In the Name of Friendship?

Filed under:☽2004,Culture — posted by JAWjaw on 7/21/2004 @ 11:14 pm

Okinawans have a saying, “Once we have talked, we are friends.” The saying itself is a nice sentiment, but is it a romanticized idea. In my many years of experience, I do not think I have seen a relationship between S.O.F.A. status personnel and locals that doesn’t include some form of monetary benefit. Whether it is the ever-smiling and “enthusiastic” local girls squeezing a few free drinks from hard-up and lonely G.I.s or the ongoing “friendship” that includes a favor entailing the use of a few base privileges. The local idea of friendship is primarily a business relationship masked as friendly banter between persons of two cultures. I honestly ask if you are a S.O.F.A. status person who does have a friendly relationship with a local that never included the use of any base facility or privilege, please let me know. I would love to hear your story.

A Mid-Summer’s Night!

Filed under:★2004,Misc — posted by JAWjaw on @ 2:50 am

One of my favorite times of the year is Okinawa in the middle of the night during summer. We are lucky enough to live on a hill with a decent view of the ocean from our balcony. In the middle of the night, at about 2 or 3 in the morning, there is usually a light breeze blowing away the heaviness of the humidity. A few cars are still rushing by the house, but not so many that the smell of gas fumes becomes obnoxious (which happens in the daytime). Every once in a while a fruit bat glides past a nearby tree. The lights from across the bay gleam and the stars in the sky twinkle. It is a very peaceful, but not dead quiet, time when a person can sit and let all of their thoughts just wander undisturbed. This is the time of year that Okinawan island life is at its best.

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