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Sunday, April 20, 2014

MUFA Day#13: Fukushima

How appropriate that on the My Ultimate Fantasy Adventure Day #13 I find myself in Fukushima, the site of the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster.  This was a fancy Shinkansen combo that got me from Tokyo:


I was welcomed by a hula halau:


This group comes regularly comes to Hawaii. 

I checked into catching a cab to get a close-up photo of the nuclear disaster, but this station is 50 miles away, and the roundtrip cost could have been up to $500 if I could find a driver.  However you can't get close anyway because of these restriction zones:


However, there is a bus that gets close, and then a cheaper taxi ride.  Return on Day 16 for that possibility.

In any case, I did visit a display on the Restoration of Fukushima, and met with Kouichi Yoshihara of the Japan Nuclear Safety Institute.  He provided some information in English and said he would send me additional data by e-mail.  Perhaps in a few days I'll summarize these references, for they are extensive and up to date.  As you know, the people of the region continue to get shockingly new information about how terrible the effect has been on them, and getting worse.  Just today in the Japan Times the manager of Fukushima No. 1 nuclear reactor admitted, with some embarrassment, that the radioactive water problem IS OUT OF CONTROL!!!

However, enough of all that.  Here are some minor silver linings:  photos on the street next to the Fukushima Station:


To drown my woes, I bought the best sake from Fukushima and on my Shinkansen ride back to Tokyo drank the whole bottle with a truly excellent assortment of sushi:


If you were wondering about the sake glass, I carefully quaffed it like beer, certainly aberrant if you live here, but a lot more efficient nevertheless.  All the above cost $25.

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