I was reading my friend’s blog post “Tohuku disaster helps explain why I love Japan” and he struck a chord. If you are a Japan enthusiast and not reading Jamaipanese blog, then shame on you. To quote the relevant part

Japan itself isn’t perfect but seeing videos and pictures of Japanese citizens lining up for supplies, helping each other out and not looting and rioting says a lot about the people. In Japan from an early age you are taught to be considerate and to deter your personal interests for the betterment of the larger group.

One thing which has always fascinated me about the Japanese is their stoicism and efficiency; and the reaction in the aftermath of the tsunami was very uplifting to see, it was devoid of the panic and desperation that many recent disasters have sparked.

There also is the gaman effect. Living on an island prone to volcanoes, typhoons, earthquakes  has bred a resilience and perseverance into the Japanese that other people would do well to learn from.

Work together and help each other, do not panic and you will go on. There is more strength in yourself than you would ever have known possible.

Ganbaru Japan!

Here is the post I have been needing to make for several days now, an 9.0 earthquake struck off the coast of Japan. The earthquake didn’t cause anywhere near the amount of damage as the resulting Tsunami that flooded the coast. Destroying everything in its path, up to six miles inland, whole towns and villages were wiped out.

One amazing thing in all the mess is the way the internet became the best resource for information. With virtually realtime commentary and news from Twitter feeds of various people living in Tokyo to the English broadcast of the NHK and Japanese TV. The link to the live UStream broadcast  of NHK World (English) is here NHK Ustream. Some really good folks to follow on Twitter with news and translations of press conferences are @gakuranman @kenmogi @HirokoTabuchi and @stevenagata.

The Japanese people are stoic and efficient but the scale of this is simply staggering and our hearts go out to the people of Japan.