Japanese Language Blog

Mother Nature is Angry Posted by on Jul 23, 2012 in Uncategorized


You know what? Let's use a different road to get there.

As I mentioned last month, the 梅雨 (つゆ/rainy season) runs from late 5月 (ごがつ/May) to mid-late 7月 (しちがつ/July), depending on the area that you live in. As scheduled, the 雨 (あめ/rain) hit during that time, but 今年 (ことし/this year) there was a lot more than average.

In fact, many areas received more 雨 in a few days than they usually get for the MONTH. For example, my area in 南九州 (みなみきゅうしゅう/South Kyushu), 鹿児島 (かごしま/Kagoshima), received a whole month’s worth of 雨 in about 5 days in 6月 (ろくがつ/June). Since 6月 is *already* in the middle of 梅雨, it’s hard to believe you can get so much more 雨 in a few days (about 700mm I believe), but that’s how much we got in 5 days of 大雨 (おおあめ/heavy rain). Every morning we were greeted by announcements on the news telling us to watch out for 洪水 (こうずい/floods) and 土砂崩れ (どしゃくずれ/landslides) due to the 大雨.


I could have sworn there was a bridge somewhere around here...

We thought it was finished when 7月 came around. Two days of sun in a row and we let our guard down, thinking the worst was over. My wife and I decided to take a little two day drive out of the city a week ago, to the region of 阿蘇 (あそ/Aso), in 熊本県 (くまもとけん/Kumamoto Prefecture), but Mother Nature let me know I was being too optimistic. Another round of 大雨 came and parts of 熊本県 (especially 阿蘇), 大分県 (おおいたけん/Oita Prefecture), 佐賀県 (さがけん/Saga Prefecture) and 福岡県 (ふくおかけん/Fukuoka Prefecture) had dozens of 洪水 and literally hundreds of 土砂崩れ  (from tiny to large) which caused almost 30 deaths. Thankfully, we missed the worst of it, but the evidence was all around us, as evidenced by the pictures I included.

The 日本人 (にほんじん/Japanese people) are resilient though, and as soon as the rain slowed down, whole neighborhoods were out helping each other clean up. The community spirit in Japan is really unmatched.

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