As far as our Jet-Skis go, we are keeping them at the local marina (called Kadena Marina) that is on the Air Force Base Kadena about 15 minutes away from where we live, because we live in a Tower and don't have a driveway or parking spot large enough to keep them in. We had to give them "names" when we filled out our paperwork at the marina, so we called the Kawasaki "His" and the Yamaha "Hers"... cute. Despite the names, we share them both. The marina only charges us $30 a month to keep them there and free access to their boat ramp as well.
The only problem right now is that we don't have Jet-Ski licenses. They apparently run about $600 each, but the real problem is that the only English-speaking classes run twice a year, and the next class isn't until March 2010! Come on! So, Matt and I are currently on the hunt for someone, anyone, who can get us some sooner. In the meantime, everyone, including the man who sold us the Jet-Skis, has been telling us that the Japanese Coast Guard is very easy to avoid and no one has ever been stopped that didn't have a license. After hearing this, and wanting badly to take our new toys out on the water, we planned to do so in a low-key area.
Today was Halloween, and instead of taking our kids Trick-or-Treating (umm...we have no kids) we decided to take out our new Jet-Skis out to an island off of Okinawa that is much more secluded to try them out! The double trailer is wider than our truck, so Matt was a little nervous driving out there, being that he's never towed anything before. The drive from Kadena Marina to this remote island's marina was about 45 minutes. However, he did really great, and we had no problems getting there or getting in the water. We had a blast! The water was warm, turquoise and crystal clear! We rode all around remote little islands and explored the area, switching Jet-Skis a couple times. We even found an empty little beach on one island, beached our Jet-Skis right on the sand, and got out and swam for awhile! I wish we had some photos of what we saw, however, we don't have our waterproof camera case yet (it's in the mail!), but I'm sure we'll be back out there again soon once we get it.
Matt and I ended up riding for almost 2 hours before coming back to the ramp, and the only damper to the day was that we ended up getting stopped by the Japanese Coast Guard. No, not out on the water on a boat, but on shore in an unmarked van! That's right, the Coast Guard just drove right up to us and gave us a ticket! Grrrrr!!! Just our luck right?!?
We were sooo mad, but then again, we were breaking the rules and taking a chance. We have to go down to their office tomorrow with our Jet-Ski papers and we will find out how much the fine is. Hopefully, they will go easy on first time offenders, and will be able to help us get a boating license ASAP!
We are now back home, eating Chili, handing out candy to Trick-or-Treators, and about to catch up on some Season 6 of Entourage... Happy Halloween everyone!