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16 February 2005 @ 08:22 pm
Ok, so being the bad person that I am, I haven't posted in awhile..... Some of you know that I went to a Mardi Gras party in Utsunomia last thursday. It was alot of fun and I really enjoyed myself but since I was having so much fun, I missed the last train back to Kanuma (for the record, it leaves insanely early at 10:45). Instead, I spent the night at Patricia's place (she's the captain of the soccer team) and was planning on getting an early train back in the morning. Well, that went pretty much as planned, I caught a 9:50 train (after taking half an hour on the bus to get to the station so don't tell me that isn't early) and I was on my way home. That's where the trouble starts. Normally, it takes about 14 minutes from Uts to Kanuma, this time something went wrong. Just outside of Tsuruta (the only station between home and Uts) the train hit something. I was sitting in the last car so I didn't see anything except for the clouds of dust billowing around the train as we came to a stop after this sickening crunch. We were in the middle of nowhere it seemed. It took awhile for the aid cars and fire trucks to get to us. As we were sitting there they made some announcements in japanese but I got the general gist of what had happened by listening to a conversation between a couple of foreigners that were going to Nikko and a very nice japanese man who was translating for them. It turns out that we had hit a car and the front of the train had ridden up directly over the car and pushed it almost 200 meters down the track. I found out later from the news that there had been a family of four in the car, on their way to a local shrine. They were crossing the tracks in a place where vehicular crossings are banned (though most of the locals use it as a shortcut). There is a band of trees and brush between this road and the train when it comes from Uts so no one in the car could see the train and the conductor couldn't see the car. Everyone in the car was killed, no one in the train was hurt (though if we hadn't hit the car directly in the middle it could have easily tipped us off the tracks, at that point they were raised above the surrounding fields).

So you can see why I never want to be in that situation again (not that I have any control over it). I wasn't scared at the time, it happened so fast, but afterwards, thinking of how much worse it could have been...
Current Mood: sad, yet grateful
16 February 2005 @ 08:43 pm
You shouldn't be able to see your breath inside a school building! This is my firm belief, but I was able to all day today. It snowed! At least 2 inches, starting before I got up at 7 and stopping at 2:30, very pretty but very cold! (there was also an earthquake last night, at around 5 am, but nothing fell over, it just woke me up). Not much else to say, final exams for the year are coming up next week and then I have to decide what we'll do in OC class for the last month or so (the school year in japan ends at the end of March, graduation is the first of March).
Current Mood: icicle