I had left Tokyo yesterday and headed for Fukushima to pick up a car from Zun san again , I was on a mission to go to Onagawa in Miyagi prefecture. When I ran though there in June I meet 2 Suzuki sans who I got introduced to though MIyuki Hatanaka who had showed us around another island which had been smashed by the Tsunami to and she is working hard at to get back to normal.
When we first meet Suzuki san I had asked about donating and what it would be used for . He said that the thing most wanted by the locals is something fun to do, Let their hair down which is when the Gariki Stock Music Fest popped up, They had run it last year to boost everyone out of the hard times and where doing it again this year. I knew straight away that that was what I wanted to donate to. Music is one of the best way to get everyone happy . I asked when it was and it worked out perfect and to be a week after I finished my run so I could also go myself and had hoped to be able to do the donation in front of everyone as it was for them.
When I arrived it was in full go with traditional dancing going on, Lots of drums and people dancing which was great to see. Lots of smiles all around. Even if it was raining a little bit you wouldn’t have known by looking around.
Lots of artist had given their time to and come up from all over Japan which is great too, I was hoping the donation of 200,ooo Yen about $2500 could help out with next years costs of getting it going again.
Everything from singers to dance groups which made it fun for everyone here.
Local guy here made this pic up , lots of different meanings in it.
These little flags hang everywhere with wish and good luck notes written on them right around the ground.
Lots of stores selling all kinds of things made by the locals . Awesome.
Then it was time for us to get up on the stage and do the presentation, So great to be bale to chat with the locals and tell them what we did, some of them might have seen us run past but most didnt know what we did so I took a mo to explain and it made me feel great, Everyone smiled and chapped to thank us for doing it but I was straight back saying that I got so much power from them , The way that everyone is looking forward and building new ways to go about things. So positive which the world can learn from. I thank everyone and wish you all the best for the future.
Then the bands were back on and everyone danced around. The staff were awesome, so happy and welcomed me so much, I will be back to see you again after India. Thankyou for letting us in to do the presentation and meet you all. Saiko tanoshikata. ( it was great fun)
On the way home I took these shots to show you again what was the town, You can see a brown building on the hill here in front of the car well the wave 20m went up and over that , everyone was up there and some people were taken when it came though. Amazing to see when you look down from there, it is damn high .
The ground has dropped about 1m here and they are going to build the whole area up first before rebuilding. Which could take around 5 yrs i was told.
So very sad to see and lots of tourist coming to look and I just hope they can meet a few locals and get some of their amazing power to take home with them.
I had the best day and it feels great to be able to give a little donation which everyone who was involved in our run had put in . This is one of the great parts of the whole experience, to see the smiles . I love it so much, makes the running part easier for next time.
I then headed all the way back to Listel to sleep in the back of the van as I forgot to let the team know I would be home.
Thanks so much to Gariki Stock Fest , Suzuki san’s and Onagawa Town. Ganbarou!!!