March 11, 2011 ~ Friday
I started my day as usual: waked up early in the morning, cooked breakfast and made bentou for my husband and went to my morning duty for a 'hata toban'. I went out with a yellow flag as a cross guard and spent 30 to 40 minutes at the cross walk until 15 to 30 children leave the neighborhood for school. Then did my laundry after, cleaned the house and dropped Haruka to school before 9 am. Hours later, wrote an entry to my Friday favourite meme and bloghopped for awhile. It is a routine for me to do bloghopping when the kids are at school, it's one of my 'Me time'.
Picked up Haruka before 2:00 PM at school and went home early without letting her play after school coz my kids will be picked up by their Grandfather for a sleepover at their home in Namie for the weekend. 35 minutes later, Wakaba came with her project from school and as we're gladly looking at her drawings, we could feel the shaking in our apartment and thought that it was just the usual short earthquakes but it wasn't..the shaking was so violent and long. Though we have experienced an earthquake simulation before during an event, I have never experienced a strong earthquake before here in Japan and panicked for 'twas real! It felt like a lifetime to me. I guess Japanese are well trained on what to do when earthquake strikes coz after I shouted " jishin! " or the earthquake, Wakaba and Haruka went under the table and both of them seemed so calm unlike me. It felt to me like our apartment was on a railway car that was being pushed back and forth on it's rails. It was scary, terribly scary! The moving was violent, shaking and the things were falling all over and was afraid that our HDTV would tip over so I hold it but 'twas rocking from side to side and I'm also losing my balance!
The earthquake was long, felt danger inside the apartment and called my kids to run outside, Wakaba runs first, then me holding the hands of Haruka. Friends in the neighborhood were also outside and couldn't help but worry constantly. I didn't even noticed that we're on our barefoot until a friend told us so. Minutes later my husband came, still with his white uniform on ( he's a radialogist ) and was relieved after seeing us outside. He went up to the apartment to get some blankets, some food and checked if we have running water but there was none and hurriedly went to the nearest conveniece store to buy some food and bottled water to drink. My husband came back with a few snacks in hand--he said that the convenience store were all cleared of all food. We don't have power, gas and communications were knocked out! We were given sandwiches and bread to eat for the night and gave them our bananas in return. Blessings! Don't know why but tears came falling down...Things aren't looking so good but hopefully something will work out for us...with God's help.
We decided to spend the night inside the car although the kids would feel uncomfortable but being inside the car is safer rather than spending a night inside the apartment which is on a second floor. Every once in a while, an aftershock would strike and it really scares the hell out of me, we could feel the ground shaking. Me and my husband watched the news inside the car and was shocked! Little did I know that a tsunami washed away Tohoku! Sendai is a favorite place of ours, Namie Machi is our second home, Onahama Machi is 10 km away from us. God, please help Tohoku!
Next day, we checked inside our apartment and this is what we saw....Our wooden clothes cabinet, toy storage have fallen down Our desktop has moved backward, fallen down Dishes rattled We're still getting constant tremors inside our apartment that lead us to run outside every once in a while. All forms of communications were knocked out Watching the news over the navigation screen Wakaba and Haruka sleeping inside the car
March 12, 2011 ~ Saturday
We had our gas and electricity back and immediately cooked rice then made onigiri ( rice balls ) for breakfast and cooked curry for large batches that will fill our stomach for a couple of days. We've got no running water but luckily, I didn't throw the water that was being used during our ofuro( bath tub)~ it helped us a lot on flushing our toilet. What we didn't have running water and a kerosene to fill our heater but we have our blanket to warmth us. My husband went to collect water at a water station/delivery services run by the local government. He brought with him some jars and lined up for 4 hours to get water.
Little did I know 'bout the nuclear accident at Fukushima Nuclear Plant~ I never thought that three disasters could happen at the same time in one country... The government is asking the people to leave for those who are living 20 km( danger zone) near the plant. Us, ( living 40 km) however instructed to stay indoors. My SIL's house is 15 km and my PIL's house is 20 km from the plant. Worried, really worried about them but we can't use any source of communication. No phone, no internet!
March 13, 2011 ~ Sunday~
My Mama tomo ( Japanese friend mum) came with a plastic bag that's full of cup soup, instant soup, cup ramen and tuna can. What a blessing! She asked me if there's something anything else we need~ I feel so blessed with generous friends!
Another blessing! Our neighbor brought us some snacks for the kids, we gave them our few bottled water in return. I'm so blessed to be here~ friends, residents help each other in time of need. I'm so grateful!
March 14, 2011 ~ Monday~I went early to get some water~ good thing that the water station is giving water 24 hours, there's only a few people getting water, no loong lines and went smoothly and filled up my jar with water and when I was on my way to get home, saw cars lined up through the gasoline station. Little did I know that some drivers waited all day for just a few litres of gasoline.
Went to the nearest supermarket to buy drinking water~ stores forbid customers to buy one box (12pcs, 1000ml) of bottled water per person and luckily bought for us. Even at supermarkets were cleared of all food~ I was afraid that supplies would soon dry up.
Called to my Mom in the Philippines at the supermarket's phone box~ she cried upon hearing my voice, I wanted to convey to her that we're all safe and sound but she can't help but get worried most especially about the radiation threat. I told her we've got enough gasoline just in case the government warn us to evacuate the area...
March 15, 2011~ Tuesday
My husband went out to look for food but to his dismay, all the stores were all closed. I went out to check for other stores and looked around. The surroundings were different and it looks like a ghost town--no people, no nothing!
to be continued....
Here's some things that you should have on hand just in case there is an earthquake. These includes foods, waters, flashlights and radio with batteries, wet tissues, plastic/food wrap or a cling wrap and aluminum foil. There is, of course, no guarantee that nothing will happened, but try to be prepared.
An idea to save water~ cover plates with wraps before putting the food on then peel the wrap off and disgard it after eating to save much water. Believe me, food wraps helps a lot! Quakes can be very terrifying, but we have to be prepared for them. Let’s do the best we can.
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