One day, anyone comes to a point in their life. We have to decide to live as a victim or someone new. Living as a victim is easy. Self-pity hides everything from our sight and we can blame destiny for anything that happens in our life, and then we get trapped in the hole. No one will stay with us forever when we make no effort to step forward. Living as someone new resembles forgiveness but it’s not the same. There is a long way to find the difference between both.
I managed to move to an Eastern European country, Romania after traveling the world for a couple of years. I can’t describe how grateful I am for all those people who helped me out, but living and traveling without any legal stay permits was psychologically painful. Even though my Japanese passport allows me to stay in most countries for up to 90 days without a stay permit, I still had to keep popping around. As a man in my late 20s on continuous travel, I looked like a typical illegal immigrant. Going through the borders became harder and harder and it’s never a sustainable way of living.
Romania has all I needed to live in. First of all, it has one of the fastest internet connections in the world and it’s extremely cheap and stable. The society needs people like Japanese or American and I could comfortably continue my blog activity and obtain a legal stay permit. It actually feels like a very rural area of Italy or Germany and it was suitable for me when I wanted to do my things at my own pace.
I also started a new thing after I moved to Romania. Because the country doesn’t have a big population of Japanese immigrants, there were a lot of things to research and demands for Japanese who are seeking an opportunity in Romania as one of European options. As time passed after 311, more and more people went back to their normal life before the accident even though the situation never changed in the crippled plant. I needed to germinate a new seed. Then I suddenly received a phone call from PayPal out of the blue. They suspended my account with no explanation and held my balance for 6 months. It was my major mistake that I kept most of my money in a PayPal account, and moreover, it was literally my only way to receive money from my readers. Actually I was already a legal entity so it was my company account. This is how my blog activity was suddenly forced to shut down. Thankfully still some readers continued to send me money by some other methods, but it became extremely difficult to continue it in the same form. Back then, there were not so many alternative services on the internet. I could have tried every single way to replace the Paypal button, but it was about time to move forward. I was feeling tired of being deemed a victim by some people, and I also realized that some people were waiting for a new explosion or births of malformed babies. The image of me and the blog went too far away from how they are actually. I wanted to explore how Japanese can live with the steaming reactors.
However, I never decided to quit Fukushima Diary. Even though it was a difficult time for me, I kept the server and domain for almost 7 years. It costs about 600 euros every year, but it’s not about money. It’s about sending a message. I didn’t even want to keep it as an archive of information related to the accident. Fukushima Diary must be the most updated and a live source of information about the Fukushima nuclear plant. A lot of other sites, such as Enenews etc. were closed. It’s such a loss to erase our trajectory. My mind clearly changed after quietly growing the vegetables for one year in the pandemic. I made a charity post for a stray cat adoption and I remembered the true feeling of working for something good. Now it’s difficult to update it more than weekly as research takes longer than ever, but I’m putting Fukushima Diary back on track again.