Amami Superman Photography

A Place to Share My Photos

May 7, 2009

Amami Park

Posted by Amami Superman

Amami Park was opened in September of 2001. It's a cultural/nature center museum kind of a place. It tells a bunch about the culture of Amami as well as the nature and has a gallery of Tanaka Isson's paintings in the main building. Outside on the grounds it has many different paths to wander around on. It also has a observation deck several stories high to check out the surrounding area.

This last Monday was Green Day (Midori no hi, みどりの日)and they had a few different events for kids to have fun. I didn't run around and check out all the booths. As soon as I got there, I met a good friend and we got into a long conversation. Next thing we knew, it started to rain.

They had a booth on how to make paper airplanes. They also had one for how to make balloon animals and a few others that I didn't get a chance to check out before it started to rain.

Nikon D60, Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 @ 18mm, 1/400 sec, f/3.5, ISO 100 -- EXIF
Field Out Front

Nikon D60, Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 @ 32mm, 1/200 sec, f/7.1, ISO 100 -- EXIF
Frisbee Toss

You can see in the photo above that it's pretty dark as the rain clouds moved in.

Nikon D60, Sigma 30mm f/1.4, 1/30 sec, f/2.8, ISO 360 -- EXIF
Peek Hole View

After it started raining everyone ran for cover to the inside of the main building. Here they have different displays for the different islands that make up the Amami Islands. Jade is looking into a peep hole while pressing the buttons for this display. When the the buttons are pressed, special visual effects happen. I didn't get a chance to check it out. It got crowded rather quickly.

Nikon D60, Sigma 30mm f/1.4, 1/30 sec, f/2.8, ISO 640 -- EXIF
Grandpa! What waxy skin you have...

They had different settings portraying the "Good Old Days" of Amami. This particular one had an old man sitting at the steps of his home.

Nikon D60, Sigma 30mm f/1.4, 1/25 sec, f/2.5, ISO 1600 -- EXIF
Jungle Life

Nikon D60, Sigma 30mm f/1.4, 1/15 sec, f/2, ISO 1600 -- EXIF
One eyed habu staring at me...

Nikon D60, Sigma 30mm f/1.4, 1/30 sec, f/2.8, ISO 1600 -- EXIF

Nikon D60, Sigma 30mm f/1.4, 1/30 sec, f/2.8, ISO 1400 -- EXIF
Wanna Wassle?!

Nikon D60, Sigma 30mm f/1.4, 1/30 sec, f/2.8, ISO 1250 -- EXIF
Messed up game of Menko

Menko is a Japanese game young boys used to play a long time ago. The rules were explained to me once before. I found a site that explains the origin and basics of the game pretty well. That site can be found HERE. You basically throw a card down and the wind created may flip other cards over. You get to keep the cards you flip if any are flipped over from your throw.

Nikon D60, Sigma 30mm f/1.4, 1/20 sec, f/2.2, ISO 1600 -- EXIF
Say Cheese

This was kind of a fun optical illusion setting they had. You stick your face in the hole and it takes the face of this guy. There are others sitting to the right and left of you. When you press the buttons of this display, the faces of Atari Kousuke and other singers from Amami appear on the faces of others and they sing for you. The optical illusion of this is it's only a half circle. There's just a big mirror in front of you but it looks as if everyone is sitting in a big circle. It's cool because the people you see in your peripheral vision appear at a different angle on the mirror in front of you so they seem like different people.

Nikon D60, Sigma 30mm f/1.4, 1/30 sec, f/2.8, ISO 1400 -- EXIF
Kenmun in the gajumaru

Kenmun is Amami's version of bigfoot. Kenmun is said to live within the thickest of the gajumaru's(Chinese Banyan) hanging roots. The lore behind the kenmun is a bit different with who you talk to here in Amami but some things are always the same. The Kenmun likes to deceive you. For example, it will offer you noodles which are really worms. The Kenmun's body is also strangely out of proportion. The torso is very small with long legs and arms. It's said that if you saw a Kenmun sitting down with its legs to its chest, its knees would be higher than its head.

I completely pulled a "Dumb Gaijin" move this day. The inside of this area required an admission fee of 500 yen. I absent mindedly walked in the exit taking photos of my daughter Jade. As we left the entrance, my wife found us and told us we needed to pay to get in and I was all like, "Get in to WHERE?" and then I saw the admission booth next to the entrance and realized I walked the whole thing backwards.

Nikon D60, Sigma 30mm f/1.4, 1/125 sec, f/5.6, ISO 140 -- EXIF
Gabriel Martinez

We some friends that come from Spain. This is their 5th child. They have 7 children all together. Anyways, on the way out we met them coming in. Gabriel seems like tough kid to me. I like him a lot. We go over to the Martinez' home for dinner every once in a while.

Nikon D60, Sigma 30mm f/1.4, 1/125 sec, f/5.6, ISO 110 -- EXIF
Alfredo Martinez

The girl on his shoulders is his second youngest. I'm not exactly sure how to spell her name. I'm not very good with Spanish. I just call her Julie. She's pretty shy as you can see. Alfredo is here with his family working for the Catholic Church.

There's nothing special about these pictures. I just thought it would be fun to show you our Golden Week experiences.


Jeffrey Friedl said...

It's shocking how much Kenmun looks like you and your wife.... almost a mixture of the two!

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Keep the language clean please. I have family that see this. Tell us what part of the world you're in.