Looks pretty heavy over there right now.
Zenagain don't you live and surf in japan? Hope you're safe and ok.
Is zenagain the very same person as 'llo and behold from realsurf?
does anyone know where zen lives in japan?
ditto benski ...'i hope you're ok'.
Going by his profile he is in Ibaraki,around 200km south of Sendai.
Not a good place to be for this one.
Havent checked what its like around Ibaraki,Ill have a look now.
My daughter inlaw's family live in Osaka,they felt it but thankfully no tsunami.
Yes googled it & it copped it bad,its where the whirlpool formed of the coast after the waves hit.
They would have lost everything so we might not hear from him for a while.
I just hope your ok mate.
Gees, that doesn't sound good at all spongebob. Been reading the news a bit more since I posted - so full on. I reckon you're right about not hearing from him for a while, I imagine most comms infrastructure would be down, probably for weeks to months.
Yes benski grim & now they are facing the prospect of another large adjustment quake near Tokyo in about a months time.
As for this reactor...
Guys, I'm truly touched.
Literally just got the power back on.
We are fine here, spent yesterday sweeping out broken glass and porcelain from the MIL's house. Lucky it's been flat for a few days, would have been surfing.
Quake was surreal. Chatting to a neighbour over the balcony, dropped a couple of icecreams down for the kiddies and heard it coming. The roar of it was amazing. Buildings swaying, power poles rocking and rolling, stuff crashing through the apartment. Told the lazy arse kid zoning out in front of the computer to get the f**k out but he was way ahead of me. Stood on the front lawn while a couple of old residents were on their hands and knees, I've never seen so much fear in someones eyes. I tried to tell them in my best Japanese that everything will be ok with the sound of breaking glass and smashing roof tiles surrounding us. Got some video of it on my mobile.
Scary thing is the Fukushima nuclear plant is about 30 k's north (smokin' river mouth, sand bottom left hand barrells in a northerly with a bit of swell) and surfed it dozens of times.
Am impressed with the Japanese though. We have little water, no gas, cars are almost empty, we line up for hours for water and whats left of food on the shelves and there's no pushing, shoving, arguments, just a stoic acceptance that we're all in the same boat. Small acts of kindness, a bottle of water here, a choccie there, a polite nod and bow.
Am a bit pissed, my aircons have been ripped from the wall of my place of business, plus I have a few huge cracks right through the plaster. Being the shallow bastard I am though my new Sony Bravia (still in the plastic and uninsured) unscathed. Stoked!
So, thanks once again, twas a beautiful day today here and the surf was again flat but I am one of the lucky ones. Got a skinfull of beer and will live to surf another day. I am truly blessed. I am very sad for some of the people around me though.
So no water where you were,are you back from the coast?How did your local coast fair?
Good to see Swellnet hasnt lost one of its foreign correspondents.
I just saw some footage, it was the duration and slow building power of the tsunami which was truly shocking : the thing lasted over 5 minutes and just grew in intensity......fucking wiped out evrything.
Is it just me or is the Ring of Fire throwing up more and more tsunamis in the last couple years?
All the best to the Japanese people affected in the recovery and healing process.
Yeah Steve, I agree. It is also getting alot more TV time with so many cameras to witness.
I think that when one plate moves, all the others have to adjust to fit in to the new arrangement. That was one hell of a big movement. I wonder when and where the next one will be?
There is alot of cleaning up to do out there and I hope they all get through it OK.
Hell yeah. With all that activity it sure makes you wonder how safe those Mentawai land camps are.
Was talking to a bloke who was in the Maccas camp for last Octobers Tsunami.......sounded freaking terrifying.
Stoked to hear your safe Zenagain.
Yeah, I'm off to Sumatra in June and with all the surrounding volcanos and the plates all shifting around, I think will make for light sleeping! Still, cant live your life wrapped in cotton wool.
Just a small update and in response to Spongebob's question. I'm up on high ground about 500 metres back from the coast, I live in Hitachi city and the coastline here is a series of sandstone cliffs with little nooks and crannies for surfing (those that havn't been totally cemented off denying access) and it flattens out as you head a few clicks north.
