One thing that especially strikes me about being here is just how incredibly beautiful it is: the rugged, rocky coastline with fjord-like inlets, the tree-covered hills, the clear skies, and the birds. The areas where tsunami came are relatively small, but unfortunately, the tsunami came to the flat areas right on the coast, where most of the people are living--right up the inlets and into the villages.
Yesterday I was sitting under a cherry tree, playing my cello for the outdoor café we set up at one of the temporary housing facilities. I admired the trees on the mountain, and watched a couple of large birds soaring against the backdrop of the clear blue sky. If I turned around, I could see the ocean, calm and sparkling in the sunlight--behind a swath of destroyed houses and a huge mound of trash. In other places we visited, a completely undamaged house could be right next to an empty foundation of another house. Some places sunflowers are growing out of the wrecks of houses.
|Also Yamada: surviving house next to destroyed houses|
|Akamae: trash heaps being sorted. The picture just doesn't do justice to the magnitude of the trash pile...|
|Akamae: destroyed houses, green hills|
|First café location: Taro|
|Playing for other relief workers after delivering children's tables and chairs to a shelter in Yamada. The chairs are very sturdy. :)|
|This café location was in Miyako, only a couple of blocks from where we're staying.|
|Some people listened from inside their apartments. One such person came out at the end and gave us a melon to thank us for the music.|
|This mother and daughter stayed for the whole afternoon.|
|At this café, I talked about music with some of the children. They even chose a piece for me to play. :)|
|The aforementioned location with the cherry tree, Akamae|
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good--his steadfast love endures forever.