Sunday, July 27, 2014

[more] signage

a sign in five languages, not one of which is English

we like to think that the Art Man takes all of our garbage away, and then makes art with it

(my favorite is "price of the common" and "newold")

I love this especially because it is at the fake Abercrombie & Fitch store
(attached to fake Levi's and fake Guess)

This is a sign placed in the middle of the lawn at the police station:

I attracted so much attention taking this photo that I got followed by a police car and
questioned later. 
(And what have YOU done for the sake of your art, lately, huh?!?)
This is a commonly found notice in restaurants.

(note the inclusion of a photo of them back when they made homemade soba!)
But WHAT is the reason?!?

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Sunset on the lagoon

J. and I went out on a dinner cruise to celebrate our 11th anniversary.  The boat took us out to a tiny island just offshore where we bobbed around and had dinner while the fishies waited for us to toss them our extras.
(so that's what a 12 mile long island looks like from a couple of miles away)

Korean tourists love to wear matching outfits.  I hope to acquire a
"his-and-hers" set for J. and I at some point...

Managaha Island

looking down through the floorboards of the boat


Monday, July 21, 2014

A date with BR

This morning I announced that it was BR's turn to go on a "date" with me.  He immediately rushed to his room and reappeared in a new outfit: a button-down shirt and dress pants, and--in good San Diegan style--flip-flops. 

We made our first stop at the gift shop of a museum so that he could purchase a camo helmet he'd had his heart set on.  We walked into the building and instead of going toward the exhibits, he strutted purposefully into the gift shop.  The ladies behind the counter couldn't contain themselves.  ("Oh, just look at the little man!  All dressed up!  Oh, and he knows where he is going, too!  Yup, he must have his mind made up already...") He counted out his money and then added in enough for an American flag patch, too.  He felt SO proud. 

"I suppose that next time we go hiking into the jungle you'll be wanting to wear that hat, eh?" I asked.  "No!" he answered, emphatically.  "It's not a 'hat.'  It's a helmet.

Eventually it was time for lunch so I took him to a favorite place right on the beach.  He placed his order then set up a game of dominos for us.  When the food came, he couldn't get over how delicious it was.  "Oh man, this is just SO good.  How do they even know how to make this?  I just can't believe how good this is..."  Talk about a satisfied customer.

And then I tried to share my portion with him.  He took a couple of bites but became suspicious when I kept pressing him to eat as much as he wanted.  "Hmph... Don't think I don't know what you're trying to do, Mommy." He wagged his finger at me. "You're trying to fatten me up so you can eat me!"

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Pose au-Naturel...

I wish I could leave this as a stand-on-its-own post, but we have exactly one solitary blog reader who would get the joke, so I really ought to explain. 
Remember that Saipan is a destination for Japanese, Chinese and Korean tourists (and Russians, too, although I have not seen the Russians keep to the same photographic traditions as the others). Every day we pass by many, many such visitors enjoying a joyride in their rented brightly-painted American-made SUV or convertible (usually a Ford Mustang).  A favorite activity is to drive to an especially scenic point on the island, and then to strike a pose in a sundress--or bridal gown!--with a tropical flower tucked behind an ear, or while leaping in the air, silk scarf blowing in the breeze.  Yes, often the setting is the beach at sunset, but a good portion of the time the car is the main backdrop.  But always, always, the peace sign.  In EVERY photo.
My spoof is not only inspired by the old Keenes, man-shorts, and Dr. Seuss t-shirt I happened to be sporting that particular morning, but also the especially attractive-looking vehicle in our scenic carport, with its busted up fender and headlight.  Busted, mind you, by a careless Chinese tourist driver in his rented bright orange sports utility vehicle (none of us were hurt, thankfully).
L. was right there with me for the photo-shoot, catching the ironic vision:

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Breakfast Picnic


Hey, P-roc, check out the right angles of the branches on this tree!
stringy-haired-tree (it should be called that)


We tried to find a beach and instead we went on a long hike (and then finally found a beach)

The title basically sums it up.  Except that it was really much more dramatic than that.  This was before we knew that some of the beaches were so remote that it required a serious hike through the jungle and some steep downhills, to reach them.   I had simply set out one day, with the kids and a map, and thought I would actually end up at a beach relatively soon.
Silly me.
We would never have even found this path except that some other cars were parked in the brush over by the side of the road and we pulled over to investigate.
"Oh, a path!  No problem at all, we'll just follow it"
There were some ropes and vines set up on the steepest parts, to help keep your footing in the mud.
And then you had to pick your way over and under some of these branches (I forget the name of this tree but it is so weird looking!  No leaves!)

Still going...(are we making any progress??)

And finally...sunshine!

And we could see immediately why this beach got its name.

"Old Man By the Sea"


Totally worth the hike in.  And out. 
(It is also worth it to wear some kind of shoe, and not just flip flops.)

Sunday, July 13, 2014

how long does it take to fill up a 25 x 11 pool?

Well, if the water pressure is really low, and you only have one hose, then it takes four very long
oh-mom-I-can-hardly-wait days...
But was it worth the wait?

Aw, yeah.

Friday, July 11, 2014

in which we explore the jungle

This set is from a few weeks ago, when we first arrived in the new house.  The kids decided that we needed to explore the jungle outside our door on the first day in the new place.   
silly me, I had L. take a "before" shot, with the idea in
mind to have an "after" one....


L. was our nature photographer:

And BR was our brave bushwhacker, clearing a path before us...

I couldn't help but think that P-roc's mom would especially like some of these plants.  This one was very sharp and the root system seemed to be above the ground (zoom in if you can):
(massive spider web)
 We can't get over how the hermit crabs travel so far from the beach.  Our house is a good distance from the water, halfway up the mountain, but lo and behold...

and two nights ago we found an even much larger one in our driveway!

"bearded trees": I don't know if you can see this very well, but it has leaves
growing all over the trunk and branches.  I think it looks like a beard! 

And then we didn't get an "after" photo because jungles are hot and sticky and sharp and kinda scary and sometimes it hurts to explore them.  Personally, I like the kind with paths ready-made, but it was cool that the kids were up for trying it out without any at all.

(So now can we get back to the pina-coladas-on-the-beach part, please?)