While the world watches Japan struggle to overcome the effects of a deadly tsunami, earthquakes and nuclear radiation leaks, Junko Nakayama watches more closely than most.
Nakayama, trainer for the La Crescenta Valley High School baseball team, said a cousin is stuck in Tsukuba, 120 miles from the Fukushima nuclear plant where high levels of radiation have forced evacuations. Nakayama’s parents are in her home town of Hachinohe, a northern port city where residents are waiting out food and supply shortages.
“My cousin wants to come home, but there is no transportation,” Nakayama said. “The bullet train has stopped, and no cars are coming through.”
The tsunami wiped out schools and businesses in Hachinohe, Nakayama said, “but the majority of the city was fine.”
She said her parents are doing errands on foot because gasoline supplies are dwindling. Food supplies are, too, but Nakayama said her mother is prepared.
“She’s always overstocked,” Nakayama said. “I told her, ‘You can clean out your freezer.’”