Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Tsunami Damage in Rikuzentakata.... 29 months on

After lunch, and a few more rest stops, a lot of people started falling asleep. Soon, we came to the areas which were hardest hit by the tsunami which hit north east Japan in March 2011. I guess I expected to see little signs of it here and there, but what I wasn't prepared for was the fact that there were towns and streets, and then there was nothing. The bus was eerily silent, and it was just heartbreaking to see. In some of the bigger areas, all the debris has been cleared and there are sme temporary building that make up convenience stores or banks or the like. In other areas, you can see that some buildings have mainly been demolished, but there are still some foundations that need to be removed. Its the foundations that are the saddest, because there simply isn't anything there any more. We came to this place called Rikuzentakata, which is a small town where the tsunami hit really bad. They are still trying to demolish buildings there. We helped plant some flowers for a lady who runs a farm there, and then she took us up to the broken sea wall to show us what it used to be like. It used t be a beautiful beach, and now there is nothing. Brittany and I wandered off and did some searching. While the vending machines had been replaced, and there was work going on at the school, there was not much else. Quite a few houses still stood...and they hadn't been cleared out at all. We got quite close to some, and you could see how the roof had caved in and how things had called out and been swept away. There were still children's books inside. It was heartbreaking. And really sad to not know what happened to the people that lived there. I was glad to be able to come and see Tohoku, and help however I could, but I wish the rest of the world could see how far they are from being back to normal. And will they ever be?

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