This December in Yokosuka Japan, a good sightseeing opportunity, 100 of us from the USS Ronald Reagan were invited to the JS Izumo, our Japanese equivalent. The JS Izumo was conducting a mochi pounding ceremony (mochitsuki), to celebrate the new year. Honestly, I didn't know what to really expect.
I don't normally blog or make videos of myself in uniform, but I'll make an exception about this experience because it was so unique and interesting. I don't want to say too much about my job or what I do, but I just want to focus on this experience.
Onboard the JS Izumo, waited for us tables, pyramids of soft drinks and non-alcoholic beer, and a small stage for all the leaders of both ships to speak from. After a short speech from both triads, talking a lot about the appreciation of the friendships between both navies, and the importance of that friendship in this particular area of the world. They talked a bit about the culture of mochi pounding, and the gifts that both ships exchanged. The Japanese ship gave a large Daruma doll and the US ship gave a large christmas reef. They both talked about the culture significance of both items in both languages.
The food was great too. They had tons of food lined up for us. Several types of fried foods, and different mochi as well. They even had something that I haven't tried yet in all my time in Japan. Mochi soup (Zouni). Super fresh Mochi that was prepared that morning.
They've been pounding the mochi throughout the morning, and they started allowing the americans try. After waiting in a long line of children, I tried my own luck.