And another earthquake

I am sitting at my desk in my 2nd floor bedroom.  Hot air is blowing out my Hitachi air-conditioner.  I have just had a cup of tea.  Ten minutes ago the whole guesthouse building began rattling, lasting about a minute. The intensity varied, as if the earth itself was undecided how much it wanted to move.

About 10 seconds into the rattle I slowly walked downstairs to switch on the TV.

The earthquake is not as big as last year, but it has taken over all the TV channels, mainly with tsunami warnings and predictions. The earthquake`s epicentre was around the same place as last March, off Tohoku`s Sanriku coast. Residents there are now evacuating again.  I wonder how many times they have done this since last March.

The magnitude is not as high as last year. I get the impression nothing will come of it.  But my impression is that of a visiting novice – especially worthless when considering that even the impressions of native experts have failed so many times before.

So much has changed since last March yet so much is the same. So much about Japan`s seismic strip remains unknown and unforeseeable.  So many people still live in areas incredibly vulnerable to another big wave, some living on land sunk by last year`s quake.  Temperatures are freezing, one of the coldest days of the year. High tide comes at 9pm and it`s dark; there won`t be much on YouTube.

As I write TBS radio, a Tokyo radio station has switched back to normal programming.  For Tokyo this earthquake is already over.

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