Wednesday, January 6, 2016


Turns out that I have been using my punches wrong for the last 15 years.   They are for dried seaweed, so that your food can smile at you.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Japanese Peaches

Japanese fruit is delicious!  Their peaches are white inside but so wonderful sweet.  Two was just the beginning today.

Sunday, May 31, 2015



Miyajima is an island near Hiroshima, known for the floating o-torii gate in front of the Itsukushima Shrine.   Our guide told us that the whole island is so sacred that the shrine itself was built on piles, so that the building won't touch the island.   At low tide, you can walk out to the gate in front of the shrine.

The Japanese consider deer to be messengers to the gods.  The deer wander the island, amazing docile.  Until they see you holding food.  Then they come up and expect to share.  Even the squirrels in Washington D.C. were not this bold and insistent.

 I don't want to perpetuate stereotypes but I marveled as I watched the Japanese deer interacting or ignoring the tourists who at times were inches away.   Just the week before a girl was gored by a bison, when she stepped to close to take a photo in Yellowstone National Park.  It seems that even their animals are more polite than ours, or more tolerant of tourists. 

One final shot, as the tide came in.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

New Hair Cut

Moving across the world is sometimes not a big enough change.  Time to make this personal.

 These two pictures are when the stylist did my hair and when I did it.  I love the color and the sass.  I'm ready for summer.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Peaceful Day in the Park

 I spent time at the Shinjuku National Garden.  It was serene and peaceful.
 The cherry blossoms have passed but the Japanese have many blooming trees.
Amazing to realize that there was this oasis in the middle of the city...
And even harder to take so many pictures without including my new 10,000 best friends who were also enjoying the perfect weather.
This is the same park, seen from above.  Right in the heart of Tokyo.
Japan is teaching me about perspective.  Where you start and end the story changes it from a comedy to a tragedy.  How you frame your picture, changes it from a peaceful garden to a busy city shot.   I am overwhelmed or adventurous... with only a tiny shift in perspective. 

Saturday, April 4, 2015

 Spring has come and today was a blizzard of flower petals.  The wind blew, it gusted and the blossoms danced their way off the trees.  So many of life's joys are fleeting.  A moment of pleasure before the winds of time.
After trying and deleting a lot of pictures, I'll just show you the parking lot covered in petals.

Monday, September 9, 2013

South Korea and South Carolina are practically the same place

The more time that I spend in South Carolina the more I am amazed by the similarities with South Korea... and not just that they both start with South.

1. Barbecue: Korean restaurants barbecue the pork at your table to ensure that you get the fresh off the grill taste.  Carolinians spend hours marinating and smoking the ribs before they serve it.  
2. Family Ties: In both places, it all about where your people are from.  And how often you go back to visit.  And you had better respect your elders.
3. Fast Cars: What do Nascar and Seoul traffic have in common?  Fast cars going around in circles.
4. Street Signs: I find myself equally confused by the road signs in South Carolina as I was stumped by the signs in South Korea.  Both in the placement (or lack there off) and in the meaning. It seems that neither place speaks English as its first language.  And let's not mention the ridiculously low posted speed limit that no one follows.
5. War: Both locations fought a "War of Northern Aggression."  Just don't mention in South Carolina, that they were the ones that fired the first shots, started the war... and lost. And both places a littered with memorials to the soldiers of their civil war.
6. Christian Churches: There is a new one on every corner.  In South Korea they all have bright red neon crosses that light up the night.  Both locations enjoy the "mega church" experience.
7. Manners: You had better brush up on your manners because sometimes it seems that it is more important how you say something than what you say. 
8. Sports: The sports that they cheer for may be different (baseball vs. football) but the home crowd is always there with all their rituals and traditions to ensure a victory for the home team.  And heaven forbidden that you go to any stadium without a team jersey.
9. Weather: Hot humid summers? Check.  Melting if you step outside? Check.
10. Respect for Army: In South Korea the US Army provides the security that they need to live next to their crazy neighbor.  In Columbia, the US Army is one of the biggest employer and stabilizes the local economy.