↓ The photo taken just in front of the convenient store. Behind me, there are scared sparrows.
There is a major IT consulting firm on the way home. I had been an intern there. I saw employees walking from the company instead of train. They were Japanese.
About half of the employees were Chinese. It was one month later to hear all of them evacuated immediately after the earthquake. They left to save their lives even before quitting the company.
Someone said, they know they mustn’t trust the government.
I came to the bridge over the highway. One way was shut down, the other way was completely jammed. I thought my coworkers can never come home within the day. That was the right choice not to wait for them at the office.
↓ The picture I took from the bridge. It was already becoming dark.
My apartment was on the top of the hill, in a rural area. As I got near my home, it became more quiet and peaceful as if nothing happened.
However, when I got home, it already started dark. If I left work 10 minutes later, it would have been completely dark. The outside of the apartment looked fine. I opened the post. Letters from the world before 311 were in it.
The electricity was already back in my area. I stepped up the stairway and opened the door.
It was the mess.
Because I was poor, I made most of the things by DIY. Table, screen, lights, most of the things were made of junk such as pet bottle or CDs.
↓ After reconstruction. This is the wall/light made of pet bottles. Sometimes it was transformed to be a table. Everyone called it “strange”.
They were scattered on the floor, and even my audio of PC were dropped and the wooden floor was damaged. However, the PC was safe though it moved on the desk and the turtles were fine. They were hiding in their shells. Heaters were fine as well.
I dropped my bag on stool, thought. What to do.
Turned on the PC and heater. I really appreciate the electricity because I didn’t know anything about nuclear at that time. and had a shower. I really needed it.
I didn’t forget to stock water in bathtub. I learnt that from the movie titled The road.
In the first quake, I remembered the sea of fire in Kobe back in 1995. The flash back was strong enough to make me associate it with the movie. After all, tap water in my area contained high level of Iodine 131 and Cesium 134/137 from the following week. That was the right decision to keep water.
I didn’t have a TV. Had to rely on the internet. The first website I visited was Facebook. Just after the earthquake, most of the websites hosted by Japanese servers went down. Only google, Twitter, and Facebook were alive.
It was full of “feelings” such as fear, shock, anger,sorrow, but there were not so much useful information.
I saw someone posted that NHK and TBS are broadcasting news on Usteam. We usually have to pay for NHK to watch, but they opened their service for emergency.
I wasn’t very impressed because TV news is always repetitive and slow. However, better than nothing.
NHK, TBS, they both were reporting Tsunami. Black tide, small cars and people running from the sea like ticks running from hoover. Fire, destroyed towns.
I couldn’t believe that happened in Japan. Energy got out of my body. I had been tensioned since 14:46, but I became all loose. I was standing in front of the PC. couldn’t even sit down. I cried. I think none of Japanese didn’t cry for this scene. My glasses became full of my tears. It was the saddest scene ever. Innocent people, almost my “family” were killed. thought about the people killed my the quake and tsunami, and had their family killed too. Why do they have to be killed? Did they do something wrong ? Is that the punishment ? I really wanted to do something for the people. I felt like they were my close family.
With my salty glasses, I managed to prepare dinner. With my dinner in my left hand, I opened the website of Nikkei, which is supposed to be the most authentic newspaper like Wall Street Journal or NYT. I thought that way until that time.
Huge headline jumped into my eyes. I hadn’t seen such a warning headline.
It read “Cabinet declared nuclear emergency.”
This is real. This is the reality. Earthquake, Tsunami, and nuclear.
The huge headline changed almost every 30 seconds.
“Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency gave out nuclear hazard.”
“All power lost in Fukushima Daiichi, Daini, and Onagawa”
“Evacuation order in 2km area”
The huge headline was telling Nikkei didn’t know anything more than the headline.
I wanted to know more.
I typed F5 impatiently but no detailed information was given. However, every time I restarted the page, the headline because more serious.
At 21:23, evacuation zone became 3km.
I thought it was far enough ?
Around 21:30, other news sites started saying, Roshin Yoyu.
Roshin means fuel. Yoyu means melt.
At that time, I still thought Roshin Yoyu was slightly different from Meltdown, and it’s less severe than that. It can not happen in Japan.
I had heard the word “meltdown” from a Godzilla movie.
It doesn’t seem to end within this weekend. I thought so.
NHK was still repeating Tsunami scene, but sometimes reported Tokyo.
Because of the power black out, JR and all the other provate rail line stopped. Shinjuku, Shibuya, all of these major stations became full of people who can’t go home. The night, about 5.15 million people were stuck in Tokyo.
I was lucky to be able to come home on foot.
News reporter was saying, the streets were stuck, it was really difficult to move. Everyone was watching their mobile phone to get information so it’s very slow.
Everyone was seeking for information.
I finished dinner. had a heater. and I even had facebook.
I became like a traffic information center. Everyone asked me if JR was working or what public bus was working, from which station to where.
It was like this, because they can’t find information from Japanese website or they were closed, people asked their friends overseas and they seek for information on Facebook. I collected information from NHK or TBS and distributed it on Facebook. My information was transfered to Japanese in Tokyo to help them make up their mind to wait on the cold street or drink at a bar all night long.
This is the beginning of Fukushima Diary.
This website updates the latest news about the Fukushima nuclear plant and also archives the past news from 2011. Because it's always updated and added live, articles, categories and the tags are not necessarily fitted in the latest format.
I am the writer of this website. About page remains in 2014. This is because my memory about 311 was clearer than now, 2023, and I think it can have a historical value. Now I'm living in Romania with 3 cats as an independent data scientist.
Actually, nothing has progressed in the plant since 2011. We still don't even know what is going on inside. They must keep cooling the crippled reactors by water, but additionally groundwater keeps flowing into the reactor buildings from the broken parts. This is why highly contaminated water is always produced more than it can circulate. Tepco is planning to officially discharge this water to the Pacific but Tritium is still remaining in it. They dilute this with seawater so that it is legally safe, but scientifically the same amount of radioactive tritium is contained. They say it is safe to discharge, but none of them have drunk it.