Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Umi no Hi- Celebrating the Ocean

Yesterday was the Japanese holiday Umi no Hi, a holiday celebrating the ocean and to give thanks to its bounty. I love that the Japanese are so respectful and appreciative to nature and take time to stop and give thanks for the wonderful world we live in. Living on an island, the ocean is part of everyday life. I have always loved the beach, who doesn't, but living here has made me appreciate the ocean even more. Living in a foreign country is hard, but the breathtaking beauty of the ocean and the fun the beach brings has made living here so much easier. I can be having a crappy day and turn the corner to a beautiful view of the ocean and I am instantly happy.

I decided I couldn't let the holiday pass without stopping by the beach. I went to a nearby beach and grabbed a Hawaiian shave ice with the 30 local teenagers who were out of school. I sat on the rocks and ate my shave ice. The locals use this holiday to be off work and spend time at the beach. When can we get a holiday like this in the states??

We spent lots of time with the ocean this weekend because we are now owners of our own kayak! Jake had been wanting to get one since we moved here, but I didn't think it was worth it because there are so many places to rent one. Jake was checking out the Craigslist like website here and found a two-seater kayak with all of the gear for a great price. Jake convinced me of all of the cool places we could go on a whim in our kayak, so I agreed. We tried it out on Sunday at one of the places we had been eyeing. It was an incredibly beautiful day and kayaking was a blast! We paddled to a secluded beach and walked around. We tried to snorkel but failed, as the sea is still a bit stirred up from the recent typhoon. I also had a broken snorkel, which I discovered after I got a mouthful of seawater. After hopping back in the kayak, we saw tons of jellyfish, so we were glad we didn't stay in the water long. We are so excited for many kayaking adventures in the near future. 

We are also blessed to have a wonderful view of the ocean from our house. We are on the east coast, so we don't get the sunset and aren't usually up for the 5 am sunrise, but we still get to see beautiful skies as the sun drops down on the East Chine Sea on the other side of the island. We have had some incredibly beautiful evenings in our backyard. How is it that sunsets never get old?

So here is to the ocean and all of the joy and beauty it provides. How lucky are we to live in a world with sunsets, beach days, marine life, seafood, and all of the wonderful things the ocean bring!


  1. This is gorgeous!! Making me more excited that Oki might be our home next summer!!!

  2. Gorgeous pics! Kayaking looks so fun and that shaved ice made my mouth water!

  3. Wow those photos are beautiful. I hate to admit it but i am jealous!


  4. What an amazing holiday! I think every country needs to have a holiday that celebrates the ocean.

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