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Native Okinawa to Work at the Olympics in Nagano

By: Victoria L. Moore

Date Posted: 1998-02-14

Saturday the streets of Nagano paved the way for the world's largest international sport commencement. The 18th Winter Olympic Games officially began. Nagano, Japan certainly put its best foot forward with the opening ceremony production as 50,000 plus spectators gathered in the stands at the Minami Nagano Sports Park.

The opening ceremony painted a majestic picture depicting a wide variety of cultural themes showcasing the ancient beauty of Japanese culture and technological advancements unique to Japan.

This week Michiko Arakaki, a 27 year-old from Okinawa, will travel to Nagano prefecture to be an interpreter at the Winter games.

Michiko works at the Head Office of the Bank of Ryukyu, Securities and International Department. She also attends the University of Maryland part time majoring in business management.

Michiko was the only person selected from Okinawa chosen to perform duties as an interpreter. Her duties will include working alongside of the bob sled team, and spectator interpretation. She will be expected to interpret information immediately as the events progress.

Michiko felt honored to be chosen to represent Okinawa, volunteering in support of the Nagano Olympic games. This is her first time to Nagano and she felt excited about meeting and interacting with new people and different cultures from all around the world. She also felt a tremendous sense of pride that the bank where she worked allowed her the time off to participate in this historic event.

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