Sunday, March 13, 2011

Japan, My homeland

Thanks to all who are concerned about my family in Japan. Just spoke with my dad. My cousin is all right. She is in Sendai, near the epicenter and was lucky. My brother`s family is in Tokyo and are OK. Niece and nephew are scared and were sleeping fully clothed with helmets and their shoes right next to them.

The word from my family is Miyagi Prefecture was hit the hardest with estimates of 10,000 killed. Most passed because of drowning. They did not expect the Tsunami to go as far inland as it did. At this time, there is a calm, general demeanor with the government stepping in and taking care of the people. No looting and people have communication with temp cell towers being put up. Electricity is not happening or is sporadic.

I watch, listen and read about what`s happening in my homeland and can`t help but think how blessed I am to wake up every day in my home in Boulder, CO. I am lucky and have nothing to complain about. This perspective is what grounds me to live the best possible life. I`m crossing my fingers and toes for my people in Japan.

My dad reminded me that the Japanese have a deep, unified sense of community and events such as this, while tragic, are when the Japanese inner-warrior shines through. He also feels CNN is super dramatic:)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Is There Hope For Haiti?

By: Yoshi Aono

On the one year anniversary of the Haitian Earthquake I wonder how the country is progressing in their recovery. Are the multi-millions of dollars that were sent for aid and reconstruction making a significant impact? I ask myself is there really Hope for Haiti?

There`s been political unrest, the rainy season, a Cholera outbreak and reconstruction has stalled with millions of people still living in tents or under tarps. I`ve seen the nastiness down there on two separate trips. It`s not pretty, but there is hope for the people due to the human spirit. Life is not abundant as in the US, but family`s still co-exist and children are being taken care of and fed. They are survivors.

I`ve come across some great organizations over the years. Their intentions are true and they are getting things accomplished, albeit in increments. Organizations such as Off the Mat and Into the World are gearing up for a big grassroots campaign in 2011. They have the opportunity to make sustainable impact. People must realize that Haiti is a country which has always been helped. They expect the aid and support from the outside and I hope to see these organizations come in and empower the people to make it on their own.

I wake up every day, grateful that I was born into my family and grateful that I live in a beautiful place in Colorado. After seeing people`s existence in Haiti, you can`t help but gain some perspective and realize how lucky we all are. Is it a grand master plan, or just fate that we are born into our situation?

Perspective is everything and whenever you feel like things are tough, remember the millions of people that were born into their situation in Haiti.