Tuesday, August 9, 2011
Tokyo is closed
The ride on the monorail from Haneda Airport was smooth. I kept looking for any damage, broken windows, cracks in buildings and saw none. How could a city survive an 8.8 earthquake with no damage? The only thing I saw that even suggested something was happening were the occasional strange ripples in waterways as we traveled.
I reached my hotel and and convinced the desk clerk to give me a room at that time instead of waiting till 3:00 pm. I knew I would have to pay but I wanted a place to rest, to use the internet and such. Luckily they were still serving breakfast in the little lobby so I made sure to eat finally. So many people were there. I don't usually take newspapers but I did this time.
Made it to my room. The view out the window showed no damage to anything. Amazing considering this is very near Tokyo Harbor and Rainbow Bridge. What I did see is all the offices were blacked out. No lights in any of them. It was Saturday so I didn't think too much of this.
Even the apartments appeared vacant.
I wasn't able to rest. I guess I was running on a bit of adrenaline, or perhaps still feeling shocked. I tried watching the news but had yet to figure out where the translation button was. At that point the news on-line was about the quake and a little about the tsunami. The other thing on my mind is trying to find food for lunch and dinner.
Since it appeared I wasn't going to be able to go anywhere I decided it would be best to walk around the area that I got to know my last visit here. I stopped by the Inari shrine next door and said it was good to see it was there and fine.
However it was quickly evident that finding food was not going to be easy. For all the restaurants were closed.
Including my favorite bagel shop, Poko Montreal Bagels. It was understandable, people had bigger things to deal with that day.
Even the boats on the Furukawa seems quieter than usual.
Finding less people around and not much else to do, I explored a bit more. Seeing things like this Shinto shrine hidden between two buildings. It is on the bank of the Furukawa.
The streets of Shiba strangely empty of cars and people. Daimon still there but around it, everything was closed. Even McDonalds and Family Mart. I could see finding food was not going to be any easier than trying to get information as to what was going on in Japan at that time.