Tanegashima, Japan - May 2015
Crazy Climate

- A typhoon and a crazy rainstorm.

This month once again the weather takes the center stage. Now May and already a typhoon hit Tanegashima. This particular typhoon was much more of a rain event with much lighter winds than the couple of typhoons which came to the island last October.

Picture - The totally flooded upper farm.

A few days later the island was hit with over 12 inches of rain within 24 hours. This flooded out the farms and turned a local, normally slow running river, into an unbelievable sight. This was really an unusual amount of rain, even for this place.
Nice Harvest

- Shai picked a lot of radishes and turnips from the upper upper farm today. We were hanging out with a friend at night.

Picture - Home - Shai picked a lot of radishes and turnips today 1.
Picture - Home - Shai picked a lot of radishes and turnips today 2.
Picture - Home - Shai picked a lot of radishes and turnips today 3.
Picture - Home - We were hanging out with a friend at night 1.
Picture - Home - We were hanging out with a friend at night 2.
Preparing Abalone

- We received quite a few abalone from the neighbors in the rear house today.

Picture - Home - This particular species is known as tokobushi in Japanese with the scientific name, Sulculus diversicolor supertexta.
Picture - Home - This is a picture of the other side, the edible portion, of the shells.
Picture - Home - Shai was kind of enjoying washing the abalone.
Picture - Home - We put aside a few pieces to eat raw as sashimi.
Picture - Home - About half of these were cooked with soy sauce and sugar while the other half were cooked with crazy salt and olive oil.
Rock Beach

- We decided to go to the rock beach again at low tide to look for some abalone shells.

Picture - Minamitane West Coast Pier #6 - Us at the beach at low tide.
Soccer Practice

- Shai began soccer practice today. The name of the field is Minamitane Chouei Rikujyoukyougiyou Maenomine Gurauundo....quite a mouthful for sure. There is a group for the younger kids and another group for the older elementary school kids. Shai is in the younger group, of course, and at five years old, he is the youngest player. The soccer club is meeting every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 5:30 pm until 7:30 pm.

Picture - Minamitane Town - Yup Shai is actually playing soccer now.
Picture - Minamitane Town - Shai really enjoyed playing soccer today and plans to join the soccer club.
Tropical Storm Noul

- Today a tropical storm called Noul slammed into the island.

Picture - Home - An upper farm picture during tropical storm Noul 1.
Picture - Home - An upper farm picture during tropical storm Noul 2.
Picture - Home - An upper farm picture showing damage from tropical storm Noul 1.
Picture - Home - An upper farm picture showing damage from tropical storm Noul 2.
Crazy Rain Storm

- Now only three days after a typhoon hit the island and today was a crazy rain storm.

Picture - The river which flows to Maenohama beach after the rain.

This storm easily produced over a foot of rain in about 24 hours. The result....a flooded lower farm.

Last year I put in a perimeter drain, which as you can see in the picture, empties out into the adjacent jungle.

Before the drain, this farm used to turn into a pond which covered most of the area.

Picture - Home - The lower farm completely flooded out now.
Picture - Home - The upper farm was really flooded, with the runoff pouring over the front wall.
Picture - Minamitane Town - This usual trickle of a stream turned into a mini Niagara Falls. This is located next to a Japanese shrine.
Picture - Maenohama Beach - This river is next to Maenohama beach and is usually quiet but not today.
Picture - Maenohama Beach - This is the access road to Maenohama beach which was flooded out today.
Picture - Maenohama Beach - Nice fishing spot. Nope, this is actually a farm close to Maenohama beach.
Beautiful Driftwood

- Me and Shai went to the rock beach close to the house to collect stuff again. We found this beautiful piece of driftwood. Although you cannot notice from the picture, this piece is huge.

