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    Talk to me / Like lovers do

    Okay, you know, I’m a big fan of rain, but enough is enough. This is number 23, for those who are keeping count. There are already 28 dead or missing; it’s supposed to pass us here in Tokyo some time before sunrise. Here’s hoping there are no further casualties.

    Added at 23:54: And now that I pay attention, things are awfully quiet out there. Maybe the worst is past already? From what the news says, Utsunomiya is still getting rain. Doesn’t even look all that windy, though.

    Added on 21 October: This CNN article has the number of dead at 30 and the number of missing at 40; the Nikkei has the numbers at 46 and 42, respectively. As usual, most of the casualties were in Western Japan, where the jagged landscape makes landslides and the flooding of valleys an ever-present danger. And then there are the high waves and flying objects from the wind to factor in. Atsushi’s fine; his city didn’t get hit this time, but in addition to the 88 dead and missing, there were 300 injured, and no one’s begun to count the property damage and agricultural losses. They’re bound to be high, especially in places such as Ehime Prefecture, which has taken it on the chin more than once this season.

    This typhoon and the one that came through Tokyo a few weeks ago have not only been unusually strong, they’ve also been lastingly unpleasant: Neither was followed by the usual clear weather you get after a typhoon. “Probably because there’s another one in line,” everyone jokes. But we can still joke because Tokyo hasn’t had much damage or injury.

    Added on 22 October: It feels a bit unseemly to keep posting updated casualty counts, as if one were keeping score at a baseball game, but since Simon World kindly linked this post, those who are interested in what we can only hope is the final word can go to the English Asahi : 65 dead and 21 missing. That’s the worst for any single storm since 1979. And as the article points out, a lot of the soil was saturated practically to liquefaction by previous storms, so landslides were even worse this time than they have been before this year. It reminds you how fragile our infrastructure is when nature decides to play rough…though on the other hand, feats such as the rescue of a bunch of bus passengers, who sat on top of their vehicle as the water rose, remind you how fortunate we are to live in a world with such resilient systems to respond to disasters. The sun is out in Tokyo today, at least, so let’s hope there will be some respite before anyone gets hammered again. It’s not yet the end of typhoon season.

    2 Responses to “Talk to me / Like lovers do”

    1. Simon World says:

      Asia by Blog

      Asia by Blog is a twice weekly feature, posted on Monday and Thursday, providing links to Asian blogs and their views on the news in this fascinating region. Please send me an email if you would like to be notified of new editions. Previous editions ca…

    2. Simon’s E. Asia Briefing: 2004-10-27

      The following is a digest of highlights from the past month’s Asia by Blog series over at simonworld.mu.nu. The round-up has four key areas of focus: China, Taiwan & Hong Kong (Politics, Economy & lifestyle, History sport & culture, Information), Korea…