“The nuclear power plants are having a few issues which are fully under control and pose no risk to the public”…. Switch over to bbc.co.uk…. “Experts are predicting that the nuclear situation in Japan is increasingly worsening and could possibly lead to a disaster like Chernobyl if not managed immediately… Only essential travel to Japan recommended.”
Right! Initially we thought that the UK media was blowing the Fukushima power plant situation out of proportion because let’s face it, the worse the situation, the more the interest… So we went along our merry way relaxing in Osaka…
It’s true there isn’t much to see there in the way of sights but it is a fun city to hang around in, eat good food, check out the shops and admire the Japanese youth culture… By that we mean, check out what the girls and guys wear here… Knee high socks are like a uniform and as for what you wear them with, the shorter the better and don’t forget the super high heels or over the knee boots… How disgraceful… I LOVED IT! Lol … To see more of the Japanese fashion statement check out D* (will check name). It was pretty fun here.
Apart from that, we ventured to Den Den, Osaka’s answer to technology town… Far from impressed… And hung around Umeda, the business side of town (well that’s what they said).. We were lucky enough to have booked a super cheap rate at a business hotel in this district, which we eventually found right behind ‘Girls, Girls, Girls’ and next door to ‘Girl’s Bar’. Charming! Highly recommend it!!
That night in Osaka, we felt the room shake… Oi, oi, not what you’re thinking.. 3 days since the big earthquake, another earthquake hit near Tokyo but we felt it 12 hours away in Osaka… This was on top of the aftershocks being felt in Tokyo on an hourly basis. Despite me trying to convince Rishi it was probably a train taking a detour underneath our hotel (?!(@? He wasn’t buying it either) we knew that the situation was getting worse. The Fukushima nuclear plant was not doing so well in controlling its reactors either, with explosions unnerving everyone in the early hours of the morning.
Our parents (as well as friends sending messages stating bluntly ‘get out of Japan’) were obviously concerned and suggesting that we do not go back to Tokyo for our flight to China but either change it or just buy new ones from an airport near us instead. There was no point arguing anymore, going back to Tokyo didn’t sound safe (although we really wanted to)!
The hilarious irony was that the next day we were doing a day trip to Hiroshima. Yeup, where the first nuclear bomb was used on humans! The peace park has remnants of a building that was damaged by the nuclear bomb but overall is actually a beautiful park and hard to imagine what it would have looked like when the bomb hit. The museum however has some shocking images and depictions of the effect of that horrendous event. Think the pics below give an indication of how “effective” a nuclear bomb can be!
And this was technology over 50 years ago. I dread to think what new discoveries have been uncovered since then.
Walking through the place, my mind was flitting between anger at the effect of war… No-one deserves to have a nuclear bomb thrown on them but as posters in the museum admit, the Japanese were not innocent when it came to inflicting pain and suffering on other nations in that war either. So what is the need to kill people who probably did not even know what the war was for or sign up to be pawns in these evil game played by the leaders of their nations?… The other part of mind was worrying about the effects of the nuclear explosions a few hundred kms away from us if we went back to Tokyo… In these situations there’s no better solution than the fail safe “Daddy, help!”… My dad had been up since 5am calling the airlines and managed to get our flights changed so that we would leave a day early from Hiroshima instead of risking a trip to Tokyo.
Happy to be safe but sad to be leaving Japan early.
We spent our last day in Kyoto, enjoying the best chocolate doughnut (available in Kyoto station), chilling in our favourite hostel (Khaosan) and visiting our favourite indian restaurant (they had really good chai and kulfi!). (sorry for the funny pic Rish)
Sadly, we are leaving today and on our flight to Shanghai… Booo! Think we have really bonded with Japan, so much so that I feel I am abandoning them, not that I know how I would help. I hope that Japan maintains its beauty, its traditions and fantastic vibe… Without a doubt we will be back some day and next time it will be in cherry blossom season! 🙂