the first Sakura, cherry flowers in Nara
It has been 25days since the deadly catastrophe hit the northern Japan, - earthquake, Tsunami and nuclear plant crisis. Always thinking of the people in suffering, we began to do what we can do. Especially young people's energy and contribution are the greatest. They are genius in using Internet or social network.
a tiny,tiny bud of "Thunberg spirea"; Japanese name is "Yuki-Yanagi" meaning snow willow
The fans of "Evangelion", which is extremely popular animation as well as manga (comics), started "Operation Yashima" shortly after unfathomable disasters hit Tohoku area, Japan. This operation is to call for people to save energy so that more electricity can be sent to the stricken area, and the message has been sent through Twitter. In "Evangelion" , people need a huge energy to fight against the enemy attacking to destroy human beings. All energy in Japan is collected, so the whole Japan is blacked out. This is named "Operation Yashima" in the story.
In response of this "Operation Yashima" , another movement began among young people. Volunteers set up the site for the saving-energy posters. The posters have been designed by professional designers and amateurs. Here is the site , sorry only in Japanese, but languages are no matter, they are appealing. And you can print out any of them, use them and link them without permission. With these printed posters, young people have been visiting shops, restaurants, convenience stores and more to ask for their cooperatrion. My favorite one is this.
"Tonight, Japan will become the darkest country."
The lit area showed by whitish yellow dots is Tohoku, the stricken area. I wondered that hundreds years ago, how people had lived without a flood of energy? They must have enjoyed beautiful star-filled night sky talking the legends of stars and constellations. Where have all of them gone?
A group of university students set up a multilingual website for foreign residents seeking information about the disasters. Now information is available in 41 languages thanks to more than 100 volunteers, including university students, professors and native speakers of those languages.
young leaves of maple tree bathed in golden sunsetOne young man, who is also one of survivors, has been walking to shelter to shelter to find out accurate savivors' names and locations and been tweeting to send the information to the people who are desperately worrying about whether their loved ones are alive. How many people have been relieved to have reached his information.
I am deeply moved in awe of tenderness and contribution of young people. They are the hope to rebuild Japan, better Japan , home for everybody.
Nara, the ancient capital of Japan, is praying for Tohoku. On April 1st, Himuro Shrine( Himuro means the ancient natural refrigerator) held the candle lightning ceremony to celebrate 1300th anniversary of offering ice ritual. At the same time, this ceremony became the moment to think and pray for Tohoku, the stricken area. A flickering light covered with an ice pot is so tiny but evokes firm hope-Japan will rise again.
This shrine is famous for an old weeping cherry tree which blooms first in Nara, an usher of spring in Nara.
The old weeping cherry tree is opening it's arms and bracing people.
Asahi Newspaper introduced Haiku, a short poem,
"Being alive/Just being alive is enough/ Swallows come." by Misao Iida
Unknown flowers are beautifully blooming.
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