Tuesday, March 15, 2011

 
QUAKE UPDATES Day 4 ++

I have been asked a number of times where folks can donate to help alleviate and overcome this disaster. So much is needed, of so many things. This link is to the best list I've seen of reputable organizations through and to which one can donate.        (big thanks to Kimberlye...)
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No endless "talents" on tv! No ads! No sports! It's real tv, telling real words, with real emotion, about real events! Folks in Tokyo stocking up on radiation masks and bottled water, real food! Gasoline!

A beautiful girl about 12 years old, camera-lit in the dark of the crowded gym, forlorn and tearless, says: "I have no family... I have no home... I have no food... now I know how really happy I used to be..."

Kasumi and family are hanging in there through the aftershocks in their chaotic apartment, thinking the future over... electricity on and off but no water yet, the girls are making the best of it, fortunately K and they went camping last summer for the first time so they knew together what to take fast when the time came in the dark of the shaking apartment: light, water, warm clothing, dense foods... and Kasumi learned from her parents (that's us) to have a good backstock of food in the house... the shops that still exist ration sales in the dark, and are all emptied fast... a friend from a nearby town called Kasumi, desperate for gasoline, asked if there were any open gas stations near her house, but he finally gave up... one station with a line for miles... the owner was tiredly pumping out by hand what gasoline was left... no deliveries coming anytime soon... Tatsuya and so many others called by their companies, told not to come to work until notified... Toyota, Sony, Honda, Nissan, Panasonic also closing down for who knows how long due to absence of infrastructure-- no utilities, ports, roads, rails.. injured/missing/homeless employees... and who will rebuild there? A third reactor has exploded, rolling blackouts everywhere in the north, including Tokyo...

Some foreign journos are puzzled over the protracted absence of looting in Japan following the long quake, like they see everywhere else in the world in the wake of natural devastation-- Chile Haiti etc.... Where are all the looters in Japan they wonder, it’s been three days, where are they... fact is, those poor folks have never lived anywhere as deeply civilized as this country... yes, this level of civility can be achieved, but it may take a few millennia...

They just can't figure it out, though; there must be some reason-- they must want to loot, they must be like us, they'd loot if they could... No, it's because they have respect for one another right from the start, earthquake or no. And as to gangs? One of the most helpful groups at the local level in the ‘95 Kobe quake was the yakuza.

This morning on the way to work I passed several groups of young folks out on the streets with boxes for donations to help the earthquake needy... they were shouting "help the victims" and so forth, the open-topped boxed in their hands were filled to overflowing with bills and coins, and I am certain that not one yen of all that money will be filched, misdirected, or snatched by sly passersby-- it will all go where it is intended to go. That’s why there was so much in those boxes, why folks were so willing to give on the street to strangers: because they trust one another. Anything else would be unthinkable. That characteristic of the Japanese is their biggest asset in overcoming any difficulty, even devastation like this, the images of which at times remind me of the aftermath of Hiroshima. Look what these folks accomplished after that.

Millions homeless, cold night, snow falling up north...

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“Please do not go outside. Please stay indoors. Please close windows and make your homes airtight. Don't turn on ventilators. Please hang your laundry indoors,"

Better go cover my lettuce...




7 comments:

Erica said...

Sending strength and hopes from the Mitten state to you and yours. May you all stay safe and sound. Be well.

Tabor said...

Thanks. I know there are many good organizations, but your suggestion makes me feel a little better. There were stories later about money not getting to Haiti due to delays and mismanagement. I picked the one that claimed it was already there working.

Kalei's Best Friend said...

here in Calif. they are recommending the Red Cross- one in Pasadena (Rose Bowl) the other in Anaheim (Angel's Stadium) I know u r familiar w/both..

annie said...

Thanks for finding and sharing this information.

Elizabeth said...

Thank you for the updates, Robert. Our hearts are with you all.

Maggie said...

Thank you for writing this, and thank you for the suggestions.

~ Sil in Corea said...

My prayers are with you, your family and all the people affected by the triple-disaster.