Every year I get a little anxious about this date. It’s not that I lost anyone in the ‘Great Tohoku Earthquake’, but it brings back memories of what happened. Not necessarily just to me, but to so many people who lost their lives, or families. I can go back re-read my posts about the earthquake. I can go back and watch video on YouTube about what people recorded. I can go back and look on my Facebook page and see what was written.
It almost reminds me of 9.11.2001. Where I was, what I was doing, watching all the events on TV. Horrific. Surreal.
Incredibly, horribly, surreal.
Words seemingly cannot describe emotions that ran through me those days, but even more so in Japan on March 11th, 2011. Mostly because it was so close to home, because it had directly affected how I and my family lived our lives. Fortunately, the Fukushima power plant was still more than 300 kilometers from Yokohama, panic, uncertainty, and the reality of the dangers of radiation fallout, were all too close.
I don’t think I can say I was scared of what was happening, just the uncertainty of the future, or how things might come was very worrisome. The earthquake that shook my building was unreal. I’m basically up on stilts, four stories up. A little wavering is an understatement. It was a real mess. One of the strangest things I learned was actually having a idea of when an earthquake was coming. Because there were so many aftershocks, and some pretty large too, you could actually ‘hear’ the rumbling, like a huge truck driving by your house. Even though it was just a few seconds before the real shaking started, it was almost just enough time to put your socks one, grab your kids, close the curtains, or run to the door and keep it open. It certainly was a strange sensation to actually ‘hear’ the oncoming of an earthquake, scary to say the least. Not knowing the magnitude of it, large enough to hear it, meant it was going to be a decent sized one, just you didn’t know how big.
I don’t really like to watch images, or be reminded of what happened that day, but it is important to remember the people who lost their lives, the damage that was done, and certainly for the failures of the Japanese government and TEPCO (Tokyo Electric Power Company). However, today might be one of the few days I actually, purposely, watch TV. Every year there are stories of how people have dealt with the disaster, or how people have gone back to their hometowns to find different, new towns in place.
Just like every year, a moment of silence will be taken at 14:46 across the country in various companies, schools, institutions, shops, and other places where people gather. We’ll all close our eyes, and think about how we live our lives, how people innocently lost theirs, pray for those who lost someone special.
A few more posts from 3.11 ↓↓↓