Saturday, October 25, 2008

Tour book day (again!)

Ahh another tour book day - that book gives me so many giggles (and Adrienne so many headaches!) I've been scouring the book for places to go and planned a whole day up in Nago for us on Saturday - lots of short stops, but plenty still to do when we go next time :) So we begin the day by going to this awesome bakery called ZaZou to get the best chicken sandwiches and a snack for the road (we didn't have breakfast) We got there just as it opened and got fresh sandwiches and our CC Lemon and set off down the 58. We laugh about needing a route 58 sticker because it seriously takes us everywhere just like route 66 at home :) So I'm flipping through the book marking our progress and looking up things we see to decide if we want to go there some other day (yes we do!) And we're watching the road go by and when we get further north all of the sudden the building aren't so close together and the ocean breaks into view and we both suck in some air with a big WOW to follow - it's is incredibly beautiful here!

The water is such a gorgeous shade of blue and turquoise - not a bad view while stopped at a light!

The Statue of Liberty and the Okinawa Hollywood sign made us laugh! We're not sure what it was for but funny for sure!

Our first stop was to a waterfall to eat our lunch (the book said it would be nice) The directions say to turn at Sukuta Village and follow the small sign that says waterfall. We missed the turn and had to turn around then we went all through the village and saw no sign, but there was only one road to turn on so we went back and turned there and took that road until it came to a dead end. Huh, no more directions in the book...and this is all we see!

Thankfully a Japanese couple comes out to their car and I march over with my tour book and point to the waterfall part and he makes a showering motion with his hand and I nod, he then makes his hand into a fish or something and waves me toward that VERY SMALL sign down this very small path - here we go....we start walking down the path and Adrienne looks at me and informs me this is the kind of place I might take her if I were going to kill her and leave her to die - no worries, I wouldn't bring lunch for that - ha ha! Besides, I'd be stuck trying to get back by myself - NO GOOD can come from that!

We come to the waterfall (yea!) and I insist on climbing up the rocks to sit by it because there's this AWFUL noise and we're not sure if it's power lines or bugs (not sure which is worse!) and I'm hoping the water drowns it out. So we sit and eat our lunch - YUMMY! and I stick my feet in the water which feels marvelous on my bug bites (I think they're from outside, not our apartment, thank goodness!) After we're done eating we trek back to the car and Adrienne asks where next so we head back to the 58 to find the Banyan tree that is over 300 years old and the stone tablet that was a protest to Nago becoming the capital instead of Shuri.

My directions say head south from the Nago intersection...UMMMM we have no idea what that means but I finally find some more instructions in a different part of the book that says it's near the grocery store and post office which we happen upon and finally find the tree. Adrienne sees no where to park so I make her pull over so I can go take a picture. We can't waste all that hard work and not go look at it! So there's my Banyan tree - exciting huh?

Next on the list was a short walking tour of a traditional Okinawan style house (currently a residence so we can't go in) and a prayer temple. There is a misprint in the instructions so we get turned around and back on the right road 449 not 448...oops! Adrienne was getting a little irritated with me, but was a trooper despite the directions and thankfully they were better after that :) We did say that if the only place we argue is the car then we're doing pretty well! Anyway, we park near a different post office and walk the 3 blocks to see the house...I snuck around the rock wall for a full picture (shhh don't tell) apparently the rock wall and the clay roof and the wooden sliding doors are the "old Okinawan home" style

We then went to the opposite corner and walked 2 blocks and turned and walked another block past the preschool (yes, this is what is put in the book) and come to the prayer temple which was under construction in one part and being prayed in at another. We look around and head back to the car - Adrienne just has her camera and I have my tour book and we're walking down the middle of the road - no other white people in sight and here we are trekking along - it was probably a really funny sight to the few people that drove past us!
On our way back we saw the world's biggest butterflies, think small bird size which I'm convinced came from this caterpillar - now I know I don't have big feet, but that caterpillar is almost half of my foot!! Crazy...
Next stop was the glass factory - I have a crush on the Ryuki glass, but this wasn't a very good shop so I was disappointed. Last on our list was the Pineapple Park (the real reason for the trip, but it seemed like a waste to just have one stop!) This was by far the highlight and on the list if anyone comes to visit! We bought our tickets and then got on our very own pineapple tram (programmed in English just for us!) We then learned that pineapple is a combination of pine cones, because it looks like one and apples for it's sweet flavor, hmmm, ok! The tour was fun - we giggled through most of it
Little pineapples

Us on our super speedy tram (it was slower than our car if that's possible!)

Afterwards we wound our way through the shell museum and then to the pineapple store - you could taste all things pineapple - cookies, cookies, and more cookies, cake, pie, wine, juice, candy, chocolate, yogurt chips, and who knows what else. They also had perfume which I would actually buy it smelled SO good (but they wouldn't let me spray it to see if it was still nice on me) and for the price I didn't want to risk smelling funny! We got a couple of boxes of cookies for our treat and headed home - good times - Sunday has been quiet with church and I'm off to grade so I can do report cards this week!


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Cheryl said...

Sounds like you had a fun weekend! I liked the pineapple tram! You guys both look great and I can see that you both are losing weight. Wish I could say the same for me! Hugs and kisses!