Our Tsunamis were only a couple of metres, the worst area is about a 5 minute drive from here and the wave has come and washed up and over the wall and buckled the road (maybe that was the quake) and washed through a low lying area below our train station. There's rubbish and debri everywhere but looks to be ok. I have a view of the ocean and saw our tsunami coming, I didn't know what I was looking at, I thought it was a wind line but the ocean did look strange.
Once again, we've been pretty lucky, only about 20 deaths and because Hitachi was practically re-built after being levelled in WWII, most of the buildings have been built to handle the shocks. Most of the damage here is superficial, broken windows, roof tiles, buckled walls etc
So today we have power, but still no water and no gas. There are fewer and fewer aftershocks which is nice. You hear them before you feel them and they kind of put you on edge.
I agree with fitzroy-21 above, what are you going to do? Can't wrap yourself in cotton wool.
And just as I'm writing this an aftershock right on cue.
So today, with power comes great responsibility and I'm off to the mountain to get the water bottles filled. I might even check the surf if my wife lets me- ha ha.
good to see you back online and happy to hear that you didn't have to duck-dive a tsunami although it would have made an awesome story.
spongebob i have friends and family in japan so i'm interested to hear more about the 'adjustment quake'.
Wonder if the land camps in Sumatra/Mentawaiis will build a tsunami shelter now: a high building with reinforcing to head to in case of an earthquake/tsunami.
Those low thatched huts would be as useless as tits on a bull if a tsunami roared through.
Incredible stuff zenagain. Are you only 30 clicks from the Fukushima plant? Holy crap, that's really close given the atomic emergency at hand.
Glad to hear you're alright mate.
THe ring of fire is certainly doing it's thing at the moment.
Thought you might be interested in the below, it really shows the true extent of the devastation. It is hard to believe that the death toll will be 10,000 as the authorities are predicting, I would think it is going to be way higher.
Kieru dont worry to much,its only a posibility atm,it may not happen at all.
People in Japan are worried about it & no one knows their plates habits like the Japanese,so its worth paying attention to.
Where the grey lines(Tectoinc plates)on this map meet near Tokyo is where this adjustment may take place.This is an area where three major plates meet(Pacific,Eurasian & Phillippine Sea).
Like F-21 said part of the Pacific plate has moved,now the stress from that point has been released,stress will start to build somewhere else along the plate boundary.
This happens all the time all around the planet where the plates meet.
Thanks for feed back Zen,now with water being in short supply I suggest you do your bit & stick to beer only till the crisis is over.
Good to hear you're all good Zen!
And here's just a quick calculation that can be easily remembered and used to calculate the travel speed of the Tsunami and hence the arrival time.
It's simply squareroot( g*H )
g = gravity and H = average water depth.
So say for the Tsunami travelling through 4000m of water, we just multiply this by 9.8, which gives us 39,200.
Now take the square root of 39,200 and you get 197.99m/s
So this equals 712km/h, which is pretty damn quick.
If the Tsunami is in shallower water it moves slower, but if it is in deeper water it is faster.
So if you remember this simple equation it can come in handy..
squareroot( g*H )
I always carry that equation around in a waterproof pouch.. you never know when it'll come in handy.
thanks for the info spongebob.
this may be the same one that's been predicted for some time now ... let's hope it's a fizzer!
Look at the speed these boats are travelling when they get swamped under the bridge!
There were conflicting reports of whether Australia would notice tsunami . Anyone know if anything was measured ? There seemed to be some unusual tide movements at North Harbour on Saturday evening .
I worked for a short while in Japan (Shinjuku) in the early '90s. One day in the office, I felt the building moving (actually I noticed the trees moving first out the window). When I asked "was that an earthquake?", staff looked at me as if to say "dur, what else would it be?". They happen every other day in Japan.
Thoughts and prayers to you and your family Zen, and to those less fortunate in the country.
Got a couple of mates over there with the USAR response. Thinking of them too.
As I type, I'm listening to a news flash about another 5m wave heading into the same area.
Guys, prob last post for awhile. The number 3 reactor at fukushima had a hydrogen explosion. Thankfully we have a brisk wind from the SW blowing it all out to sea. Also, I'm 30 k's from the Iwaki plant but about 100 k's from the one that blew near Fukushima city (I think it's called Dai'iichi #1 plant).
The authorities are saying everything is ok and the danger from radiation is low. I don't trust them though but not much we can do, there's no petrol and both mine and my wives cars are very low.
