Monday, April 07, 2008

Okinawa Trip: Queen for a Day

I started yesterday morning with a 2-mile run. I think Brian was pleasantly surprised by how slow I was - although I'm more impressed that I ran on my vacation! There were a couple of paratroopers out running - and boy, can they book it! I guess I'd want them to be in great shape if they were coming to rescue me, so it makes sense.

After that, we headed to the Shurijo Castle, (see above right)the ancient residence of the Ryukyu royal family who used to rule Okinawa before it was part of Japan. We dressed up in crazy kimonos and got our pictures taken. (see below left) I only included the photo of me since Brian's parents have no way of contacting me to say "Get our photo off your blog, you crazy broad!"

The castle was definitely one of the most beautiful places I've ever been. There are a lot of Chinese influences to the architecture, and the history was fascinating. Everything was so colorful - and different from Western castles.

For dinner, we went to a restaurant where you grill your own meat at the table. There's a grill with coals right in the middle of the table. They bring platters of seasoned raw meat that you cook to your liking. We had lamb, sirloin, chicken, sausage, ribs (off the bone), and spicy sausage. We avoided pork belly, squid, large intestines, chicken gizzards and trotters (whatever those are.) I also had the best salad ever - a Japanese sesame salad with seaweed and a really yummy sesame/peanuty dressing.

Today, we're headed for an overnight stay at the YYY resort on Ie Island. Woo hoo!

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