Kokonatsu wo shikkari tsugan de! – taifu juhachi wa kimasu  

Friday, 9 October 2009

It’s been a bit drafty this week. Typhoon 18 – named Melor from the Malay word for jasmine – hit the mainland of Japan on Wednesday, carving a path of destruction across central Honshu before passing to the west of Tokyo yesterday. Tropical storms and typhoons are a fact of life here, but it’s comparatively rare that they make landfall. Most skirt by the coast, bringing lashing rain and strong winds in their wake but little in the way of destruction. Things have been a bit different this week.

Some of the more rural and coastal communities across the central region were quite badly damaged by winds gusting up to 123 mph and torrential rain that caused flooding and the risk of landslide – another natural hazard to be found here, along with earthquakes, volcanoes, tropical storms and Godzilla. Tokyo didn’t fare too badly, in fact there were some fringe benefits: Big M’s part-time workplace was closed so she had an unexpected day off. Most of the train services in the Tokyo area were disrupted, so Y had a relaxing half-day holiday and little M’s school was also closed.

Unfortunately, there were no typhoons on the internet and so your humble scribe remained shackled to the grindstone, as usual.

In terms of damage to the Beerhound homestead, nothing to report. Although a couple of the pot plants in my balcony garden took a dive, as did my basil, and my poor runner beans had their stakes blown down. In fact, I discovered the whole framework hanging over the balcony into next door, with just one tenacious bean plant stopping the whole thing disappearing over the side. He’s since been awarded the Vegetable Cross for outstanding fortitude.

If you say it slowly, you can probably work out the title for this post…clue: it involves coconuts and strong winds.

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