All posts by Philippe

Iriomote Diving

Okinawa is a great nature destination – above and below sea level. We decided to follow our B&B host Kiyoko’s recommendation and booked a two dive outing with Take Diving. Pick-up at the BnB, cool.

Take Diving has a great boat with a changing room, a toilet, hot water shower, and a well established procedure including a dive site briefing. Satoko-san, our friendly instructor, was a bit afraid that the wetsuit and the fins would not fit my size. It did … just.

The first dive at a site called “Flower Garden” is a shallow dive (max. 15m) to get used to the underwater equipment again. As the name of the Flower Garden suggests, large colorful corals spread like flowers under the water with countless tiny blue, red and yellow fish hovering around. Even through relatively weak sunlight, I (Yasuko) felt like being in a fantasy world and wanted to be part of it and float in the water forever…

Nice bento lunch and a quick snorkel around Baraso Island – a super tiny island purely made of coral.

With a bit more confidence (especially for Yasuko) we set out for the second dive at a location called Offshore Nakano (max 25m). We moved around in a spectacular setting made of many mini valleys, small tunnels, coral corridors and caves where Satoko-san pointed out all those many creatures we would otherwise never have spotted. One of such animals was a one-eyed little fish which Take-san, the owner of the diving school, observes for 8 years already. Interesting.

In the evening we were invited to Take-san’s house for today’s dive video viewing and local booze tasting of Awamori.  Take-san and Satoko explained again the fish we observed during the dives and we were awed the second time by the beauty of the colorful, tiny yet amazing underwater creatures.

We dove in many countries but we concluded that Take Diving is the most professional, best-equipped dive shop we ever chartered. However, we have no other Iriomote dive school to compare to. There may be other good ones around.

Phone: +81 9808 56871 / www.takedive.com (not well done)

Kayaking to Mariyudō-no-taki waterfalls

Iriomote’s number-one attraction is a boat trip up the Urauchi-gawa (浦内川), a winding brown river reminiscent of a tiny stretch of the Amazon.

We rented a kayak from the mouth of the river, Urauchi-gawa Kankō (浦内川観光 ) and  paddled up 6 km braving against the wind. Then we joined the tourists who came by the boat  to continue another 2 km on foot all the way in the jungle  to the waterfall.

For us, the main attraction of this trip is the paddling  along the mangrove  rivershore. Iriomote island  is the only place in subtropical Japan where one can do that.  The one hour of rain all the way back and the winds were not a problem at all. We got all wet but the warm temperature balanced it out.

Except occasional boats which carry sightseeing  tourists (who always waved at us), we were floating on the water all alone sandwiched by  the dense, humid Lmangrove forests and forgot that we are in Japan.

 

Ramen: Focus on Taste

We had a 30 minutes layover at the Fukuoka airport to take the connecting flight to Ishigaki – more than enough for a quick slurp of Yasuko’s favorite ramen style, tonkotsu. And as we are at an airport, the usual food service efficiency needs, bien évidemment , to be cranked up a notch or two.

It took precisely 4 minutes from “Yes I do” (want ramen) to the first slurp.

Just respectfully …

  • chose your version of ramen and pay for the voucher at the vending machine
  • move to your own private ramen booth
  • shout “sumimasen” (excuse me) to get the waiters attention
  • hand over the voucher with some extra instructions (for those in the know)
  • wait 2.5 minutes until that steaming bowl flies to you

And now, ladies and gentlemen, close your eyes, lower your heartbeat (oooohm), ignore any funny noises around you, overclock your taste buds and follow the second instruction on the ramen manual sticker on your left which reads: “Focus on Taste” 🇯🇵🍜

 

Swift-S1-FES, 3.20m

Allgemeines
Modelltyp: Segelkunstflug
Masstab: 1:4, Scalemodell
Ausführung:  Voll-Gfk/Cfk, HS-Version
Fabrikat:  xmodels.it
Bezug: leomotion.com

Technik
Spannweite: 3.20m
Länge: 1.74m
Abfluggewicht: 6,736kg
Schwerpunkt: 100mm (kein Trimmblei notwendig)
Sonstiges: Flitschenhaken
Spezielles: IDS-Anlenkungen (Tragflächen)
Fes-Antrieb (Getriebe): LEO 4031-2550, (6.7:1)
Klapppropeller: RFM-Cfk17x13″, weiss
Spinner: RFM-Cfk-Scale, 45mm/6mm
BEC-Regler: Hobbywing Platinum Pro 120A Platinum HV V4
High Voltage
Kabinenhaube: Klappbar wie beim Original!

Radio/RC FrSky
Sender: FrSky X12s
Sender Programmiervorlage: Mike Shellim F3F Slope Racer
Empfänger/RX: FrSky-X 8 R
Sensor: UniSens-E, SM Modellbau
Akku Antrieb: 6S-Lipo, 4’500mAh/22,2V/40C
Stützakku RX:  OptiPower Ultra-Guard 430

Servos Futaba/MKS HV
Höhenruder: MKS HV747, 13.8kg.cm/7,2V
Seitenruder: MKS HV747, 13.8kg.cm/7,2V
Querruder: S3173SVi, 4,3kg.cm/7,4V
Wölbklappen: BLS173SVi, 7,6kg.cm/7,4V

Leergewichte:
Rumpf/Haube/Seite: 1’720g
Cfk-Steckung:    286g
Höhenleitwerk:    218g
Tragflächen: 2’540g
Total 4’764g

CMS Modellflugzeuge

Overnight at a temple, Jimeiin, in Koyasan

We stayed one night at one of the temples in Koyasan. Jimeiin is a quiet, serene temple with beautiful gardens.

We were welcomed by young monks and escorted to our traditional Japanese room, which overlooked two different, wonderful gardens. For dinner, a tasty tofu and vegetarian meal was served by monks and next morning we were also invited to participate in morning prayers at 6:30 am. We don’t need to be a Buddhist or to understand exactly what is happening. We can sit there quietly and simply appreciate that mystic and mysterious experience.