Here We Go Now…

13 05 2008

Today was so exciting.  I was in such a frenzy all day.  I should have had breakfast.  

I met Joelle and her boys on Kadena and we headed up to Onna.  Pulling up to the market, it was much busier than the last 2 times I was there.  But there was a great parking spot just in front of the main doors for us.  Score.  Going in there were a bunch of people shopping and I was concerned that I was going to break some cultural custom by hoarding all the veggies.  One lady even asked if I was having a big party.  Yogi-san was very helpful taking each full cart to the counter to begin checking out.

Collecting 15 cabbages in one of the typically small Japanese market carts was a bit of a challenge.  I got a lot of strange looks.  And then 15 onions.  And 15 goyas.  And 15 heads of lettuce.  And so on.

Joelle might have had the funnest job — picking the flowers and arranging them into gorgeous bundles of color to be added to each bag.  And she was almost ridiculously excited about the fact that there were RED potatoes.  My eyes automatically go to the flowers.  The vegetables are cool, but the spread of flowers caught my eye every time I entered the building.

Things just went too smoothly it seemed.  We had 3 guys carrying large boxes out to the car.  Joelle placed the veggies in the bags and I went back for more and more and more.  Finally all the bags were full and all the boxes were empty and we loaded ourselves back in and headed out to deliver.

Finding the houses was even fairly easy.  Everyone had provided such great directions and it was cool to put faces with names.  All the customers seemed almost as excited as me.  And I was thrilled to be bringing healthy food to families all around the Kadena area.  Felt a little like I might be changing the world…  one goya at a time.

Starvation sent me digging into my own bag and I snacked on the cherry tomatoes with a smile on my face all the way home.


Fresh from the Start

7 05 2008

Since arriving on Okinawa in January I’ve seen the desire in many of the people I’ve met for fresh organic locally grown produce. Driving around all over in search of this myself, only finding a very small selection of what may be organic at the stands out in the countryside where I live. As much as I love buying veggies from the folks down the street I really don’t know how organic they are. And even then the selection and freshness has been less then satisfying at times. So the search continues.

Then last week I heard about this farmer’s market. I pictured something like the Pike Place Market back in Seattle where I am from. With the different booths and the vendors there actually selling what they have grown, caught, or created. After daydreaming about meeting the different farmers and picking my produce out among all the bins filled with perfect fresh organic vegetables and fruit, I could just barely wait to go.

A few other things to know about me at this point: I want a job, I am passionate about healthy living and respectful living on this earth. Also, I love opportunities for adventure!

Putting these things together with the new info on the farmers market just out of reach for most to go every week I see a way for me to provide a service to you and support my personal earthy granola agenda. After just days of thinking about how to go about starting a little business in Okinawa the details seem to be settling in to place smoothly and as though this somehow simply was meant to be.

Today, Joelle and I had our first adventure out to find the farmer’s market, though it wasn’t what I had expected it is still very exciting. We met Takeshi Ura-San and Yogi-San who helped us understand the how the market works and some of the practices of the farmers like picking the bugs off by hand…

I can’t wait for this to get off the drawing board!