Okay... Along a completely different line.
Friends and family have offered lodging in the States. People outside of Japan offer advice to get out as fast as we can. And I would say that if I was a tourist here, or on a temporary assignment that that would probably be the best thing to do all around. Get to safer ground... one less person in the country is one less person the government has to worry about. Even Takumi wistfully wishes we would come to the States, "on a visit". But the slogan of Medicine without Borders rings in my ears. Just because I have American citizenship and American contacts does not mean I should leave "my" country of 30+ years for my own safety. That sounds pretty high falutin' but I married Tetsu and this country for better or for worse and I guess this is part of the worse right now.
And I know Tetsu would NEVER leave. He doesn't like American lifestyle (he loves America, he just can't live there for more than a week. Truly!) He is one of those people who would be the last to go down with a ship. As a college student he said he just decided NEVER to sit down on a crowded train. Instead of trying to decide whether to give up his seat to someone who might be more in need it was easier to just not claim it from the beginning.
So, we are sticking it out. But with all that said, I am SO happy that Takumi and Leiya are not in Japan right now. Leiya was feeling guilty because her friend's father asked if she wanted to go back to Japan and be with us, and she said,
"Um... No. I don't like earthquakes..."
and then she felt like she was being cold-hearted and selfish. My comment was,
"Don't even THINK about coming back to Japan right now. We have enough problems without worrying about you too!"
But that comment alone is very self-centered. One of Mrs. Furui's sons is in Sendai treating people in a hospital amidst the chaos of the system breakdowns and city rubble. I had to apologize to Mrs. Furui when I unthinkingly mentioned that I was glad my kids weren't anywhere nearby.
******I talked to my mother this morning for the first time since the earthquake. I wasn't even sure she knew about the world situation...
"Didn't Marcy say that you'd had a big earthquake? Where were you?"
"In a rock quarry."
"Why would you go in a rock quarry during an earthquake?"
So she knows but maybe doesn't have such great understanding of the immensity of the problem. She thought it highly humorous that I refer to my situation as "luxury camping". It was good to hear my mom and Marcy laughing at the other end of the phone line! Had me in stitches too!
I'm making string blocks today. As usual I've got my measurements off... Some things never change.