What’s scarier? A tornado, an earthquake or a tsunami? They’re all pretty equal, but in my eyes, the thought of a tsunami alone is simply bone-chilling. As if one of these natural disasters isn’t scary enough, what’s even scarier is that an earthquake and a tsunami hit Japan yesterday.
Watching scenes of those endless white waves, snaking across the water and then crashing into land is as creepy as it is heart-wrenching. Not to mention the footage of buildings and vehicles becoming effortlessly unglued from the earth by muddied and debris-laden waters. And those clips they keep playing on the news of boats trying to escape a ghostly whirlpool in the middle of the ocean. Heck, the closest thing to a whirlpool I’ve ever encountered is the dishwasher. I couldn’t imagine being in such a situation.
Events like these hit closer to home when you know people who could actually be impacted by the devastation. And while we don’t have family or friends in Japan, I’m originally from Guam and have countless aunts, uncles, cousins, godparents and a grandmother on Guam and Hawaii. Guam, for those of you who may not know, is a beautiful little island in the Pacific that measures 30 miles long at its longest point and 4 miles wide at its shortest point. It’s prone to earthquakes due to its location on the edge of the Pacific Plate and the Philippine Sea Plate. It’s also a popular destination for Japanese tourists. In fact, a good way to think about it is this: Guam is to Japan what Hawaii is to the continental U.S.
Photo courtesy of my dad, Leo Sarusal
Photo courtesy of my dad, Leo Sarusal.
So when I first heard of the news this morning on the Today Show, I immediately took to Facebook to check my News Feed for updates from my family members. Being a big fan of social media, I am oh-so thankful for outlets like Facebook and Twitter that allow us to connect to loved ones who are thousands of miles away. And I’m happy to report that all is well. While many people had to evacuate and move to higher ground, both Guam and Hawaii were not affected by the tsunami. Sigh of relief!
In all, today just made me grateful and a little emotional for things that we do have. Food, shelter, water. And most importantly, each other. Sending thoughts, prayers, well wishes, positive vibes and everything that is good out to those in Japan tonight.