Yokosuka & Change of Plans
Over Christmas, my mom and I ventured across the globe to visit my brother, sister-in-law and nephew. After 17 hours of sitting on a plane, we landed in Narita, greeted by my brother, Rob. I was exhausted, only to learn that we still had a 2-hour drive to their home in Hayama, an adorable beach town full of Japanese surfers, carp, and shrines. As I pretended not to sleep in the backseat, we headed towards their home.
Rob, Alden and Chip are living in Japan because of my brother’s navy career. I get claustrophobic after five minutes on a ship, so I can’t imagine embarking on that career choice, but Rob continues to be very successful at his job on the seas. More importantly, he has a supportive wife who is willing to be a part of the adventure and put up with the unexpectedness of the navy.
Speaking of unexpected, Rob was called out to sea, 36 hours into our visit. Stupid, North Korea! It was really sad to see him go, especially as Rob is the tour guide extraordinaire, but we still had a wonderful time with Chip and Alden, exploring Japan. Fortunately, before Rob left, we were able to see the navy base where Rob works, and go on his ship, the USS Fitzgerald. I’m always amazed (and nauseous) when I go on one of these ships. The use of space, managing of people and simple daily functioning while a ship is deployed, is pretty incredible.
The naval base in Yokosuka, not only holds ships, but is basically a city in itself. Grocery stores, McDonald’s, apartment buildings, houses, a gym and even two movie theaters. And a Starbuck’s.
Before Rob left, we all enjoyed a late afternoon on the beach, allowing Chip yet again, to be our main source of entertainment. On a clear day, you can see Mt. Fuji.
We also watched a wedding in a hotel, overlooking the beach. Perfect location!
The next day Rob received his orders to leave, early in the morning. While it was sad to see him go, we were glad to get that time with Alden and Chip, and were thrilled to find out that Rob would get back in time for Christmas.
We missed you, Rob!