Update on life since the March 11 earthquake

April 6, 2011 at 11:51 am Leave a comment

I apologize for my sudden absence, but as I’m sure you all know, the worst earthquake in Japanese history occurred on March 11th, and, well, I live in Japan. Although the city my husband and I live in is far enough inland that we weren’t hit by a tsunami, we live far enough North that the earthquake was still a terrifying experience, and things have been pretty chaotic since then.

Immediately after the earthquake occurred, all the cell phone lines became jammed, and no one could use their cell phones. Because of this, my husband and I both had a nerve-wracking three hours or so before we were able to find each other (yes, it was a dramatic reunion when we finally did find each other).

In our apartment, due to numerous broken dishes and cookware, the floor was covered with broken glass. Things fell off cabinets, shelves, and just fell over, so it was pretty chaotic when we were finally able to return to our apartment, but we were just grateful that our building was still in one piece.

Since the earthquake, in our city, and most of the cities in the Kanto area, we’ve experienced lack of water, gas, and power; gasoline, food, and water shortages; fears and misinformation about radiation and the situation in Fukushima; and continuous after-shocks that, even now, are still occurring.

All of this is nothing compared to the tragedy and horror the people up north have been facing in areas like Miyagi, Iwate, and Sendai. My husband and I are extremely blessed that we still have a home, and more importantly, we still have each other.

A week after the earth quake occurred, my husband and I decided to fly back to the U.S. for a couple weeks until things calmed down in Japan a little, and because I was receiving increasingly frantic text messages from my parents, who were convinced that Japan was either going to blow-up or sink into the ocean at any given moment (thank you foreign media).

Although no airport staff were armed with Geiger counters upon our arrival at the DFW airport, we did end up being interviewed by a local news station while waiting for my parents to come pick us up.

We had a fairly relaxing two weeks in the U.S. Both of my brothers and my sister-in-law were able to visit for a few days, and we were able to celebrate my husband’s birthday while we were there (I made homemade enchiladas for dinner at his request). We continued to closely monitored the situation in Japan, however, and kept in touch with my husband’s family in Japan throughout our stay.

By the time our two week stay was up, my husband needed to get back to work, and we decided that things had calmed down enough in our city that we could return, so we flew back to Japan last Saturday.

Things do seem more normal now here in our city.  There don’t seem to be anymore gasoline shortages, and Ibaraki prefecture, where we live, has been excluded from the rolling blackouts, so we all have electricity (although everyone is being strongly encouraged to conserve as much electricity as possible). Also, except for a few random things and bottled water, grocery stores seem fairly well stocked now, and people are no longer panic buying. Kids are in school, people are at work, and families are playing in the park. Life goes on. We’re still having some after shocks, but they generally much weaker and less frequent than they were.

Up north, of course, the situation is still terrible, and so many people are working so hard around the clock to help the people there, not to mention all the people at the nuclear power plant in Fukushima who are working around the clock to try and stabilize the situation there. Their hard work is truly inspiring and greatly appreciated, and my heart goes out to them all, and to all the victims of the earthquake and tsunami.

I’ll begin updating with actual food/recipe posts again starting tomorrow, so check back soon!


Entry filed under: Japan, Life. Tags: , , , , .

Of Science and Sourdough (Sourdough Blueberry Muffins) Sweet & Sour Chicken and Veggie Stir-Fry

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About Me

My name is Rachel. I'm a small-town girl born and raised in Oklahoma, currently living in Japan, who likes cooking, baking, reading, working out, and traveling. Join me in my culinary adventures, my domestic doings, and the story of my life, one day at a time.

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