The Japanese has long been known for their discipline, excellent manners and technology. During my 10-day visit in Japan last year, I get to see and experience their way of life firsthand. Always courteous, orderly and on time. Garbage bins are scarce in cities and streets but yet, it was difficult to find even a piece of litter anywhere. On the elevator, I saw people automatically keeping to the side (usually left) so that they don’t block other users’ way. By the second day in Japan, I found myself following their example too.
I was also especially impressed with their public transportation systems – their trains were always on time and the networks and routes were complicated but systematic. Although sometimes the trains were crowded during peak hours, I have never seen one single person being pushed when going on or off a train. The ticketing machines were efficient and fast too. Talking about the machines, almost everything speaks and interacts with human users in Japan. Although I couldn’t understand a word but it shows how well-advanced the Japanese are with their technology.
The recent earthquake (11 March 2011) in Northern Japan was the strongest to ever hit Japan and 5000 times stronger than the one in Christchurch. To add insult to injury, a massive tsunami followed soon after and swept away the entire city of Natori in Sendai – including houses, cars, farms and thousands of its residents. The quake was so strong it even shook the city of Tokyo violently although its hundreds of kilometres away.
During such disastrous moments, still the Japanese did not fail to inspire. The 8.9 magnitude earthquake shook numerous skyscrapers in Tokyo yet none of them fell. None. Nadda. Nil. I think that is just amazing. The number of casualties would be significantly more if not for their excellent technology in building construction design.
The Japanese were hit by a string of deadly disasters but yet they did not behave disastrously. No running hysterically. No pushing their way through to get aid. No jumping queues to use the telephones or toilets.
Just no dramas.
Everything was still orderly. They even kept to the “keep to the side while on elevator” rule when sitting on stairs, stranded. These are earthquake victims we are talking about. Truly an excellent example of the Japanese spirit and civilisation. My highest salutations.
(I can only imagine if a disaster of this scale struck Malaysia. Oh the chaos…..)