The Tsunami Gate

Tsunami gate in Iwate, 1989

Tsunami gate in Iwate, 1989

Like everyone else, I’ve been following the news from Japan with dismay and sadness. In 1989, I traveled to northeast Honshu, the part of Japan most affected by the earthquake and tsunami. Iwate, the province where this photograph was taken, was considered remote and fairly exotic back in the 1980s, even by Tokyo-ites. I took this shot of a tsunami gate in a small town on the coast where the major industry was processing seaweed for culinary purposes. At that time, I couldn’t imagine a wave so large that this imposing gate would be needed. Now having read reports that the tsunami wave was more than 30 feet high, I wonder if this little gate helped at all.

My prayers go out to the survivors, as they struggle to make it through each day.

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