[images of Otsuchi from the Sea Shepherd site @ http://www.seashepherd.org/]
Marley, from her Facebook album
Kids, I have a personal connection to the devastating event in Japan, beyond my love of humanity and the natural world. The beautiful young woman who has shooed my sister's horse for years is in the middle of it right now, in Otsuchi. Marley is a passionate animal activist, and she and her boyfriend had just arrived in Japan to join with the Sea Shepherd in guarding the dolphins, and to continue to work of exposing the massive and unconscionable slaughter of these beautiful and intelligent creatures, as documented in the film The Cove.
They were right in the bay when the earthquake hit and quickly climbed a high nearby hill, from which they watched the entire event.
You can read Scott West's description of what they are going through at the Sea Shepherd site (http://www.seashepherd.org/)
Marley alerted us on facebook yesterday to let us know they are all right. But they have been through a horrifying event, along with so many thousands of humans. It hits close to home when someone you admire and care about is somewhere on the planet, living through hell.
Both Marley and Scott are haunted by a woman's calls for help for hours during the event. She was on top of some floating debris. The young people climbed onto a seawall to try to help her, but the woman could not maneuvre her platform and they had no way to get a line to her. They listened to her cries for help as they tried everything to get help for her. Finally two boats approached the vicinity, then left. They heard the woman's cries no more. They hope she was picked up. She may not have been. Help may have come too late.
They write about debris everywhere, and roads being impassable. They write about the ground undulating beneath their feet, water surging in and out, an angry black roaring giant, gulping up everything in its path. At the bottom of Scott's update, he writes that the current "crop" of dolphins, that had been trapped in the cove for the next slaughter, could not escape during the tsunami, were bashed against the rocks and screamed horribly as they died. He writes, "The souls of the dolphin molesters are without light."
He also writes about the incredible warmth and kindness of the Japanese people who, having lost everything and themselves walking through hell, so generously helped them and shared what little there was with them, helping them find a way out of town.
Marley and her boyfriend are now at the airport trying to get home. But it is uncertain when or how flights will happen, when they do. The airports, the planes are all destroyed. They are naturally worried about the nuclear reactor situation.
The thought of the woman's cries, as she floated midst the debris, haunts me. The thought of her plight magnified by the tens of thousands, stuns me. The thought of the nuclear reactor melting down terrifies me. The thought of what it will take to recover from this disaster is daunting. It is like another Hiroshima, another Nagasake.
So much heartbreak. Incalculable loss. And, in the middle of it all, human beings reaching out to help human beings. When the chips are down, as I firmly believe, most people on earth are good and kind.
Come home safe, Marley!