Things are ok in Tokyo (so far)

It seems that all the foreign TV channels are throwing a fit on how disastrous things are in Japan.  “ZOMG it’s the end of the world and Japan is gonna sink/explode/mutate/get eaten by a relative of Godzilla”.  That is not the case.

Yes, things are bad in Fukushima, with the threat of the radiation from the damaged nuclear plants.  Things are even worse for the many of the prefectures in the Tohoku region, as they continue the search for survivors of the tsunami/earthquake in 0 degree weather, struggling to get food, running water, and basic necessities for the thousands of families that have been displaced in the wake of the disaster.  They are the ones who are feeling the worst of the disaster and all our thoughts, prayers, and support should go towards them.

But the rest of Japan is for the most  part doing just fine.  At worst, all we’ve had to suffer are power blackouts and a shortage of some foods in supermarkets.  Many companies ARE advising people to work from home, but otherwise it’s business as usual.  I’ve been especially fortunate – my family has been visiting (though so far it hasn’t been much of a vacation…) and I’ve been able to stay at their apartment right in the center of Tokyo, which (so far) has escaped the power outages.

I’ve been going in to the office every day (it’s a 10 minute walk away from my parent’s apartment), and though traffic is maybe a little lighter than usual, there are still plenty of people, cars, taxis, and buses out and about.   Train schedules have been disrupted in an effort to decrease power usage, but they are still running – it just means you may be waiting a little longer at the station than normal.

I’m not trying to downplay the gravity of the situation.  Things are not good, and definitely could get worse, but frankly, much of the international news we’ve seen is downright alarmist.  Sensationalist news sells, but does little to reassure friends and families both in Tokyo and overseas.  Fact is, right now, most of us are doing ok.

If you want to help, please donate to the relief efforts that are working closer to the radiation danger zones.  Pray for the families that have lost loved ones.  Pray that the engineers working night and day at the damaged nuclear plants are successful in cooling down the damaged reactors.  Thank you.

Link to Japan Red Cross

Link to Google Crisis Response

If you read Japanese, here is a list of items people need
(you can buy items online and choose to ship to the following address:

2-8-1, Nishi Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku Tokyo 163-8001,
Tokyo Metropolitan Government , Second Government Office bldg.,
1st floor center, North Eastern Pacific Earthquake Emergency Provisions Desk

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