Today, we think of Japan


Wednesday 11 March, 2015 by Uncle Spike


It’s been four years since the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami on March 11, 2011 at 2:46pm local time. Yesterday I read a first hand account which thankfully did not end in personal tragedy, but really helped me as an outsider to try and understand the enormity of the disaster.

Like many similar disasters, we only heard the headlines and casualty figures through international media, and I remember the constant updates about the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant, but what about normal people who were going about their everyday lives?

Below is a short extract from a first hand account by Celia, a fellow blogger who lives and works in Japan. I urge you to spare the time to read her post.


Quake: Living with Hope

“Just as I stood up, though, Mother Nature decided she wasn’t done yet. The tremors returned, stronger and more vicious. I was forced to the ground and reached back for the pole. The violence of the quake was terrifying. I could only see a few people, and they were now screaming, sobbing, wide-eyed in panic, or clutching onto someone or something. Seeing this reaction by the locals, I realised this was no ordinary quake….”

By fellow blogger, Celia In Tokyo


Here in Türkiye we live our lives in the certain knowledge that quakes are part and parcel of our lives, and that, hopefully, the regular tremors we have are releasing sufficient pressure on the major faults to stave off another ‘big one’, such as the 1999 quake which killed 17000.

Below is the Global Seismic Hazard Assessment map – you can spot Türkiye – we are part of that red blob at the centre of the image.

Kids at school are drilled all the time on what to do, but I know we ourselves could be much better prepared. Thanks Celia, you have focussed my mind on something I have talked about, but seriously need to do – the Evac Bag.


9 thoughts on “Today, we think of Japan

  1. Thanks for posting this. I share on Twitter and Facebook, and I don’t even like “Faceburger.” But I do love Japan and I live in California, grew up here and been in some 7 rated shakers. The thing is that, although the advice is to get outside. We’d never make it out in time. So the next best thing is to lie beside a large object like a bed, forming an air pocket and protecting you head as things fall.


  2. Thanks for sharing Celia’s post, Spike. It’s a harrowing tale and, as I commented to Celia, one that reminds us that the aftermath continues long after the reporters and cameras are gone and the numbers tallied.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. dayphoto says:

    Quakes are so terrifying and horrific. THis is an excellent post.

    Linda ★★


  4. joannesisco says:

    Thanks for sharing this Spike.

    Although we are not in an earthquake zone, it is important for everyone everywhere to be prepared for an emergency with sufficient water, food, candles, etc for several days. My father taught me to rarely let the gas tank in my car get below half full.

    Celia’s message re-enforced the importance of all these good practices.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. stemgir1 says:

    Thanks for sharing this moving experience.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Celia says:

    Thank you, Spike. It means so much that you would that the time to reblog this story.
    I just moved houses recently, and only yesterday printed off the emergency refuge map for my new local area – open, flat ground is good for earthquake evacuations and high areas are good for tsunami warnings! That will be going in the top of the evac pack!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Thank you, Uncle Spike, for this post in honor of Japan. Celia’s post made me shiver. Like Japan and Turkey California is living with the knowledge that earthquakes are part of the nature of the state. Kids have regular drills at school. I arrived there a few months after the last important one in 1989. But the tsunami of 2011 was a tragedy that is still part of many Japanese’s lives. The March issue of Harper’s magazine ran an extraordinary report with photos about the consequences for the people who lived near the nuclear plants. Thank you again.

    Liked by 1 person

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