Monday, March 14, 2011

Still No Reason to Panic

Kudos to Facebook. When I signed on this morning, I was greeted with an alert containing providing information about rolling blackouts and which trains will not be running today.

Our local train line isn't operating at all today except for a few stations closer to Tokyo and Husband only has enough gas in the car for a one-way trip (the base is out of gasoline until more arrives), so he did not go in to the office.

The city of Tokyo itself may be operating normally, no rolling blackouts planned for them. Even so, I'm going to skip the belly dance class I tried out last week, I don't want to take the chance that I can get there but not back home again.

Our city is scheduled to have blackouts between 1:50 and 7:30pm every day between today and the end of April. Today, though, it didn't happen. I guess if neighborhoods cut their own usage sufficiently, they didn't need to shut it all down. And luckily the weather today is gorgeous, so I'm guessing nobody is running the heat or air conditioning.

I took a walking tour of the area, and the residential parts look normal. Cars are on the road, no cracks in the pavement, people out walking around. The stores are a little less normal, but not stripped bare like they are in some places. The recycling was picked up from the curb this morning.

The main grocery store chain near the station is closed, the one next to it was busy, the little one I usually go to had plenty of fruit/condiments/dairy products, some canned food, very little frozen food (I didn't check the meat and fish section), and no bread or milk. The lines were long, of course, so the shelves might not stay half full for long, but I'm hoping logistics return to normal soon if they haven't already. I'm incredibly grateful that we happened to make a large grocery shopping trip the day before the earthquake happened.

One conbini (convenience store) was sold out of pre-made meal boxes and vending-machine-type bread snacks but you could still get instant noodles or any kind of beverage. Another had more empty shelves but still had plenty of bottled drinks.

KFC is closed, Mister Donut only has a small selection of donuts but is open for business, the 100 yen store had its doors halfway open with some sort of notice, but other than "19" I couldn't read what it said.

Unrelated, I saw this sign in front of a construction site (where workers are building a wooden house).

It made me giggle.

I'm keeping an eye on the nuclear plant situation, there's still no reason to put on gas masks. There have been explosions, but the latest word is that there is still no damage to the inner containment chambers.

I'm seeing friends of friends on the internet saying things like, "I heard about that nuclear plant that blew up!" No plant has blown up. At best, that's demonstrating a poor grasp of the actual situation. At worst, it's fear mongering. Stop it.

The world "nuclear" tends to scare people, but I'm not entirely sure what they think is going to or potentially could happen, so I may not be adequately explaining why it won't end up that way.

I urge everyone to listen to different sources of news to get a more complete picture. I've been keeping up with Kyodo News, NHK, BBC, Aljazeera, and CNN.


  1. Peeps
    I'm so glad that you are OK and keeping your spirits high and no unnecssary drama-even though you could certainly be entitled.
    I'll call this evening our time.
    Lovew mom

  2. I disagree...people (especially the US media) are overreacting, and I kind of feel like it's my responsibility to provide realistic information so that isn't perpetuated. I have a small audience, but maybe they can at least be an informed audience.