The people of Japan are in our thoughts and prayers following the earthquake. The world is getting smaller - I know six people living in Japan. The following is an email from my cousin in Tokyo.
Below is the letter I've been sending out to people. Since I wrote this letter, the focus has changed from the earthquake to the Fukushima nuclear reactors. Three of the 6 reactors are in danger of meltdown. I've been checking the wind patterns and so far wind is blowing away from Tokyo.
I went out shopping with my son and the shelves are becoming bare in all supermarkets and convenience stores. Milk, bread, rice, eggs - all gone.
We decided to call off school for Monday while we assess the situation. The German embassy has already sent it's people home (so I've heard from a couple of sources at school). It makes you wonder if the diplomats know something that we don't.
(Latest news - They've called off school for the rest of the month so we decided to visit California. Our son already had a ticket from a concert tour that was cancelled and we found a couple more tickets at a good price.
We're all OK.
Here's some pictures of the school.
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It hit during last period and we reacted just like we do during our earthquake drills. Everybody was OK, although we had several crying girls. It doesn't really shake during our drills.
Tokyo is OK. Too far from the epicenter to sustain terrible damage. I've experienced a lot of earthquakes and this was by far the biggest one I've ever felt. It seemed to last for more than a minute. I was in class and we all dove under the tables and the longer it shook the more we scrunched up under the table. Then we got an announcement to evacuate to the tennis courts. After about 30 minutes a couple of teachers started leading their classes back in and then we had a big aftershock. The teachers made an immediate U-turn and after that we stayed on the tennis courts and waited for parents to come and pick up their kids. Some couldn't make it to school. Phones were out, expressways were closed and trains were shut down. So I stayed and kept updating the website giving school bus information so parents could see when the buses left the school.
At home a lot of my DVD's fell off the shelves.
2 school boys and 3 schools girls stayed overnight with us because they couldn't get home. The trains had all stopped.