Sunday, October 13, 2019

Substituting for Susan on Sunday

Annamaria apologizes:

Actually, there is NO substitute for Susan!  She is 100% sui generis.  Spectacularly so.  She would be here today if she could, but she cannot post this week.  You may already understand why.  If you have been hiding out from the news (and who would blame you?), you may not have heard that the worst typhoon in SIX DECADES hit Tokyo over Friday/Saturday.  Susan is safe.  Here are the reports, she sent to us, her blogmates.  I am including some pictures from my trip of a lifetime with her one year ago:

...some of you may have seen the news that a category five typhoon just hit Tokyo. I am not in Tokyo this weekend. Instead, I am in the hinterlands. I was planning to hike, and ended up stuck in the teeth of the typhoon. Fortunately, it has now passed over and my phone does have service. Negatively, I cannot get to the blog to post (see: typhoon). There is flooding and landslides and all kinds of disaster around me but the hotel is warm and dry and I am safe.

To add to the report: everyone I know in Tokyo is safe, though the rain is torrential.

Out here in Hachioji (2.5 hours northwest of central Tokyo) there are evacuation, landslide, and flooding conditions. The rivers are bursting their banks, though thankfully the rain has stopped now and the storm has passed  

   Government alerts have been going off every five minutes, Which makes for some hilarity when you’re on the bus with 20 other people being evacuated from the train station after service stops and everyone’s phone starts jangling simultaneously with the emergency alert signal. Yep. Thanks. We figured it out  

Curiously, JR East ( the rail Company) not only refused to charge us and refunded everyone’s train tickets for the interrupted portion of our travel, But arranged free buses to take us an hour away to one of two safe cities (individual’s choice) where there were hotels available. I am highly impressed. this is particularly true because I was the only non-Japanese person on the train, meaning this is standard operating procedure and not simply something they did for tourists. 

The images coming out of Japan are startling. I don’t know how many are reaching the west, but the country is prepared and seems to be doing as well as possible in terms of preparation and response. 

All safe here. Have fun at Bouchercon!


  1. Susan, could you identify the pic w/ the row of ojizo?
    I have a fondness for them & this picture is particularly whimsical. Thanks.

    1. I can! Those are small statues on sale in a shop window on Koyasan. The shop sells calligraphy (shodo) supplies as well as religious objects. The O-Jizō are one of their few whimsical items.

  2. Well done, Annamarie, and so happy to hear all's well and safe with you, Susan.