Last Weekend’s Fun

Last weekend we celebrated the 10th Anniversary of OIST. Well actually 11th; OIST was accredited in 2011. I know, I was there. As with so much else, Covid got in the way and the ceremonial had to be pushed back a year.

Anyway, we had an amazing weekend.

It started with a concert on Saturday night. Super duper violinist Eiko Kano played The Four Seasons with an orchestra of friends.

Eiko san

Lying on table in front of the stage are 4 violins, I go to have a look. They are guarded by an OIST colleague who tells me there are 3 Stradavarii and a Guarneri and I should be careful not to trip. Good advice. Wow!

Stradavarius ‘The Red Diamond’ one of the 3. I have forgotten the names of the others.

The concert was too good for language. For each movement of the Four Seasons she used a different violin. Nuts. As an encore, Eiko playing The Red Diamond, her teacher playing the Del Gesu, which is what cool people call Guarneri violins, accompanied on a 1930s Steinway just donated to the university, play some Shoshtakovich. All of this in a tiny village on the west coast of Okinawa! There was very little here when I arrived in 2011. Look at it now.

A unique experience. Eiko does not think that 4 violins of that distinction have been played in one concert before.

Super VIP dinner afterwards and I am seated next to Eiko, presumably because I can play the tin whistle.

Arisa is the super professional MC

Eiko, who is so much fun, and I discuss the salient features of the four violins and she clearly appreciates my input. Wonderful evening with much speechifying and so many old friends.

Lunch next day with Jonathan, Renee John san and the architects of the university buildings, Ken and Okomoto san. What great people, what memories. On to the big ceremony.

Peter makes excellent speech

Prime Minister Kishida san leaves dull meetings with Biden to send us a message.
Minister for Okinawa.

I spoke to him afterwards and asked if he could slip me a few bottles as I was off to Scotland. He said of course he could but I haven’t heard from him yet.

Governor of Okinawa, great guy.

Great event! My name was mentioned to wild acclaim. Incredible really – what a great adventure! I was so lucky to have been involved.

Congratulations and thanks to the organizers. I am so pleased I do not have to organize this kind of stuff anymore.

This is the sort of thing I do now.

Amazing stuff
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