After the March 11th earthquake


Let us begin Brewster  podcast.   How are you?  This is Yuichiro. And today’s commentator is Motoki Sakurai.

Hi, this is Motoki.

Motoki, What kind of topic have you chosen this week?

Well. it has been about three months since the march 11th earthquake occurred. Some reconstructing programs have already started. Also a lot of volunteer workers have been to Tohoku to help Tohoku people. Even now we need more effort. There are our Japanese people’s thoughts. However, how about other countries? I would like to know ideas what people from abroad think of.

Tanks sir. So today’s topic is about The March 11th earthquake. Not only Japanese people have experienced such a huge disaster. Then let us consider what the people from overseas feel. We have interviewed people who come from out of Japan and we could get other points of view.

First, Motoki who did you asked?

I asked a guy whose name is David.

O.K. Let’s get start it.

M: Hi, I’m going to ask you about the earthquake on March 11th.

Have you ever experienced disaster like earthquake on March 11th?

D: No, not at all. life experience some very strong hurricanes and big snow               storms but nothing, nothing the stronger and powerful as March 11th                   earthquake.

M: What was your reaction to March 11th?

D: When I was at home in my recording studio, and my initial felling like, is           my house gonna be OK?? And I just went outside calmly and chatted with           the neighbors. We all just stood around waiting for the end.

M: Do your family, for example your parents, brothers or cousins live in                    Japan?

D: No, I don’t have any family in Japan.

M: Where do they live, and could you contact them soon after the earthquake?

D: Most of my friends and family live back in east coast Canada and once                 internet came back on a few hours later I was able to contact everybody               through facebook or skype, so I had no problem to contact with people.

M: This is the last question. What did you think about the reaction of the                    Japanese people around you at the moment and after the earthquake?

D: At the moment of the earthquake, I went outside, and my neighbors were             outside, everybody was, you know, laughing, and kind of like what this is a       big earthquake. But we all kind of knew that somewhere something bad               happened, but we didn’t know what until a few hours later when we can             watch TV. And also everyone because power ____ everybody helped each         other, we had radio on, we shared information. After that, response to the         actual disaster area was, you know, it was overwhelming just to watch on           TV and _______. Generally, Japanese people really help and take care of         each other I think, you know, did the best, stay calm, you know, so quite             good I think. But, a mixture of emotions most like what people are really             hanging on there and fighting hard and  well a lot of people died, you                 know so, both of good and bad.  It’s good? Positive feeling about Japanese         people in general.

Hmm.. That was my interview, so Yuichiro how about you? Who did you ask?

I’ve asked Peter who works at ELP.

O.K. Let’s listen to it.

Y: Hi. Thank you for coming.

P: Sure.

Y: First of all, I would like to know about you.

P: O.K.

Y: So, May I have your name?

P: My name is Peter.

Y: And, Where are you from?

P: I’m from the west coast of the United States.

Y: Ah, so how long have you been in Japan?

P: I’ve been in Japan since 1985, so 26 years now.

Y: So long!

P: Yes.

Y: What’s your job?

P: I’m a teacher here in ELP.

Y: Today I would like to interview about the March 11th earthquake.

So what did you think of the reaction of Japanese people around you at the moment of the earthquake or after two weeks or three weeks?

P: Hmm.. At the moment of the earthquake, everybody in the office where I was, we got under desks with emergency helmets on.

And we waited until the shaking head stopped at least calm down. A bad point I realized one of the other people in the office was crying under the desk which surprised me because this person is a very, very capable, organized person and I didn’t expect this person for the part and started crying.

We all out then to Keyakinohiroba. Everybody came out from ‘Meimei-kan’ from ‘Taihei-kan’ from ‘Sutei-kan’ into the square. And it was all very well organized. They immediately to the people who are in charge in the situation, they had lists of who should be… Lists of all different offices, they had bullhorns so that everybody could hear them. They started doing a roll call “Okay, is everybody from Kokusaikohryu-center here?” AndKokusaikohryu-center was same somebody all just say “Yes, we are all here”. And they would check the part them off on a list. They were very well organized, and they had a radio, and we were listening to the news, the reports about where the earthquake had been. And they held the radio up to the bullhorn, mega horn, so the record, here are important parts “get away from the coast. There’s a danger of large Tsunami”. I was quite impressed with the level of organization.

Y: I thought Japanese politics don’t open their information, even we Japanese can’t judge what is right and what is wrong. So it was umm…

P: Well, that’s probably true. On the other hand, if this had been many other countries, China for example, I mean you never gonna get accurate free information in out of the government of China. I think that the level of information offered by the Japanese government and the reliability about the information was much better than you would hear many countries.

Y: Uh.. I see.

P: Even if there are also countries where the information is more reliable and comes more freely, Japan is not at the bottom of the list of the comes to getting information of. Not the best but not the worst either.

Y: Yah, I see. My question is that’s all. Thank you for answering my interview.

P: O.K.

Y: Thank you.

P: You are quite welcome.

Uh.. Well, this is my interview. And Motoki, after the interview what do you think about it?

The guy who I interviewed, his name is David, he has been raised in where is received natural disaster, and he has experienced some like strong hurricanes but the March 11th earthquake was shocking for him.

Above all, Good to know that Japanese people’s reactions from his eyes.

Because, that is different that how Japanese people are like from people from overseas.

That’s right! In my opinion, by the time I interviewed, I had thought that other countries people had had some frustrations for Japanese medias and government.This is because they do not tell us exact information. However, after the interview,  my thoughts has been changed.

I suppose that our situation is much better than other countries about information. We can get a lot of information and have chance to judge true or false. We need to have good eyes to have right judgement, I guess.

Thank you for listening to Brewster podcast. See you then!

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