I’m still overwhelmed by the disaster in Japan. We lived in Tokyo for 2.5 years when I was a kid (11-13 years old), and went through our share of earthquakes. They happened regularly; we’d stop what we were doing, wait for it to pass, and then continue. The first one I felt, I awoke to my bed shaking. I thought my dog was lying next to the bed scratching, and making it shake. Until I realized my dog wasn’t in the room. I ran downstairs to find my mother bracing herself in a doorframe, the bag of trash she was carrying spread across the kitchen floor. The glass doors in the cabinets were softly clinking. And my sister slept through it all.
It was almost a relief when the small tremors occurred, because we knew they were helping relieve the pressure on whatever geological event was simmering below: as long as we had little ones, there wouldn’t be a big one.
Or at least that’s what our parents told us.
Anyway, I still have a friend in Tokyo, and have been following her updates on Facebook, and the updates on the American School in Japan website. And I still remember how it felt when the earth started shaking.
I keep hoping the numbers of dead will stop increasing. But they don’t. I can’t imagine the devastation – the pictures are horrific. I go about my daily life, and for a while I can forget what’s happening in my former home. But to countless thousands, life will never be the same.
Spare a thought or a prayer for the people affected by this tragedy, both directly and indirectly. And look around you, and be grateful for what you have. We take things for granted. Try not to do that today.