16 May 2008

Driving Test and Mt Eboshi

We went to our driving class this morning, which was very interesting. The Safety Officer for the base is a retired Marine who has been in Sasebo for 38 years. He was very funny and taught us a lot of useful information about driving around. It was really cool because we had a special guest in the class. The Sasebo Police Chief and his Chief Criminal Investigator were there to observe the class. We then took the test which was 50 questions which Em and I both passed. After lunch we came back and took our driving test which we both also passed and we were issued our Armed Forces Japanese Driver's Licenses. All in all we spend about four hours in class. This is absolutely nothing compared to Japanese Driving School. Driver's Ed in Japan is highly controlled. It costs about $3000.00 to take the class, you don't' get a learners permit, so mom and dad are not allowed to teach you to drive, if they do its a big employees and their families, and only if they have a valid stateside license.

After class we got the paperwork going to get our household goods sent to our new apartment which will be next Thursday, the 22nd. We are very excited. I so want to get into my own place and start decorating.

On the way back from there we passed the Outdoor Adventure Center and I rememberd there was a hike leaving at 1600 for Mt. Eboshi, which I had wanted to do. I paid and got a spot reserved and took Em back to our room where she was looking forward to taking a nap. I changed and headed back for a nice hike. As I thought, the other guys on the hike were all the same sailors I'd been with all week checking in and taking classes so we had a good talk, as several of them are coming to the Essex also. Mt. Eboshi is about 900 meters tall, which is a little less than a mile. We probably hiked about half that. Not too far, except it was a fairly steep grade, and not what you'd call a "developed trail". The view though, amazing. Unfortunatly there was a lot of haze and fog, which messed up the pictures, but the eye could see through it well and I saw the whole town, the base, the LCAC base, the fuel depot, everything. It was amazing.

Also today, we ate at Mike's Tex Mex, which is tucked into what appears to be an alley, but isnt, just a simple one-way street between some buildings. The food was amazing, better than Mazatlan or Azteca, thats for sure. No free chips though, which was a bummer but its ok, you don't care when you get the awesome food.

Back at the Lodge now, getting ready for bed, gonna have fun tomorrow, might get a cellphone, we'll see.

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