I'm a writer. But I have no words for the past week.
Now it is Sunday morning. A 3-day holiday weekend because of the Spring Equinox. A beautiful, sunny day in Sapporo.
A cat is on the computer keyboard, Yujiro's gone ski teaching at Kiroro (people are still coming on holiday and having ski lessons?) and Okaasan is dozing under her heated table.
And thousands of people died this week.
Thousands of people became homeless this week.
We are fine. So fine.
We have electricity, gas for the car, toilet rolls, rice.
We have a life: work, the dentist, a coffee shop lunch, a movie...shit...I even finally made it back to the gym on Friday.
Can't think what else to say.
All my energy this week has gone into endless, endless conversations with students about the tragedy: information and images...my sister/in-laws/son's friend/golf buddy/old neighbor/fellow teacher/daughter and friend.....on and on and on.
I've donated money. I've put my classroom on the Couch Surfing "Japan Crises Housing" group, I've tried to connect NPO working people I know, I was interviewed by my old newspaper in England.
How is she coping?
Ok. We think. Yujiro took her out 3 times this week for shopping/lunch trips locally - to get her off the carpet and into clothes and away from the TV.
But I feel that her conversation abilities have slipped back a notch or two.
She just sits and eats at mealtimes, she interacts if we directly address her - but other times she just sits and eats the food in front of her or just watches us moving around the kitchen etc. LIke having a baby in a high chair who can't converse yet, but watches the family moving around.
Like having a black hole across the dinner table....our conversation disappears into it and nothing comes back.
I actually MISS the hamster wheel stories of wartime life/Nishi-sensei and his wonderful health advice/my New Year cooking routines.
Yujiro may have ski work this coming week because it is spring holidays for schools and colleges, so he may be away a lot. I will try to get Okaasan to respond to more direct conversation and bring back the hamster wheel conversations.
And so. And so.
Onwards Japan. Onwards.