We had another big shake this morning, about a 5, just as my wife and I and a couple of her colleagues (she's a museum curator) were scrounging the last of the food and water from the museum cafe.
Anyway, we've got food for about 3 days and water for 2 and we have a few litres of kero for heating.
My wife is playing piano in the next room right now and it's beautiful. I'm calm and relaxed but I can tell you, earthquakes suck!! I used to think the tremors that rushy above speaks of were fun. Not anymore, especially when I see what it's done to my town.
That mother nature sure can be a bitch, but you have to love her, she had me at hello.
Finally, any kiwi surfers know of a mate Jerry Parangi (Jetz)? He's a surfer mate from Sendai and we can't contact him. Does anybody know if he's been in touch with home (family or friends). We're concerned.
So thanks everyone for your wishes, we'll be ok. Spare a thought for those that don't have a roof.
My brother has just been sent from his OS posting by DFAT to help the search & rescue teams in Sendai. He knows a lot of the NZ crew very well through various diplomatic postings over the years. I will send him a email and see if he can find some info for you. Don't expect a reply soon tho' he is pretty swamped at the moment. I feel for him, what he will see will not be nice, and certainly different from his 'normal' desk job.
best wishes mate....
Thanks for posting so far zen. All the best getting through the next few weeks and finding your mates.
Man we can create and destroy an awful lot as a species, but we're nothing next to the power of the earth.
But then the truly random shit where some guy is found floating on a house roof 15kms out to sea or something. I mean shit.
Sorry, just kind of spinning out at the magnitude of it all.
Best to you and yours zenagain. I'll raise a toast to your good health when I get home.
Been sparing plenty of thoughts for all those people. The most densely populated island on the planet, IIRC.
If I were in your position, I'd try to get out if I could. I've had more tsunami nightmares than I can count since I was about 23. But nuclear reactors, well that's a whole different fear.
Not good news out of Fukushima today, another blast this time at Number 2 reactor that looks to have caused a serious leak.
On that link the ABC have mentioned elevated radiation at Ibaraki (I think the area zen lives in). Not a good thing.
And still the apologistas for nuclear power are coming out of the woodwork denying everything.
First they said it would only be a problem if they had to use seawater to cool the rods, but that wasn't going to happen. Next thing you know they are pumping seawater and boric acid into the reactor.
Next they say, no that isn't a problem, it will only be a problem if there is a blast. then there's two (3?) blasts and they come out and say 'no, not a problem, only slightly radioactive (recalling the joke about being slightly pregnant).
Next they say that the amount of radiation is equivalent to less than an average x-ray. Latest reports, The radiation level outside the complex has been recorded as being eight times in excess of the annual safe limit for human exposure every hour.
No doubt we will then hear them say, no it's only a problem if there is a complete meltdown!
There is one thing you can guarantee about nuclear energy. Those who support the industry will never transparently let on about the inherent risks involved.
How do you know when the apologistas for nuclear energy are lying?
Their lips are moving, and sound is emanating from their collective orifices.
I'm still here and things are pretty much the same. Still no water or gas, we have power but there's no fuel for the cars. Plus, it's effing freezing.
I'm about 40k's from Iwaki and about 80k's from the Daiichi plant where all this shit is going down.
Information is at a trickle and I'm getting better quality stuff from Reuters.
What they're not saying is they have trouble at the Tokai plant about 20k's south of us too. But even if we want to get out we cant, got no fuel and no way of getting it.
So got the place sealed up and watching Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan speaking fluent Japanese on tv. (desperation measures)
Well I suppose if we ever try to have a baby there's a good chance I'll be infertile or if we succeed he'll probably grow up with red hair and a cleft-palate.
Worst thing is, I've run out of beer. Can't complain though, at least I still have my hair and teeth.
Stay safe everybody.
Oh, and we found Jetz- Typical, that bloke is bullet proof.
Shit Zen,I was hoping to hear you & your girl were on a plane & heading home.
Looks like all you can do is ride this one out.
Great to hear your mate is ok,but shocking news about the beer,one should always keep a bottle of metho handy for emergencies.
Take care mate.
Yeah take care Zen, sounds like a scary situation, but positive thoughts will always get you through.
