|When I first visited Shodoshima, I confess that I had never even heard of it. Once here, I found it a wonderfully relaxing place. The views of the Seto Inland Sea are picture-perfect and the island’s many olive orchards remind me of home. It was Mr. Oomine who told me that Shodoshima is known as Japan’s Aegean isle and I can see why.
||Mr. Oomine happens to be the president of Shodoshima’s International Friendship Club, a very active organization that has been conducting exchanges with high school students in Guam for over 30 years. According to him, the exchanges began 33 years ago when a group of Guam high school students came to the island to practice their Japanese. They joined in classes at a local junior high school and stayed with the local students’ families. “This year we’re planning to have them clean the school.” Mr. Oomine said with a grin. “Kids in Japan clean their school everyday but apparently they don’t do that in Guam.” Well, that’s certainly one experience they could only get in Japan.
||I’m frequently invited to Japanese elementary and junior high schools to speak about the importance of healthy eating and to give cooking classes. I would love to do that for children on Shodoshima and share my Italian food culture with them. Mr. Oomine thinks this is a great idea so I’m quite excited about it. And as he happens to be the president of the Genuine Sanuki Udon Association, I’ll have to get him to teach me how to make Sanuki udon!