"" Writer's Wanderings: Tokyo - The Typhoon

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Tokyo - The Typhoon

Nearing the end of our visit it was time for the grandkids to start school. All of a sudden we kept hearing a buzz about a typhoon. While I couldn't understand all that the news had to say, the weather pictures were quite clear. The track of the typhoon was heading dead on for Tokyo.

Now I was a little concerned. When a hurricane heads for Florida you batten down the hatches so to speak and make sure windows are boarded up, etc. It was not the case here. While there was the threat of school closing and activities being cancelled, there didn't seem to be any other concern other than taking notice of whether there might be some flooding.

We awoke early enough on that Monday to walk the kids to school. By the time they were dressed and about ready to go out the door, the email came through from the International School. Cancelled!
My son delivered the message to the kids. Two cheered. The other one threw his hands in the air.

"What?!" he said. "I even put on deodorant!"

It didn't take long for them to change out of uniforms and get comfy with electronics since it was beginning to rain. The wind kicked up a little and my son said that was probably going to be it. That typhoons were overrated and quite common this time of year. Not too different from the attitude my Florida son has about hurricanes. Everyone always predicts the worst and it usually doesn't turn out that badly.

I watched the skies and waited for dark clouds and thunder and lightning. It never really looked dire although there were some times of heavy rain. According to the weather apps it appeared the typhoon's worst would be over in the early afternoon. With that in mind, my son planned to go into work and we took the kids by taxi to the nearby mall where there is a cinema.

We enjoyed the afternoon viewing of Ghostbusters and then headed from the cinema to go back inside the mall. It was a short walk but outside and down some steps. We no sooner took the first step down and a huge gust of wind turned all our umbrellas inside out. We scurried down steps and under cover but were fairly wet by the time we made it. The wind was really whipping around. The typhoon was not done yet.

Note the neat trays that held 2 drinks and popcorn
and fit into the cup holder.
When it became obvious after some time walking in the mall and getting a Starbucks break that we were not going to be able to walk home (especially without umbrellas) we looked for a taxi stand. Thankfully there was one undercover and plenty of taxis to be had. Our granddaughter gave the driver the address and we headed back out into the weather.

The trip home was not bad. Rainy but not treacherous. We would later learn that the typhoon had hit some other areas of Japan a lot harder. But still, the damage and flooding we saw on the news didn't look much worse than a wicked summer storm back home. Just know that all weathermen and news reporters seem to be the same. Their reporting was just as intense as back home, standing in the rain and wind, showing pictures of toppled trees and downed power lines. The reporting didn't really need translation.

Just one footnote. The typhoons aren't named in Japan so I don't know where the names come from in the US news reports. They just count them there. This was #10 and 11 was forming out over the ocean. Their season would be just a little longer.

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