Wishing you lots of luck matey!!
hey Zen, just been thinking about the situation over there and I'm curious about a bunch of things. I don't mean to pry or anything but what is the day to day life there like at the moment. I mean, you can't go anywhere by the sounds cos there's no fuel available, but there is electricity at the moment. You said there was water you scrounged from the museum to drink so does that mean there's nothing in the taps or is what's coming out of the tap too polluted? Did you find more beer???
Are you basically stuck indoors cos of the radiation or are people out and about? And what's the vibe among people? I imagine it's a state of stunned shock and it's probably not safe enough to get out to start some sort of cleanup. Shit where would you begin anyway.
All the video footage I've seen shows muddy water surging around with the tsunami. Have you been down to look at the surf around those cliffs and if so does it look kind of normal again or is it still all messed up.
Sorry to bombard you with a shit load of questions, I realise it might be inappropriate. If you don't feel like answering these sorts of things that's totally cool but you're on the ground in the midst of a massive disaster that I can hardly comprehend so I figured I'd ask. Sorry if it's intrusive or inappropriate.
Nah Benski,ã€€it's cool ask away.
As I've mentioned, we've been pretty lucky. I can only really speak of our area (Hitachi). We are in northern Kanto pretty much on the border of Tohoku where the really big stuff happened. Our apartment is quite new and was unscathed except for all the pictures falling off, stuff falling out of cupboards etc. Places around me have mostly superficial damage, windows, roof tiles, retaining walls etc. The road in front of my place has been diverted because a huge slab of a 10 m high retaining wall has separated and could collapse. Around town, it's pretty much the same. some places are a mess, some havn't got a scratch. We had to Karate kick a mates front door down so he could get in and get his stuff. his building has split in half and I dare say it will be condemned.
No water at all from the taps, day 6 now I think and we have to walk a few k's to different points to get water, but you can only get as much as you can carry. So havn't had a shower since last Thursday morning. But we stay clean with about half a litre and some soap and a handtowel. Also we wipe ourselves down with 'oshi bori' which are little wet-wipes ubiquitous in Japanese eating places (got a whole bag of those from the museum).
Petrol is a problem, there comes rumours of a place opening and rationing 10 litres per car and the lines stretch for blocks, my orange light is on so I can't risk being stranded and my wifey's got about a third of a tank and we are trying to save that.
The Japanese people are amazing, there's very little pushing or shoving, the lines for food in convenience stores and supermarkets are out the door and down the street. There are no queue jumpers but I think if there were they would be set upon, so everyone is cool in that regard. But the lines are getting smaller anyway, because there is no food left. I don't really know what people are doing but we're kind of sharing around stuff. I gave the lady downstairs a tub of museum icecream for her 2 kids and she cried. It was hard for me not to cry. But don't worry, we're doing our best to hold on to what we have. We have rice, noodles, cabbage, some tinned fish, condiments, milk, cheese, some bread, some snacks so we're in pretty good shape.
Back to the people, when outside, people say g'day but as you could imagine it's pretty quiet now with this nuclear thing, but people are nice. You can see the strain on peoples faces but I think there is an optimism in a way because things are much worse 100 k's north. Speak to Tokyo friends and apart from train delays, life is quite normal there. Kind of sucks in a way though with the hysteria on tv about radiation levels rising in Tokyo, there's no mention of the people who live in between. And it's kind of annoying when all these foreign experts tell you that if you go ouutside, come in have a shower, wash your clothes. With what? Coke?
Sorry, off tangent. Trying to stay happy, but must admit, mood is up and down. Wifey has been a trooper. We are just staying indoors for now and reading, playing cards, she plays piano (love that, she's a classically trained F-level pianist, loves Chopin), meal time is a highlight and so is bed-time, a snuggle, nice and warm. After-shocks are a constant and you hear them coming. They just don't even rate now- and one is happening just as I type again. We've had about 3 this morning. It's a pain though when the mobile phone earthquake alarm goes off when sound asleep as the stupid thing usually fires away after the shock. Ironic in a way- it's like 'Yes, we know!!'.
