Looking Good:

Okinawa yakisoba: 沖縄風焼きそば

Finished MOS school and had a chance to fill out a “dream sheet” in 1980.

A small number of us chose Okinawa, and we all got to go.

I was 19 and had no wife, kids, or even a girlfriend back home. I joined the Marines to go and see places like Okinawa.

I was assigned to Makiminato, Camp Kinser. We could walk to Naha. Naha was large enough that you might go all night without seeing any other Americans. Attempting to escape the influence of military bases and seeing how the local people lived their lives was enjoyable. There was no curfew at the time. Atrocities committed by US personnel would come later. We drank more than our share, but stayed out of trouble. Mind your manners and you’d find the local people to be warm and friendly. We made friends and were invited out to a few gatherings. 

Christmas Tree

Many of us were spending our first Christmas away from home. In those days, If you were old enough to be in the Marines, you were old enough to drink on or off base. We had a shop Christmas party where people wrapped and exchanged bottles of booze.

A guy from California received a small Christmas tree from his Mom back home. The tree came with real pinecones and lights. After unpacking the box and putting the tree together the lights were plugged in. Now it was time to look sad and lonely and pose for the photo I took. Then off to something else besides thinking of Christmas.

 

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