3.11.2011

in the middle of an earthquake in Japan

This is confusing I know, but I just want to get it posted while I still can. We are literally in the middle of an earthquake and aftershocks and I sent the following words in an email to family. This is overwhelming and wierd...like we're watching a movie. But the earth is swaying and doesn't seem to stop.

We are experiencing an earthquake - but we are all OK - we are at gary's apt. and Gary is at the Area office doing the emergency work that he has to do. We keep having tremors and lots of shaking but the epicenter is north in Sendai where we were going to be traveling tomorrow. It's an 8.9 up north and a 7 here. We are watching TV and sseeing a tidal wave up notrth. It's strange because it doesn't feel that huge, but we are all preparing for another bigger one. Gary called me special from his office to the house here to tell me to get in touch with all of you. we are all trying to stay calm and think through what needs to be done. We were on a river cruise boat when the big one hit. Except Gary was at the place where we were meeting him after our river cruise - he was wiating for us in the car. He said he felt it swaying so much that he thought the car might turn over. Luckily the boat that we were on was arriving at the dock (not the dock where gary was, but one stop before where gary was. ) we got off the boat (Lesa Brett, Dexter Bowen, Me Scott and Michael ) and they said that w that all boats subways trains etc were stoopped. they rushed everone off the pier because of waves and Lesa quickly hailed two cabs and we headed home. Along the way there were thoughsand of people outside of all the buildings many with helmets on - all watching the sky waiting for another quake. We luckily got to the apt after a 15 minute drive through streets with ambulances wailing and crowds of people moving and traffic snarling. we walked into the area office and all hte workers were so happy to see us, but more happy was when Gary walked in. and we are all now safe. Their apt has broken vases tipped dressers, pantty all down, spilled stuff china fallen out of hutch This is the end of the message.

In the time of panic when we got off the boat, it was wonderful to have both Brett and MIchael who spoke japanese as we had to split up and get into two taxi cabs - in case we got separated or something worse happened. It was HUGE when Gary walked in because he had been on the island of Odiva (waiting for us to arrive on the boat) and once we called him (and got through another blessing) he jumped in his car and drove home as fast as he could and got here without incident in the horrible traffic. The church area workers are all gathered in the church offices and cannot leave to go home because of no transportation.

Oh my word it just keeps shaking. The earthquale is continuing - it's weird because it has been just a long series of shakings. Just sit here and feel it rock and roll but nothing as big as the first one that shook the whole apartment apart. The TV is going next to me (I'm on the lower floor of gary and Lesa's two floor apartment) I'm sitting here alone on Kyle's computer and waiting for someone to come and tell me we're evacuating. I think everyone is upstairs wathcing the TV reports. It's hard to know what to do - wherther to leave or stay. I think I better push send and go see what's going on upstairs.

We are just staying in the apartment but

There was china that had fallen out of the China Hutch shattered on the floor, Gary and Lesa's apt is on the fifth floor so they got the worst damage. There is no damage on the lst and second floors of this church apartment building. Gary is working to contact missions so they can call the parents of mssionaries. There is a tsunami in the north area completely immersing the Sendai airpot (where Mike served his mission and Mike Scott and I were going to be traveling to tomorrow (Sat afternoon). I know---you are getting probably more information than we are here.

5 comments:

Ashley & Donnie said...

We are all so glad that you are all ok. We are glad you are their to give Lesa and Gary moral support. Please keep updating us on your blog and facebook.

Arika said...

Oh my goodness Debbie! I can't believe you're actually there with all of this happening but I'm so glad everyone is okay. Please be safe and keep us posted.

Kelli said...

So good to hear from you. What an experience! I'll keep you in my prayers!

Derek, Nikki, and Avrie said...

oh debbie! I can't even imagine what you all must be feeling. Thank you so much for keeping us updated through your blog and facebook. We appreciate it so much! We are continuing to keep you all in our prayers as well as the people of japan. we love you and look forward to hearing its the end of all this chaos.

Mallory said...

debbie - Thanks for posting this experience.
I know you will get some wow pictures of this event.
Keep well. Pam D.