As for the coast, I havn't been able to get close enough to see it. I'm only 500 metres from the ocean and I have a view from my apartment, but I can't see the beach. My closest surfing spot is about a 10 minute drive. Will be interested to see what that looks like. On the actual night after the quake, we did manage to look at a small beachfront road as I was driving to pick up the MIL from hospital where my wifes dad is convalescing. Drove down the coast road to beat the traffic and thought this is cool, empty. For good reason, the Tsunami had washed through and all the road was buckled and broken and there was debri everywhere. We managed to weave our way through it and grabbed O'kasan (mama). Of course wifey wouldn't let me drive home the same way. So, not sure how the coast is looking even though it's a stones throw away. Hanging for a surf though and can see some nice offshore lines from the window.
And, this is a kicker and maybe selfish to mention, I was scheduled to open my own business this Friday. Spent a small fortune on it and had it pretty much set up and ready to go. I'm going to try to open as I've got nothing else, but I'm not crying, I still think I'm pretty lucky, just really fucking rotten timing.
Fielded calls from around the world yesterday, Hawaii, Indo, Hong Kong, Singapore, US and am stoked with the level of concern for us and offers of help. Also had a great drunken talk with my brother, he's a dude. He was telling me of some small warm water beachie tubes he was getting the other day at Narrowneck (we hail from the Main Beach area of the Goldy) told me he got his arse handed to him on a small back-hand drainer. Man I was so jealous but it was great to get my mind off things for awhile.
So, in closing, things are ok here. Not great but we're doing our best. The Japanese are amazing people and most have a sense that things will be ok.
Sorry it was long, but time is all I've got right now.
And with that, I'm off to find some water.
My gosh. Incredible reading about what you're going through Zen.. hang in there!
Mate I appreciate you taking the time to write that. I've been trying to get my head around it all and it's pretty hard to imagine. Speaking of offshore lines though, that footage of some of the secondary waves rolling in was amazing...such massive powerful lines just rumbling through in a nice offshore. Amazing to see.
bummer about your business though, totally crap timing. Good luck finding some water. That's gotta be a priority.
And some beers!
surfingsfuturepro wait til u get taken out by a big mac for messing with India's sacred cow, fool
what knid of tosser uses that phrase for name anyway?
a foolish tosser
Haven't heard from you for a while mate. Hope you and the family are alright/hanging in there. Thanks for the updates, my wife, babs and I just relocated to Indo so we get a fair bit of 'raw' news here, uncensored heart wrenching stuff. Your updates are really positive. We were thinking 'f@ck, what can we do?' At the minute it's just donating to the Redcross. Hopefully there will be more opportunities in the future.
Best of luck Zen
PS - try not to notice the immaturity of the 'ignorants' (above)
mr again well shock horror i have nothin to say exept you are a solid guy and one can only imagine what its like sorry to hear stuff like that. keep your chin up bigfella we are thinking of you and hoping all is well with you and yours.
Wow! bigwayne you've truly touched me (and not in the biblical sense) though I must confess, I do quite like your musings. You're quite the raconteur. I wouldn't put you in the loveable rogue category just yet, but likeable for sure. You sure know how to wind shaun up.
Thanks pepe, things are slowly getting back to normal with the exception of petrol. Roads are slowly opening, bent train tracks are being repaired, rubbish and debri being carted away. All you hear all day long is hammers and electric saws etc. For the last 2 mornings I've been up at 4am to get in line for our 20 litre ration of petrol. The 'gasorin sutando' opens at 8am and if you're in line by 430am you usually get through by 9am. I take my book and have a snooze and this morning there was almost a bit of biffo (if you could call it that). Some young punk tried to weasel his way into line, even though we were about a k back from the station and an old fella took exception. The young fella tried to ignore him but when the old bloke started kicking the shit out of his door, he got the message. Certainly broke the monotony.
So with half a tank of petrol now, I had my first surf check in over 2 weeks. Small and clean on a fullish tide but went home triumphant to the wife (managed to get kero for heating too) had some eggs and picked up my mate who comes from Santa Cruz Cali. We are the only 2 gaijin surfers in the area. We surfed a local beachie by ourselves and as it was our first surf in ages it was awesome fun. Nobody in the water anywhere but maybe because of the (negligible) increased radition levels in our area. Our wives think we are idiots though. Also there's still the threat of another Tsunami but it was our window of opportunity and we had to jump through it. Even though the little government car drives around blaring don't let your baby drink tapwater, don't eat spinach, don't eat this or that. They didn't say anything about don't go surfing.
