Himeji Castle:  Top Secret Ninja School??

Himeji Castle: Top Secret Ninja School??


“There are no rules of architecture for a castle in the clouds.” ~Gilbert K. Ches James Bond:  “Do you have any commandos here?”  Tiger Tanaka:  “I have much, much better. Ninjas. Top-secret, Bond-san.  This [Himejijo] is my ninja training school.” ~You Only Live Twice Ninja training school or not, Jody and I recently made our … Continue reading

The Last Samurai’s Castle: Nijojo


“I’ll tell you how he lived.”  ~Nathan Algren, The Last Samurai A young Japanese Emperor Meiji is featured in The Last Samurai, surrounded by his court in an immense and minimally-appointed tatami-floored hall.  The palace is unquestionably Japanese, with sliding door panels adorned with gilded scenes of cranes in flight and tigers crouched for an attack … Continue reading

Dive Against Debris Lesson Guide

Dive Against Debris Lesson Guide


For those divers interested in qualifying for the PADI Project AWARE “Dive Against Debris” (DAD), please review the below PowerPoint briefing .  For any questions, please contact me thru Dive the Blues Scuba on Facebook.  Thanks for your interest and involvement in helping to care for our oceans! diveagainstdebris_lesson_guide_v2-1_0

What a Hoot:  Owl Cafes in Japan

What a Hoot:  Owl Cafes in Japan


 “Don’t count your owls before they are delivered.”  ~J.K. Rowling But count them when you see them!  It seems that animal cafes are becoming much more deeply ingrained in Japanese culture.  While still rare on Okinawa, it’s not hard to find a “Cat Café” in most any major city one can visit in the main … Continue reading

Infamous Infamy:  Prime Minister Hideki Tojo

Infamous Infamy:  Prime Minister Hideki Tojo


“At the Imperial Conference on December 1 (1941), it was decided to make war against England and the United States.”  ~Hideki Tojo, General, Imperial Japanese Army I used to work at United States Southern Command in Miami with a fellow Naval Aviation whose flier callsign was “Tojo.”  He was a Navy Commander, an F-14 Tomcat … Continue reading

Strolling with the Spirits: Okunoin Cemetery

Strolling with the Spirits: Okunoin Cemetery


“Monsters are real, and ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win.” ~ Stephen King “Spirit, are you there?” I find myself tentatively whispering in my mind not wanting to ignore the screaming silence as Jody and I stroll the depths of the massive and picturesque cemetery in Japan called Okunoin. … Continue reading