After the earthquake, Tokyo is definitely not the same any more. Many of my friends have left, and even I’m thinking about leaving myself too.
But most of the Japanese are staying exactly where they are, stubbornly refusing to bulge. They remind me of that Jack Russell terrier I met on the street outside my building the other day.
It was another hot summer day, and I was moving around like a lizard, just to preserve energy. Suddenly I saw this adorable dog down on all four, wouldn’t move an inch, and the owner was trying to drag him up and away at the other end of the long leash. It was a power struggle all right, or rather, a stalemate in fact.
And the sight made me smile, oh, can you imagine a smiling lizard now?
I bent down to talk to the dog, and asked the owner if the dog was too tired or too thirsty because of the damn heat. But he just shook his head and smiled embarrassingly, while the dog finally got up and greeted me.
We played for a while, me and the dog, I mean. And then I stood up to leave, thinking the owner wouldn’t have any trouble to take the dog home now. But as soon as the owner started to lead the dog away, the dog hit the ground all four again, refusing to move. It was so funny and I laughed out loud.
So the owner finally told me the dog was demanding to go to the park in the other direction. Well, guess who won the battle of will in the end?
As I watched the happy little dog leading the reluctant owner to the park, I was thinking to myself, hey, that dog was as stubborn as all the Japanese people here in Tokyo, who stay at their posts and keep on doing whatever they need to do, earthquake or not.
And their stubbornness makes me smile too.