Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Rising Sun

This morning we got some pretty awful news. More than a week ago, an earthquake rocked Japan, followed by a tsunami that destroyed most of the northern coast.

Since The Fall, there has been very little in the way of international communication. The internet is mostly functional because of cellular signals, and most of what is usable here in the USA is run by Google. It pains me to hear so late that such a tragedy has hit Japan, and the repercussions of the earthquake have been worse for the survivors there than The Fall itself.

I've heard bits and pieces from my contacts at Google about how other countries have weathered the zombie plague. India was hit harder by the undead than almost any other place because of the population density there. The people of the middle east took drastic and severe measures to curb the viral spread of zombies, leaving themselves in better shape than most places.

Japan, I hadn't heard all that much about. I knew that many survivors had moved to places at the foot of mountains, where they might still be able to farm but could run to the safer places in the foothills if needed. Most of what we knew about Japan we learned a few months in, well after the metropolitan areas of that country were abandoned.

The consequences of the earthquake are severe. The tsunami triggered by the quake smashed one of their nuclear power plants to bits, and while it had been shut down since shortly after the zombie plague destroyed most of the civilized world, there was still a lot of waste there, and the area around it has been horribly contaminated.

All along the coast, huge swaths of land have been totally destroyed. There were a fair number of survivors that chose to stay near the coasts, fishing for their food and living on boats. Others farmed close by, I'm told, since that is the best soil for it by far. There's no telling how many survivors, precious human beings that are the remnants of our race, were lost to such a violent act of nature.

My heart goes out to the remaining people of Japan. I've always had a fascination with their culture, and a deep love of their dedication to perfecting themselves. It saddens me that such a unique people should have to suffer such heartbreaking losses yet again. I know that their spirits are bruised right now, and that they may be cursing the fates that have brought down so much misfortune upon them.

I know that they will struggle, and that they'll fail at times. I also know that the core of the Japanese mindset is a rugged determination. That kernel of willpower has always been the driving force behind their martial arts, which is the first thing that comes to mind for me, since I practice three Japanese arts. It's also what drove the geisha to become flawless artisans, their smiths to make weapons of beauty and efficiency. It's what made their artists so talented, and later made their technology so much more advanced. That spirit of perfection lead the Japanese from the darkness of World War 2 into the modern age, a nation of warriors who embraced peace and drove themselves to make ever-larger leaps toward the future.

It is that spirit that has given them the will to survive The Fall, and the will to overcome this most recent tragedy. They will overcome it, be certain. They will carry on and become stronger as a people because of it, as they have always done. They are the shining example that the rest of us strive toward. I only wish that I could be there to help them.

Ganbatte Ne, surviors of Japan. Good luck.

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