Picture - Home - This driftwood is now being used as a decoration on the outside entry of the house.
Anno Imo Potatoes and a BBQ

- The neighbors from the rear house offered to give us anno imo potato vines today. These vines, which are sown into dirt hills, will then become the very famous anno imo potatoes. The vines are not sold in stores and you need to get them from someone already growing the potatoes. Pretty sure until recently you actually needed a license to grow these potatoes, although probably only if you intend to sell them. Then in the afternoon we made a barbecue using the new picnic table.

Picture - Minamitane Town - The local grocery store was selling a package of green beans for 158 yen....pretty expensive.
Picture - Home - Received more produce from the neighbors in the rear house again. Cabbage, along with nilla, and shiso leaves.
Picture - Home - Received a bunch of shiso leaves for the farm today 1.
Picture - Home - Received a bunch of shiso leaves for the farm today 2.
Picture - Home - Made this picnic table using wood from the old patio.
Picture - Home - Anyway it was nice enough for them to simply give us the vines but they actually came over and worked in the lower farm.
Picture - Home - The neighbors were kind enough to supply a special fertilizer which they brought over in these bags.
Picture - Home - They said for the potatoes to grow properly, the vines should be sown in traditional farming beds.
Picture - Home - The potatoes are now growing in the lower farm and will be ready for picking in a few months.
Picture - Home - We made a nice barbecue using the new picnic table.
Picture - Home - Another nice day today. We are really enjoying Tanegashima.
Shiso Leaves

- We received these shiso leaves from the neighbors in the rear house.

Picture - Home - Shiso leaves on a plate and arranged in a nice pattern.
Picture - Home - Shiso leaves taste fantastic, especially with sashimi, and are really nutritious.
Happy Birthday Pets

- A happy birthday to our wonderful doggies who are now two years old.

Picture - The doggies looking pretty cool.

And a happy birthday to our really cute kitty Urura, who is now about two years old. Actually we found this crazy cat on the street in our old neighborhood in Nara, Japan. We picked this date for her birthday since it coincides with our doggies special day.

Picture - Home - Really cute doggies for sure.
Picture - Home - Temperamental Copernicus eating his birthday meal.
Picture - Home - Affectionate Einstein eating his birthday meal.
Picture - Home - Nice picture of the little Uhura.
Picture - Home - She is enjoying her birthday meal of kani kama.
Karaoke Tonight

- Karaoke singing at a community party today.

Picture - Minamitane Town - Karaoke at a fun community party with me singing 1.
Picture - Minamitane Town - Karaoke at a fun community party with me singing 2.
Picture - Minamitane Town - Karaoke at a fun community party with me and Shai singing 1.
Picture - Minamitane Town - Karaoke at a fun community party with me and Shai singing 2.
Picture - Home - Completely wasted after the party at night.
New Fishing Store

- This fishing store is called Endou Tsurigu (Endou fishing gear) located in Minamitane town about 8 minutes from the house. This is now the only fishing store, that we know about, in town after Akirasan closed his place in the middle of town. This is a very small store owned by a very nice couple. The store stocks basically everything you need for fishing including bait. After spelling the American and Japanese space agencies NASA and JAXA, respectively, it was time to take out the letters, made up of carrots, in the upper upper farm.

Picture - Minamitane Town - A picture of the front of the store.
Picture - Home - Shai picked a lot of carrots today, way to much for us to use now.
Picture - Home - This was a sample of the smaller carrots he picked today. The harvest for today ended up around 200 carrots total.
Toasting Marshmallows

- Yup finally time to cover the rusted metal counter behind the stove. The tiles were extra from the old house in Nara. Purchased some white grout online and used one hundred yen coins for tile spacers. Then at night we made a barbecue. Tonight Shai decided to toast some marshmallows. Yummy.

Picture - Home - The stove wall now looking a bit better.
Picture - Home - Shai really enjoyed toasting marshmallows outside tonight.
Picture - Home - He learned the real trick is to brown them without turning them into little pieces of charcoal. Whoa this really tastes good.
 
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