in simple pleasures!

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