So - here's a question - go teach at school, or have photo ops with naval officers in dress whites. Hmmm...such a dilemma.
Wait minute, is there really any question about what needs to be done when such a situation presents itself?
My presence at school was not absolutely necessary the end of last week, so I took nenkyu and went to a change of command ceremony at the Navy base up in Sasebo. My friend was becoming the captain on the USS Guardian, and though I don't know him and his wife very well yet, Skii (wife) persuaded me to come to the change of command and their wedding (renewal of vows) anyway. The promise of all those men in uniform...hmmm...you can imagine it was so difficult to convince me to go. Unfortunately, in the drama of everything, my camera got misplaced, and so this is the only photo I have from my trip.
However, maybe losing my camera was intended - instead of focusing on the photo documentary of the trip, I've been focusing on everything I felt... Since I've been Japan so long, it was strange to be on "American soil" on the base. However, being there at the ceremony also reminded me of all the fond memories I have of visiting bases, attending air shows, etc. with my family. At the ceremony the Guardian looked so festive, and the speeches about/by the captains really made made me (sorry for the cliche) swell with pride. It takes true leaders to give all the credit back to the people that they are leading. Since I was also privileged enough to spend a brief time with both of the captains and their famies, I saw firsthand what impressive leaders they were off the ship as well. I found it endearing to witness how much they loved their families - and how much their families loved them. The ceremony really made me proud to be an American. I'm so thankful that we have men like that defending our nation.