Enka: Minatomachi Monogatari

If you liked Port Town Blues, you will love Minatomachi Monogatari (Stories from a harbour town). Yokohama, Nagasaki, main ports that are so very well known around the world. Also, Hakodate, which perhaps only a few of my regular Kurashi readers can find on a map.

The Swedish Foreign Ministry still treats all of Japan as a "no fly zone" in the sense that noone is recommended to travel to these parts. I find that rather silly. They also have similar advice for other trouble zones, like India, but then their advice is limited to the region they think you should not visit (Kashmir).

Japan has some 43 prefectures, and only 3 or 4 are directly affected by the current disaster: Fukushima, Iwate, Ibaraki. Late tonight, another big earthquake in Miyagi.


Kyushu, Shikoko and Hokkaido are not affected at all... Of course Osaka and the Kyoto and Nara regions are OK. That is called Kansai, and they must be rather upset down there that once again, the Kanto region is getting all the attention.

We are suddenly, and very rapidly, learning to live with less, consuming less, and I hope others around the world are also paying attention. Maybe the sad enka songs will carry us through. I think they have the power to heal, to make people cry, and go on and work hard, tomorrow. We live on a small planet. Japan in a sense is the experiment, whatever happens here can happen anywhere.

How will you deal with it? That is the story...


uhooi said…
The wheel of life must continue to run, keep the spirit and do not give up. Uhooi ...! Good article.
Tom O said…
The weird thing, in terms of most of the tsunami fundraising events seen promoted in London - locally and all over the city - is that its all 'Save Japan' this and 'Save Japan' that - whereas of said number of prefectures just (I obv don't just in its literal sense) the 3 kens on the north-east coast were affected. 'Save Tohoku, Japan' is more tadashii imho. Tohoku needs aid and prays, not Tottori or Oita - keep the focus.
Martin J Frid said…
Tom, I really agree. I wish we could make that more clear. 43 prefectures, only 2-4 badly affected. Yet, foreign media seems to have no idea about Tohoku. It's like they don't know that "New England" is not the entire United States.

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