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March 13, 2011
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Tokyo minute: March 14th, White Day

Today is March 14th, as I mentioned in this post here Japan celebrates two separate events for Valentine’s day. February 14th as described in this post….and March 14th when the men that received gifts on Valentines would reciprocate to the women. With the Sendai earthquake of March 11th the entire country is still in mourning for the thousands of lives that were lost. You can see the extent of the unbelievable damage here I was stuck at Ochanomidzu station in central Tokyo on Friday since 4pm to around 10pm and couldn’t get back to my home in Oomori (about 45 minutes train ride), and couldn’t get a hotel either. My cellphone battery went dead and I had left my charger at home. After borrowing one from a helpful stranger phone I managed to get hold of a friend of mine. She had dumped her car somewhere along the road so she couldn’t pick me up, instead we agreed we would walk and meet half way and then go to her house. I walked for 45 minutes and met her halfway and went to her house where I spent the night.

On Saturday some train lines started working and I finally made it home after a 3 hour wait and train ride. Back home there wasn’t much damage since most of my stuff had actually been picked up by a courier that morning for transport to London where I am moving. I managed to buy dry food and water but as of now, the stores are empty there has been no gas since Friday. We have electricity but as of today there will be rolling power cuts 3 hrs at a time. But my story is nothing compared to the people that were in direct line of the earthquake and resulting tsunami. The situation is as bad as you are seeing on TV and is still very unstable as we are experiencing 3/4 aftershocks every hour (more than 250 since Friday according to the news).

Our hearts go out to all the people that have lost family and friends in the disaster. If anyone outside Japan is looking for family or friends feel free to message me and I will try and help in any way. The phones are working on and off so if you are not able to get through it’s probably just because the lines are down…not because something has happened to your family. Email is the best way to communicate right now.

posted by
3/13/11

Hi Dana, I am so sorry for what is happening in Japan. Everyone is in a state of shock and talking about it here, but we can not imagine how challenging it must be to be living this tragedy. I lived in Yokohama for a year when I was 21 so I need to email the families that hosted me and the friends I had to know if they are alright. I hope you are OK despite the chaos; you are in our thoughts!


posted by
3/13/11

Thanks you so much Ritournelle, if you need any help getting touch with them, just tell me or message me and i will do whatever i can. I live near Yokohama, but there are no trains to Yokohama right now. There is a new announcement that the power cuts have been suspended so hopefully the train services will be restored later this evening..


posted by
3/13/11

Thanks Dana. I just emailed the people I knew and I hope they'll answer eventually... The only person I can't reach is a close friend I had and lost touch with. None of her email adresses work anymore. She has a very common name (Hiroko Kobayashi) so I highly doubt I'll ever find her :( Now I really blame myself for loosing touch with her.


posted by
3/14/11

Dana this must be like living a nightmare. I had no idea there were so many aftershocks, it must be horrible to live on edge that like. It will be a long road to recovery judging by the photos you sent on Twitter this morning. Your blogging friends were relieved that you were safe and sound. Keep us up to date.
Cupcake
xo


posted by
3/14/11

Dana, I will never be able to find the words to adequately express how sad and incredibly sorry I feel for the situation in Japan - but I am glad to hear that you are safe. I can't imagine having the bravery you are now showing and really do think that you are amazing.

You, and the people of Japan, are very much in my thoughts and prayers.

Love,
Sarah x


3/14/11

oh no..Dana, I supposed to remember you are in Tokyo! G** I am sorry to hear that=(..I am glad you are safe and not affected by the damages....this post has the most conincidental happenings as well as the White Day that I remember telling my husband of Valentine tradition in Tokyo....and your moving is so timely that you had packed your things...i bet it is also exciting thinking of London..I wish I know how it feels like emotionally..was it like the end of the world? was it like a war?...bec I dreamed about me inside a glass rolled by tsunami 2 days before it happened in Japan, I was w my husband and the baby in the glass-it was all I want --to be with them....i also felt terrified.


3/14/11

Oh yes, what a disaster in Japan! I've been seeing it all on the news. It's hard to relate though, because nothing like that ever happens over here, I have no loved ones in that area, and in the end, I'm seeing it all from a TV screen. But my best wishes still go out to everyone affected, and am relieved that you are fine. What a coincidence that you are moving...


posted by Lee Oliveira
3/15/11

It is so sad lately turning the TV on or reading the latest news over the net.
I feel the pain of the people of Japan and other naticionality that leaves there
They need need our help and prays.
Lee x


3/15/11

Oh, Dana. This is all so very sad and I'm so relieved that you're safe. You were the first one I thought of when I heard of the tragedy. More and more images are being released daily here on tv of the horror that happened in Japan. I am wondering how close you were to moving. Be safe, my friend.


posted by
3/16/11

thank you so much for the kind messages. Things are slowly getting back to "normal", at least today things were fairly OK. As much as we want to keep up with the news it is depressing to watch the news. The recovery process is slowly starting but it is a mountain to climb back to the way things were...


posted by
3/17/11

I somehow missed this post.

I am so happy to hear that you're safe. I have only watched about 2 minutes of the news - I cannot handle it. Having a connection with Japan makes me feel as though this has happened to my own country. When I woke up to the news, I read that 62 people had died. As the hours and now days have gone on, we're into more than 10,000 dead/missing. It is good that you and your friend had each other 's support.

I pray for the safe recovery of Japan and it's people. That's all one can hope for.

x


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