Urayasu: Spring, Dust, Liquefaction and Hope

I spent three hours yesterday wondering around Shin Urayasu trying to take in what my neighbors across the river from have been going through.  The first thing that I have to say is that although the damage is quite extensive, it can not even be compared to what the people in the Tohoku area have been going through.

As my sneakered feet wandered in between the houses, and apartment complexes that fill the reclaimed land of Urayasu, I couldn’t help but notice that for as much damage that had been done, there was as construction crews all over the city.  The dusty air filed my nose and the rattling of jack hammers hit my eardrums.  I was surprised to see housewives sweeping up dust into white drawstring bags and placing them in front of their homes.

A sign at a local kindergarden gives the people words of encouragement in their times of trouble.  I was warmed to see people working as a community to help get the city back to normal as quickly as possible.

Walking along recently graveled filed sidewalks I would stop and stare at a portion of a wall that had collapsed or to watch a construction crew to repair streets.  The amount of activity was mind boggling.

I have great hope for the future of Japan.  Japan has an opportunity to come together to face the triple disaster and emerge on the other side stronger and connected with each other.  Spring is here.  The flowers are reaching for the sun.  I pray that all the love and cooperation will continue long after all the dust has been cleaned from the streets.

Don't Give Up Urayasu, Urayasu 2011

Sunken Bench in Mihama 3 Chome, Urayasu 2011

Much Work to be Done, Urayasu 2011

The Steps Vanished, Urayasu 2011

Tilting Police Box, Urayasu 2011

Spring Renewal in the Dust, Urayasu 2011

3 Responses to “Urayasu: Spring, Dust, Liquefaction and Hope”

  1. hanae Says:

    Jacob, thanks for the sharing this. This is the real Urayasu I saw and felt. And I worried about the people’s mental health who grow in patience their situation with no complain. You know, the places most extensively damaged are kind of high-end area (Shin-Urayasu and Maihama). People decided to live here because they like and proud of this city very much.
    Even now there are so many houses has no water and wastewater infrastructure, it means they can not have healthy life at all.

    The police office on your pic is nearby my niece’s preschool.  She is going to be a elementary school pupil from this April. I just want hand down her and other kids beautiful and hopeful future. I appreciate what you says ‘great hope’ !!!

  2. Jacob Says:

    yes hanae
    i know that the times are troubling for the residents of Urayasu. Many of the shin urayasu residents are from other places in japan, but chose to live there. the old (下町) urayasu had no damage from what i could see.

    as for the police box, i taught a mixed media art class at the community center right behind it. at one point i lived in maihama, and as you know i worked and i am still working in urayasu; therefore, i have solidarity with the residents.

    i am sure with the peoples will to overcome these difficulties that urayasu will emerge better than before.

    i wish your niece a smooth start this spring.

    thanks for your heart filled thoughts


  3. hanae Says:

    solidarity …oh yes, yes we have power!  

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