Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Life's a Dance

Travel Photo Thursday March 10, 2011

“Life’s a Dance you learn as you go, sometimes you lead, sometimes you follow, don’t worry bout what you don’t know, life’s a dance you learn as you go.” These words come from the refrain of a popular country and western song. Though American in origin, these words are more than fitting to describe the Okinawa lifestyle. Okinawan people have a real zest for life. They love living life to its fullest and that love is expressed beautifully through their lifestyle, music, and dance. Whether it is high energy Eisa, the more subdued and formal classic Ryukyu dance or the happy-go-lucky Katashi, Life in Okinawa is a dance and that dance is alive and well. One of the places you can see that zest is at a theme park, aka tourist trap called the Ryukyu Mura.

One of the first such parks in Okinawa, Ryukyu Mura is more than just the reconstruction of a period village. The houses and buildings on display were at one time actual family homes, residences, taken from the various islands throughout the Ryukyus and brought here to be protected, preserved, and treasured. These simple dwellings are practical, open, airy, and alive with history. Built using mortis and tendon joints and wooden pegs instead of nails, they are extremely sturdy and have withstood the ravages of time and the fiercest typhoons.
In addition to the historical buildings, there is a talented and dedicated staff to assist you. Dressed in period costumes, they perform traditional dances and provide visitors a living history lesson of what life was like long ago and in some more remote places still is. Whether it is playing music on the sanshin, weaving traditional bashofu, milling cane, processing sugar, or creating works of art from clay, the park gives visitors a glimpse into the lifestyle and psyche of what was and still is the Okinawan people.

Ryukyu Mura is located in southern Onna Village just north of Yomitan Village. It's easy to find, from Hwy 58, just follow the signs...


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5 comments:

  1. I've always wanted to have more zest in life just like these Okinawans... They are just wonderful people to be around because they believe in how to live life to the fullest. Thank you for sharing...

    You might want to check out mine: http://jorietravel.blogspot.com/travel-photos-thursday-macaws-vs-lories.html

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  2. I'd drink the wine before jousting with it on my head.
    http://holesinmysoles.blogspot.com/2011/03/travel-photo-thursday-march-10-kwazulu.html

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  3. Laughing here! That would be a fun dance to learn. Just make sure my bottle was plastic!

    Thanks for posting to TP Thursday.

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