My teammate, Alisha, and I are being hosted by the Kawasaki family, who live in a three-story modern building in downtown Kesennuma. The second floor houses Yasuyuki’s maritime law office, while the couple’s apartment is on the third floor—an enviable commute. The apartment is incredibly well designed and impeccably furnished, with rounded curves instead of the usual angles, and a bright kitchen with walls of windows overlooking the city.
We visited a shark museum and ice aquarium in Kesennuma with Senae on our last day, two of the oddest tourist attractions I’ve encountered. The shark museum had a large display of shark attack story headlines, and the shark film focused on the fishing industry in Kesennuma and didn’t feature even one shark (unless you count the fins in the soup). Perhaps this is a wild guess, but I’m thinking the museum is funded by the shark fishing industry. To enter the ice aquarium, we donned parkas and opened what resembled a freezer door. Rows and rows of fish hovered in translucent blue, frozen in time.
Senae excelled at cooking, and she taught us how to make spring rolls, and served us an oishii (delicious) dinner of shark fin soup, sake (salmon) salad, and flavorful rice. She sent us off to our next destination with freshly baked apple pastries and chocolate cake.