Manhole Monday: Onna Village

Whew, it’s been a busy year! We’ve barely turned the calendar to 2013 and already the first mini-break of the season is in the books. I was lucky enough to tag along with my husband on a business trip to our former island home, where I shot this interesting manhole cover.

Onna Village

The photo was actually taken on the road to Maeda Point, a famous snorkeling and diving spot on the western coast of Okinawa. In truth, however, you’ll find these manhole covers for quite a stretch of road along this portion of the East China Sea. They represent the village of Onna, one of the best small resort towns Okinawa has to offer.

There’s a lot going on with regards to this cover, but it’s not too easy to figure out exactly what. The windsurfers are the most obvious depiction – it’s a frequent sight off the coast of Onna. Up in the sky, are those clouds blowing a sea breeze or flowers? Hard to tell. And on the bottom left, are those the cliffs of Manza-mou, one of the island’s most photographed natural sights? Or just an artistic swirl on the grating? Who knows. But don’t let the mystries of the manhole cover put you off from visiting Onna. It’s still one of my favorite places in Japan for a relaxing beach break.

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