Day 2, Enroute to Date City

With a long flight from the U.S. to Tokyo behind us, a nights stroll through the streets to try some local cuisine, another day of preparation and of course that first couple restless nights sleep we all know so well when traversing timezones and we’re off to Date City today.

In a few hours we’ll board a train to travel north to a place violently devastated by the triad disaster which struck Japan on March 11, 2011. Towns and people along the coast were instantly stripped of their landscapes, buildings, roads and livelihoods by an earthquake and the tsunami that followed in it’s wake. The third element of the disaster, most would argue the worst — contamination from radiation released by the failure of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. We’ll spend the afternoon exploring Fukashima City and the next day touring some of the physically marked areas of devastation along the coast of Soma City, Minamisoma City and end the day in the Tsukidate area of Date minamisomaphotosjpg-4aeea6d215a4248eCity and the decontamination orchard area Hana Kobo.

All-in-all a grim reminder of why we’re here, but we go with optimism knowing we have something to offer, something that can possibly help speed the recovery of this vital region.

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1 Comment

by | April 5, 2013 · 2:21 pm

One response to “Day 2, Enroute to Date City

  1. Since we were only in Tokyo for one day and two nights, we made the most of it. Last night, we took the subway (nothing like taking public transportation to get a real sense of the people) to Shibuya, literally the busiest intersection in the world. We watched out the window of Starbucks. All the traffic stops at the same time and thousands of people cross in every direction. It was pretty amazing and made Time Square look relaxed. The people here all seem to be young and beautiful. We ate in a non-tourist type restaurant and small dishes of food kept appearing at our table. We followed that with a very long walk in the “5th Avenue” section of Tokyo.

    Now, as Gene said, we are heading North and will get an entirely different view of Japan. Starting Monday, we will really dig into our Smarter City project.

    Having three Japanese colleagues on our team will make our work go more smoothly. They have already done a terrific job of understanding the situation and laying some of the ground work.

    The IBM Japan building in Tokyo was very impressive. Beautiful, modern building, well marked with Smarter Planet branding/