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10 years ago – Tohoku earthquake and tsunami – slideshow

10 years ago, a tremendous earthquake struck the eastern coastline of northern Japan, triggering a tsunami that knocked out the Fukushima nuclear power station and tossing ships, busses, cars and entire houses around like matchwood. Over 15,000 people died, including over 2,500 whose bodies were never recovered, a fact which causes their relatives much unassuaged pain.

March 9th, 2021, an aftershock from that 2011 earthquake rocked Fukushima and surrounding areas. It caused some damage, including knocking over an altar and shrine a parent had put up in his house to honour his daughter who died in the disaster.

It was the most powerful earthquake ever recorded in Japan, and the fourth most powerful earthquake in the world since modern record-keeping began in 1900. The earthquake triggered powerful tsunami waves that may have reached heights of up to 40.5 meters (133 ft) in Miyako in Tōhoku’s Iwate Prefecture, and which, in the Sendai area, traveled at 700 km/h (435 mph) and up to 10 km (6 mi) inland. Residents of Sendai had only eight to ten minutes of warning, and more than a hundred evacuation sites were washed away. The tsunami swept the Japanese mainland and killed over 15,000 people… The latest report from the Japanese National Police Agency report confirms 15,899 deaths.

2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami | Wikipedia has a slideshow of photos that capture the tragedy.

Van Gogh – in his own words

Wow! I never knew. Always imagined him a sad and rather despondent man. His letters belie that.

“If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint’, then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.”

Listen to your favourite books and give your eyes a rest

I’m on a Trollope binge at the moment, and now reading “Phineas Redux“, which is #3 in the series (after “Can You Forgive Her?”, Phineas Finn”, “The Eustace Diamonds”, and followed by 2 more) . I just bought my Black Friday Audible membership which is just £3.99 per month for 4 months. After your first free book per month (I chose as my book a 29-hour monster because I really want to get my money’s worth!), you have to pay for each Audible title you download. There’s a free app for your smartphone or tablet and you can even listen from your Mac or Pc.

As I get older, I find reading, which has been a lifelong enjoyment, less enjoyable than it used to be, and I prefer listening. Audible is a great way to buy audiobooks.  This email from Amazon got my attention:

From Friday 16th November, check out the fantastic Audible Black Friday membership offer: 50% off for 4 months!

New customers signing up to Audible via this offer will pay £3.99 per month for 4 months, instead of the regular £7.99 per month. Audible membership includes a credit every month, applicable to any audiobook, regardless of price or length. The books are yours to keep for life, even if you cancel. With the world’s largest section of titles to choose from, there’s something for everyone. Please note, the offer ends 14 December.

Ok, gotta go: Phineas has just written a letter to a woman friend saying he’s been shot at in defending her honour and feeling all proud of himself, and now he’s been attacked by the gutter press and his relationship to the woman is now public knowledge! What’s he going to do? How will he revenge himself on that dastardly newspaper editor, Quintus Slide!

Where did you go today?

I’m on holiday. Here’s where I went today, a journey of the heart, as well as the mind. I found beauty that needs no words to introduce it. Indeed, no words can do it justice. Enjoy.

  1. Did you know the U20’s women’s soccer World Cup is now in progress? Check’em out:
  2. Here’s a cracker from a few years ago:
  3. Picture: Portrait of a Young Girl by Pietro Antonio Rotari
  4. The music starts but the camera shows you scenes around and in the concert area before and during the concert, before zooming in on the musicians on stage. I found the response of the crowd very moving. A commenter noted that the tabla player is the father of Zakir Hussein, also a tabla player, who has played often with John McLaughlin and Shakti.
  5. 15 years later, Ravi Shankar played at the Carnegie Hall with Zakir Hussein on tabla. (Actual performance starts at 12:28 mark.) Words fail me.
  6. Concert for George Harrison, 1 year after his death.

Best wishes for 2017

Quote of the week

Check zerohedge, they have an article about how the NGOs are bringing in the migrants from N Africa. Includes names of ships. It may be inferred that countries are becoming irrelevant and politics are a stage game.

The Zerohedge article referred to: Something Strange is Happening in the Mediterranean

Thought for the day


Prem Rawat

Quote of the day

First, a map. (Click for a larger version to get the full impact.)

Quote of the day.

From a quick look at Japanese TV last night and this morning, this seems to be all too true here as well (click for a larger version).

Thought for the Day


Quote of the day

At my age, I can gauge my life expectancy by the number of Presidential elections ahead of me. How many more of these must I endure after this one? I figure three. I might get four. This is a depressing way to measure your time remaining. But it does make an actuarially premature death look more appealing.

Gary North