In March 2015, Anthony Bourdain visited Okinawa to film an episode of his travel series Parts Unknown for CNN. Yuki and I played a small part in the production. I helped set things up for a couple of weeks before shooting, and Yuki worked with Tony and the crew for several days during filming. It was a happy and exciting time in our lives, as on March 25th 2015, during preparations and filming, we also bought our home in Motobu and got married.
Yesterday, June 8th 2018, at age 61, Anthony Bourdain took his own life.
The tragic news has made us look back on the impressive work of Anthony Bourdain. To be honest, as a vegetarian I had never watched his shows to pick up tips on cooking. I saw him as a travel writer and filmmaker, rather than a celebrity chef. One of the first episodes I ever watched was “Bourdain in Beirut” from the series No Reservations. I had never seen anything like it. Bourdain came across as a man interested in the human condition that used food as a point of commonality.
The numerous episodes showed the diversity of life across the planet while also revealing the similarities that bind us together as humanity. Across the world families and friends come together to eat, people search for safety and security, for meaning and happiness.
His death is also a reminder of the importance of mental health programs. Depression and suicide are global and affect millions. I’ve placed some links below.
Our thoughts go out to his family, and his team at Zero Point Zero Productions.
My original blog posts about Anthony Bourdain’s visit to Okinawa
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.
International Association for Suicide Prevention
Samaritans (UK) 116 123