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Wicked building to have in a city with frequent earthquakes

Posted by Madbot on Apr 12, 2011 in 2011 Japan Earthquake Tsunami Nuclear Diary, Japan

Madbot says:

The quakes and aftershocks are back! Saw this on TV when they’re showing the quake at this city in Ibraki, near Tokyo. This is not a building I want to be near during an earthquake..

20110412-120506.jpg

 
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The tsunami wave that hit Fukushima nuclear reactors

Posted by Madbot on Apr 10, 2011 in 2011 Japan Earthquake Tsunami Nuclear Diary, Japan

That was one mighty high wave.

20110410-090055.jpg

 
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After shock – explosion at Sendai substation and blackout

Posted by Madbot on Apr 10, 2011 in 2011 Japan Earthquake Tsunami Nuclear Diary, Funny videos, Japan

Madbot says:

Happened a few days ago (Apr 7). The shaking went on for some 20 seconds or longer. Reminded us of the big one but thankfully not as violent, and not as long. Interesting footage captured by the NHK TV camera at Sendai showing flashes of light in the distance and then the city lights fade out from an apparent power outage.

Boom!

 
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3 weeks after the M9 earthquake – riding through the streets of Tokyo

Posted by Madbot on Apr 1, 2011 in 2011 Japan Earthquake Tsunami Nuclear Diary, Japan

Madbot says:

With all the concerns from family and friends outside of Japan, I wanted to make a little video to show that Tokyo is fine.

Here is my joyride to the office taken yesterday morning.

There are still aftershocks (a couple of decent ones just this very evening), lots of victim who lost families and everything they owned, nuclear situation remains extremely serious. But for now, Tokyo is doing fine and everyone is working hard to restore life and help those up north.

 
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Mar 29 – Numb, and back at the local with my crownie

Posted by Madbot on Mar 29, 2011 in 2011 Japan Earthquake Tsunami Nuclear Diary, Japan

Catch up blog 22,

  • Appreciating my home more than ever.
  • Aftershocks continue but not as bad as last week.
  • Back at the office.
  • Nuclear situation seems worse.
  • Radiation in Tokyo is lower than last week.
  • Water is now safe to drink. No water in any vending machines, and mineral water is rationed at supermarkets.
  • Some vegetables are confirmed to have too much radiation. Bound be more.
  • I feel more like a frog in a slowly boiling pot.
  • New dramas at Fukushima EVERYDAY.
  • Ignorance sets in with people, clients and generally everyone except those affected.
  • The word to describe the situation is: “NUMB“.
  • Back at the local. I have my crownie.

     
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    “Alerts to Terror Threats in 2011 Europe,” by John Cleese

    20110328-064649.jpg

    After all the serious news related to the disasters in Japan, here’s something that gave me a good laugh. From master John Cleese.

    The English are feeling the pinch in relation to recent terrorist threats and have therefore raised their security level from “Miffed” to “Peeved.” Soon, though, security levels may be raised yet again to “Irritated” or even “A Bit Cross.” The English have not been “A Bit Cross” since the blitz in 1940 when tea supplies nearly ran out. Terrorists have been re-categorized from “Tiresome” to “A Bloody Nuisance.” The last time the British issued a “Bloody Nuisance” warning level was in 1588, when threatened by the Spanish Armada.

    The Scots have raised their threat level from “Pissed Off” to “Let’s Get the Bastards.” They don’t have any other levels. This is the reason they have been used on the front line of the British army for the last 300 years.

    The French Government announced yesterday that it has raised its terror alert level from “Run” to “Hide.” The only two higher levels in France are “Collaborate” and “Surrender.” The rise was precipitated by a recent fire that destroyed France’s white flag factory, effectively paralyzing the country’s military capability.

    The Italians have increased the alert level from “Shout Loudly and Excitedly” to “Elaborate Military Posturing.” Two more levels remain: “Ineffective Combat Operations” and “Change Sides.” The Germans have increased their alert state from “Disdainful Arrogance” to “Dress in Uniform and Sing Marching Songs.” They also have two higher levels: “Invade a Neighbor” and “Lose.”

    Belgians, on the other hand, are all on holiday as usual; the only threat they are worried about is NATO pulling out of Brussels.

    The Spanish are all excited to see their new submarines ready to deploy. These beautifully designed subs have glass bottoms so the new Spanish navy can get a really good look at the old Spanish navy.

    The Australians, meanwhile, have raised their security level from “No worries” to “She’ll be Alright, Mate.” Two more escalation levels remain: “Crikey! I think we’ll need to cancel the barbie this weekend!” and “The barbie is canceled.” So far no situation has ever warranted use of the final escalation level.

    — John Cleese – British writer, actor and tall person

     
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    Mar 26 – time for home

    Posted by Madbot on Mar 26, 2011 in 2011 Japan Earthquake Tsunami Nuclear Diary, Japan

    Catch up blog 21,

    After some 8 days in Osaka, it’s time to head home.

    Wifey and I are both tired and getting very home sick. The nuclear situation has NOT gotten better and probably got worse. Travel warning from Australian embassy continues to be at “Do Not Travel” – unless for essential reasons.

    I guess work and home can be considered essential. Have to be at the office on Sunday, so have to go home. We may be very worried about what’s happening at Fukushima, but we miss our homes even more. Can’t bear to think what the people who lost their loved ones and home must feel right now.

