Saturday, January 5, 2013

Okinawa- Oops, we're in Fairy Land!

Two things I was utterly and ridiculously excited for: The Aquarium (check! Ended up being better than I could have imagined) and the Pineapple Farm. The gift shop apparently was incredible and had everything pineapple you could imagine. I pretty much drooled at the thought of Pineapple wine, pineapple cake, pineapple cookies. John even started to call my suitcase "the wine suitcase" because I talked about it so much.

After the most stop-and-go, nauseated bus ride of my life (hey, at least I got to ride the same bus as my ancestors), the bus driver looked at us gaijins and told us that it was OUR stop. The Pineapple Stop. The person at the front desk of our hotel told us that the bus drops you off RIGHT IN FRONT OF the Pineapple Farm.

Is it any surprise that I ran to the front? That I quickly shoved the money in the gate keepers hands, while casually remarking "Huh, it's a bit more expensive than it said online"? That I didn't question why someone was handing me a map when it supposedly should be automated cars that drive you around the farm? I think the biggest clue was when we started reading signs for FAIRIES and enchanted forests... but NO. I still assumed it to be the beloved Pineapple Farm. I'm sure it's just around the corner, as soon as we complete this hidden treasure map and free the white fairy...

For reals. This happened.

Somewhere between the butterfly garden and purple fairy land, John finally broke the news to me, "uhhhhh, I don't thinnnnkkk this is it..."


Tropical Okinawa Fruits apparently does NOT include the Pineapple Farm

At the actual pineapple farm. With the automatic carts

Lunch at Family Mart
Mexican man FTW
Next stop: Orion Brewery!

Goya pasta!!!
Post-goya face
I begged for this photo
but he did this one all on his own
Orion Cans over the years
Contemplative over the Purple Sweet Potato ice cream...
The view from our room... which was attached to the aquarium
This was after our third attempt to get to the beach

Friday, January 4, 2013

Okinawa- The Churaumi Aquarium

We arrived at the airport early. Too early, if you ask some people. So early, the gates for AirAsia weren't even open yet.

What can I say, I like to be overprepared.
 Okinawa's weather was amazing!! We arrived in Okinawa late at night and took local buses up to Nago the next morning. I get irrational when I'm hungry so we were sure to pack lots of snacks...
 The Churaumi Aquarium!! Inside a whale shark :)
 I was super freaked out by the huge fuzzy worms inside the touch pool...
 The most amazing part of the aquarium by far... Three whale sharks, fish, sting rays, HUGEEE Manta Rays. It literally gave me goosebumps. We stood there for at least half an hour just staring. You can see the comparison of the rays' wingspan with human sized heads...

 Then we went outside to see the dolphin shows!
They had Christmas Carols in Japanese... which was pretty intersting

This is BillAyyyy!!! Our favoritest whale everrr
 To see why BillAy is so amazing... (His trainer was also SUPER into their choreographed dance)
We contemplated buying a stuffed "BillAy" to commemorate our trip

Pretty much the best picture EVERRR
Brown sugar ice cream
Spent more money for less Coke. But it's pretty!
Hotel Robes