I was only in Fukuoka for about 10 hours before I had to catch my pane to Amami. I made it to the airport with plenty of time, or so I thought. I checked my bag and made it through security in about 20min. But as soon as I got through security I was stopped and was escorted back to where I had checked my bag. I had forgotten that I had lithium batteries from my go pro in my bag and they were not allowed in the checked bags. I had to get all the batteries and my chargers out of my bag and put it in my carry on before going back through the security checkpoint. All the while, the attendants that were checking my bag and escorting me to and from the locations were so kind and helpful as well as apologetic. If this were to happen any where else other than Japan it would be a big hassle. I was able to make it to my gate shortly after they started the boarding process. I knew that there was some rough weather ahead of me and it might be a rough flight. There was even a warning that the plane may be diverted o Kagoshima. But the plane delayed a bit and were able to get to Amami Oshima.
Once I arrived, It was easy. I just took a bus from the airport to Tebiro Beach and walked a few blocks to my guest house. The weather was still quite bad and it would still get worse through the weekend. I checked into my room and walked to a local market to get some food for the week.
The wind and rain continued to grow, but the report showed that it was going to start blowing offshore in the evening. Back in June, my mom and stepdad stayed with a new friend Konosuke on the island and I was able to let him know that I was coming to Amami. I messaged him to try and meet up to surf while I’m here. He was busy for the weekend but he said that he could drop by and let me borrow a board. He is so amazing! Ko would find a minute in his busy schedule that day to come and meet me for the first time and let me borrow a board. I was so grateful to meet him and hope that he could get time off work to surf together on Monday or Tuesday. It is aspects of people like Ko that I meet all over Japan that makes me want to live here, but for sure bring this spirit back home to California.
Ko came through with a board for me and there was about an hour left of daylight left. I walked down to the beach and it was raining like crazy but howling offshore. I was able to get a few waves before dark and get a glimpse of this slab coming down on the reef as it was getting too dark to see anymore.