It's amazing to see just how damaged the beachfront is with whole cement walls buckled and cracked, smashed houses, rubbish everywhere. It's going to take a long time to fix. Nows the time to be a tradesman in this area, I reckon you'd be flat out for the next 5 years.
So once again everybody, thanks heaps for your concern and wishes. You've all been very cool.
Where are you in Indo Pepe? One of best mates is based on Lombok, lives for Desert Point.
Jakarta, unfortunately or fortunately - depends how you look at it. So far so good. Mentawai's booked for July, Ulu's in April and hopefully West Java in between. But enough of that. Really glad to hear you are OK Zen. We get a lot of news here and the radiation situation is big. Hell, a guy I work with wore a mask for 2 days because of (potential) fall out.
Please keep the daily life updates coming. Loved the young fella door kickin' jib, public justice warms the values.
PS - previous threads thanks for the deletion (no.1) and humbleness big guy (no.2), it shows respect
Gday Zen,happy to hear things are slowly getting better for you guys.
Ive got to say hats off to the Fukushima 50,the Firefighters & all the workers trying to bring those reactors under control.Gutsy stuff & no doubt there are many other acts selflessness & heroism we will never hear about.
Hows your business plans?
Is there a reason you don't have your own blog? Seriously. Okay, perhaps a dumb question considering the curent circumstances. That said, you SHOULD have your own blog with daily updates as to your whole situation. Like right fucking NOW! Start retroactively, before the quake, and document thusly and soforthly.
I had the extreme pleasure of finding this forum thread by complete accident. I was searching for Shearer's recent work that inexplicably disappeared off the front page and found this. I clicked "tsunami" like every other retard looking for something titillating, and was subsequently captivated reading your very concise, entertaining, and timely prose.
Blew me straight the fuck away.
I mean this with every ounce of respect an ugly asshole rabbit like myself is capable of.
Stu should be putting this shit on his front page and paying you for it. No fucking joke.
You are a fucking hero to me, good sir. I, for one, would have shit me knickers before huddling in a treetop with me blankie, sookling me thumbs and crying for mammie rather than typing here or anywhere's else.
Huzzah, my good man!
fuck blogging! it's a machine, with oompa-loompas driving boats down chocolate rivers you can't dip your fingers in, fudge-packing torture chambers, experimental gum and bullshit fizzy lifting drinks. blogging's for kooks, brother zenagain! better get your sorry white ass and your wife's pretty yellow behind and her grand-faluten piano down to amami oshima, set up in some village at the southernmost end where she can play brahms on the sand as you surf a reeling barreling left in clear warm non-radioactive water, ain't no chocolate waterfalls.
blasphemy-rottmouth you are very kind but blogging is not my thing. If anything it all boiled down to circumstance. Right place, wrong time and time on my hands. But thanks heaps all the same.
I'm very perplexed with jim-frenzy above though. JF, do you hail from WA? I don't think we've ever met but gaijin surfers in Ibaraki are few and far between. Is there a common thread between a certain ex-pat Californian now residing in Indo or a shaved-head, Onjuku Chiba resident that loves Methamphetamine because it calms him down?
Anyway, clutching at straws here. Would love to take wifey away from all this and the pet Mamushi. I hear the Amami Habu's fighting skills are blown way out of proportion. But, too much coin tied up here in Hitachi now. Have moved up from Eikaiwa stooge to debt laden Daihyou. Also, give up filthy water, tetrapods and 5mm of rubber 8 months of the year for clear, tropical barrels? Are you mad?
Anyway, all is settling down here. Rebuilding is in full swing, the expressway has reopened and the Joban rail has re-connected to about 40 k's south of here (Katsuta). The link to Hitachi is scheduled to open around April 10. Petrol lines are getting smaller and with the exception of bottled water (panic buying because of the nuclear thing) most stuff is available in the supermarket now.
So I'm going to pop out now and grab a couple of those fizzy lifting drinks that JF speaks of, generously prepared by my mates at Suntory.
Stay cool everybody, as I know you will.
i'm from nsw and i lived down the end of chiba for a while but never made it to ibaraki. i do have a western australian mate who lived in ibaraki, think he's in broome now. i've been reading about the fukushima reactor every day. shit ain't getting better. scares the hell out of me. hope you and your loved ones stay safe and well, zenagain.