    Found a spanish restaurant in Osaka on Thursday night and was again pleasantly surprised. Polished off another bottle of wine. Apparently water is not getting quite scarce in Tokyo. Water vs Wine – guess I will drink them both.

    Went back to the “deep-fried” restaurant on Friday evening to enjoy our last night in Osaka. Took note of the little fish the chef behind the bar took out from the tank at the entrance, places a stick through the fish, (step x), (step y), and places the deep fried fish on my plate.


    Thank you little fish. I am very grateful.

    Polished off another beer and 2 or 3 refills of sake.

     
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    Mar 23 – Global Hawk

    Posted by Madbot on Mar 23, 2011 in 2011 Japan Earthquake Tsunami Nuclear Diary, Japan

    Catch up blog 20,

    Have been wondering with the fellas at work on why Fukushima is not already surrounded by drones, robots and satellites to check the situation out and not leave us in the dark. Apparently some have been visiting..!!

    There are debates on when the global hawk arrived. Some said the long reach drone was flying as early as Mar 12, the day after the quake that put the nuclear reactors in trouble. Some say as late as Mar 16 or later. Who knows? Who cares? Please just solve the situation and let everyone get on with the rescue and recovery.

    There are reports today that radiation was found in Tokyo water and the level is too high and is considered dangerous for babies. FFS, what will it take to get the situation under control..? Constantly scanning all news sources for any signs of good news – sure is scarce.

     
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    Mar 22 – Osaka Castle

    Posted by Madbot on Mar 22, 2011 in 2011 Japan Earthquake Tsunami Nuclear Diary, Japan

    Catch up blog 19,

    Finally, first day where we don’t have to unpack and pack. First 24 hours where we don’t have to rush out and plant ourselves at the next hotel. After finishing the work meeting Skype call in the morning and catch up on emails, we headed out to Osaka castle in the afternoon to see what’s out there in this large Japanese city called Osaka.

    It’s a good looking castle – although the inside has been ‘modernized’ into a museum of sorts. Learned lots about the history of the castle and the different generations of characters involved in building the castle. Definitely worth the visit if you’re at Osaka.

    Started to rain in the afternoon. Apparently it was also raining in the afternoon – bringing extra fear of radiation rain.

    Headed back to the hotel room to catch up on emails. Wifey seems to have a never-ending strings of emails that she must reply and handle. I settled down to watch South Park – the whole season 14. Went to a wine restaurant a few blocks away from the hotel and polished off a bottle of wine. Hmmm… seems I’ve been drinking a bottle every night.

     
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    Mar 21 – On the move

    Posted by Madbot on Mar 21, 2011 in 2011 Japan Earthquake Tsunami Nuclear Diary, Japan

    Catch up blog 18,

    We continue to watch development of the nuclear situation on the news, and change hotels.

    Osaka sunset.

    5th day in Osaka and we’ve stayed at 4 different rooms in 3 hotels so far. In all hotels, except the Ritz, there have been posters saying that the hotel Internet connection are affected by the recent disasters. Not in the sense that any undersea cable were disconnected, but that all hotels are so packed with travelers (mainly from Tokyo) that their infrastructure cannot handle the volume.

    Sure enough, the Internet connection has been patchy. My laptop got setup and turned into the wifi access point. Plugged into the hotel LAN port and shares its Internet connection with wifey’s laptop, my iPhone and iPad. Wifey doesn’t care for wifi connection on her iPhone.

    Latest development? Australian embassy flagged Tokyo as “Do not travel”. The department of Foreign affairs also rang my sister in Sydney asking if she has heard from us and what our plans are in terms of leaving Tokyo. For a while my sister was confused and thought they were “A current affairs” department. Funny, yes but not too far fetched. Apparently the A Current Affairs “journalist” was at Narita airport shadowing the lines of foreigners waiting for a flight out of Tokyo for some exciting stories of fear and sensation from the nuclear situation.

    Adding on top, a mail from the department of foreign affairs also sent me an email directly:

    > From: DFAT_Crisis_Centre@dfat.gov.au
    > Date: March 20, 2011 6:20:14 PM GMT+09:00
    > Subject: Updated Travel Advice: JAPAN [SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]
    > Reply-To: centre.conops@dfat.gov.au
    >
    >
    > The travel advice for Japan has been reviewed and reissued.
    >
    > It contains new information under Health Issues (advice on sheltering and
    > decontamination provided by the Department of Health and Ageing and advice
    > on food and water safety provided by Food Standards Australia New Zealand).
    > It also contains latest advice from the Australian Radiation Protection and
    > Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) on new International Atomic Energy Agency’s
    > International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale (INES) rating and
    > changed weather conditions. A link to the ARPANSA website is also contained
    > in the lastest advice.
    >
    > The level of the advice for northern Honshu (including Tokyo and
    > surrounding districts) remains at Do not travelh. The overall level of the
    > advice for Japan remains at Exercise a high degree of caution.
    >
    > http://www.smartraveller.gov.au
    >
    > Please refer to the website for the most up-to-date issue of the travel
    > advice.
    >
    > DFAT Crisis Centre
    > Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

    After hearing all the news, plus more family members contact to threaten worse, we opted to stay in Osaka for the week. Wifey believes she can continue to “work” from remote while I explained to the bosses and the team the situation.

    Luckily, wifey was able to find a business hotel down the road where we can stay until Saturday.

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