ROAD vol.11 Evacuees' Short Comments
by Voices from the Field Admin - Sunday, 24 February 2013, 09:23 PM



Read the prologue to the evacuees' comments listed below

Whenever we act up in temporary housing, we are scolded. I have two older brothers, and I quarrel with one of them a lot of the time. Anyway, I have to do an independent project during summer vacation, but I haven't decided my theme yet. What would be good?  (Elementary school boy, Kesennuma, July 31, 2011)

We are not allowed in the swimming pool because of radiation concerns. I want to swim in cold water. I even prefer ice-cold water to hot water for the ashiyu. Please put some ice in the ashiyu tub. You know, I want to be a comic artist. I really like to draw pictures.
(Elementary school girl, Yamamoto, Aug. 15, 2011)

Even today, my mother is working. I wish we had money. On the 17th and 18th, we are planning to go to Disneyland. Ah, I'm so excited I can't sleep at night. (Elementary school girl, Yamamoto, Aug. 15, 2011)

I spend my daytime walking my dog and such. My husband is taking a walk around here right now. Actually, the dog belongs to my daughter, but she has gone to Tokyo, so now we take care of it. It was tough when we were staying at the evacuation center because we had to keep the dog in the car. It is a lot better now because we can stay together. His name is Chocolat and he’s a miniature dog. (A woman in her 70s, Miharucho, Sep. 11, 2011)

When we lived in Tomioka, we were growing flowers and vegetables for the market. Now I don’t have any more motivation to grow anything. I feel so bad that all my bantams, guinea hens and pheasants died. My husband and I had our golden anniversary, that’s our 50th wedding anniversary. We would have gone on holiday but we couldn’t. (A woman in her 70s, Miharucho, Sep. 11, 2011)

I have a dog and we go for a walk every day.  Her name is Kaede - my niece named her. Without her, I would not go for walks, so I appreciate that she is with us. All I can do at home is nothing but watch TV. I used to dance and karaoke when I lived in Tomioka. (A woman in her 60s, Koriyama, Sep. 17, 2011)

I had two dogs and four cats. All of the cats died and one of the dogs which I kept in my house died. The other was kept outside without a chain. As soon as the tsunami came, it must have run away toward the mountain. (A woman in her 50's, Yamamoto, Sep. 1, 2011)

When I was staying in the evacuation center, there was an old woman whose dog had been taken away (because dogs were not allowed) and I watched as she gradually developed dementia. At that time I couldn't sleep well and I lost 6kg. Now my weight has finally come back, and I am even enjoying applying make-up. (A woman in her 70's, Yamamoto, Sep. 2, 2011)

I have a dog and a cat. My next-door neighbor complains that my cat is noisy. It can't be helped - it is just an animal. (A woman in her 70's, Yamamoto, Aug. 31, 2011)

As I live alone, I have nothing to talk about and I forget things easily. I have trouble remembering but at least I have somebody I know here. … I have broken my arm. It’s healed now, but I feel pain in the winter.(A woman in her 60s, Rikuzentakata, Aug. 30, 2011) 

Since there is no function for reheating the bath at this temporary housing complex, it would be hard for me when winter comes.(A woman in her 60s, Yamamoto, Aug. 31, 2011)


I have a grandchild who will be coming home soon. He is a really naughty boy. I tell him to do homework but he doesn’t listen to me. … I feel uneasy that the salon (community center) will be closed in the winter. I have come here for ashiyu many times. (A woman in her 70s, Rikuzentakata, Sep. 5, 2011)