Sunday, July 11, 2010

Clouds and Islands

Well, not much happening here with us in Amami. Is the rainy season finally over? It's usually over by July, but we've had torrents of rain, where it doesn't let up all day. It's a novelty for a while, since it doesn't rain for 6 months out of the year in California. But enough is enough. Everything is damp and molding. We all bought plastic sandals because our cloth and leather ones were rotting. It's been sunny for a couple of days, so maybe it's finally over. Anyway, Theo pretty much has what little we've been doing in his blog. Here are some pictures I took from our various plane flights between the islands.
This is Amami Oshima, where we stay. There are extensive reefs of mostly dead coral, and lots of forested land, although this is the northern part near the airport, where it's mostly agricultural. The water has been murky with all of the rain, too, so not good for snorkeling and underwater photography.
I love the clouds here. We are so cloud deprived in California.
Ishigaki coast. The nice thing about flying to the southernmost islands of Japan is that we go to fly over most of the islands south of the mainland.
The isthmus of Ishigaki.
I think this is Okinawa. We landed there for a brief stopover. It probably used to be a nice island before they leveled it, paved it, and erected an endless row of monstrous megaresorts. Throw in an American military base and that pretty much does it. We went there a couple of years ago (The Big Nawa) and that was enough for me. It really made me appreciate how relatively unspoiled Amami is.
Maximum development.
Shades of blue.

The island of Dr. Moreau?

Yakushima. Not a great picture, but one of my favorite places in Japan. (We also went there in 2008. See post here.)
In contrast to the southern islands, this is Osaka, in the typical Japanese urban shades of gray. I'm always glad to get out of the city and back to the green hills and blue waters of Amami.

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