Earthquake experience by a visually impaired person(視覚障害者と地震)


Today we brought you an interview with a visually impaired person from Sudan. Mohamed Omar Abdin, the head director of CAPEDS (Committee for Assisting and Promoting Education of the Disabled in Sudan). It’s a Japan-based non-profit organization which supports the education for the disabled in Sudan.
In March 2011, right before the 3.11 Earthquake, we welcomed Mai Namiki, CAPEDS secretary general, to our studio and heard about their organization.→ Click!
Then finally we could hear the voice of its representative.

Click the player above and learn about his earthquake experience! He talks in Japanese but Arlene translates his words into Japanese in between. He has studied in UK before but he prefers to speak Japanese than speaking English.

BTW, Abdin’s wife gave birth to a baby right in the middle of the aftershocks. A baby was born on March 25, 2011 but her mother had to be prepared for the delivering right after the earthquake. He’ll tell you about the story of “earthquake, childbirth, lost in translation experienced by the visually impaired”  So don’t miss it next Saturday on July 2!

*CAPEDS’ official website:

YouTube Preview Image

今日は視覚障害を持つスーダン人男性をゲストにお迎えしました。モハメド・オマル・アブディンさん、「スーダン障害者教育支援の会」(CAPEDS)の代表理事を務めています。この”CAPEDS”は、日本を拠点にスーダンの視覚障害者の方々に点字板を送ったり、パソコンの読み上げソフトの使い方の指導、最近では視覚障害者の方々にも可能な”ブラインドサッカー”の普及に努めています。詳しくはこちらをご覧下さい(2011年3月17日放送 ゲスト:CAPEDS 事務局長の並木麻衣さんとのトークです)。


ちなみにアブディンさんには奥様と、お生まれになったばかりのお子さんがいらっしゃいます。「生まれたばかり」・・・つまり震災後の大混乱の時期に、奥様がご出産をご経験されたのです。しかもダンナさんは目の見えないスーダン人です。来週は「震災と出産とLost in Trasrarion」をテーマに、さらに深くお話を掘り下げてお聞きする予定ですので、どうぞお聴き逃しなく!!!!


Fireworks in Tohoku & Dealing with oversized garbage(東北で花火 & 粗大ゴミ処理)


Do you know that the fireworks will be going off on the same day, at the same time in Tohoku? Young Japanese guys in Tokyo are planning to do that involving local people in Tohoku. The project called “Light Up Nippon”. Click a player above and learn more about what it is.

● Light Up Nippon (English page) :

Fireworks will be in the sky above; Yamada-machi, Otsuchi-cho, Kamaishi-shi, Sanriku-cho (Ofunato-shi), Rikuzentakata-shi in Iwate Pref & Iwaki-shi in Fukushima Pref. This project will be held from 7PM on August 11 (Thu) in those towns and cities.

The earthquake induced a mood of self-control among us. But fireworks are originally set off to commemorate the dead so we must not refrain from firework by reason of its floridness.
They’ve been collecting contributions for covering more areas. You can donate online but the page is written only in Japanese. So what non-Japanese speakers can do is to make more people aware of this project. Of course we support this project, too!

この夏、東北で一斉に花火が上がります!「東北を、日本を、花火で、元気に」をスローガンに、8月11日(木)夜7時に東北の各地で同時に花火を打ち上げるプロジェクト「Light Up Nippon(ライト・アップ・ニッポン)」が行われます。

● Light Up Nippon:


より広域でのプロジェクト実施のため、Light Up Nipponでは寄付を募っております。 から「募金申し込み」をクリックして必要事項を記入の上、寄付の手続きをお願いします。またシステムなどの制約により、海外からの寄付を受け付けられない状況だそうで、そのため募金のページは日本語のみとなっています。もし皆さんに外国人のご友人やお知り合いの方がいらしたら、寄付の仕方を丁寧にお教えいただければと思います。



*東京都環境整備公社 家電リサイクル受付センター:03−5296–7200

Then we brought you another useful info. Maybe many foreigners in Japan have been struggling with oversized garbage (sodai-gomi). Click a player above and learn how to deal with large items (from 12’25).

CAUTION: 4 major home appliances, which are air conditioners, TV sets, refrigerators/freezers, and washing machines cannot be picked up as oversize garbage. If you are replacing those items with new ones, ask the store where you are buying the new one to collect the old one. If you only need to dispose of the old one and don’t know where the item was purchased, contact your local authority and ask about an appropriate procedure (residents of 23 wards should contact the Home Appliance Recycling Center).

To dispose of computers, follow instructions on the disposal process given by the manufacturer of your computer. For details about local regulations for garbage categories, collection schedules and recycling systems, contact the garbage collection/recycling authority or department in the ward (or city, town or village) where you reside.

*Home Appliance Recycling Center: (Phone) 03-5296-7200

Tokuhashi took his oversized garbage by taxi to the collection center when he was going to move to another place. Because it took a few days or a week to pick up his garbage. So be sure to apply earlier!

Maya doesn’t have experience of taking out oversized garbage. She just shredded tatami mat or carpet into pieces and threw them out as burnable waste. Also she took apart a small furniture such as a bookshelf and put it in the burnable trash. For a big furniture like sofa, she just posted a little massage board at her apartment, like “Anybody can take it for free!”. Somebody contacted her and came with his/her own truck and picked it up. That’s also a good idea!

We would like to hear your ways of dealing with bulk trashes! 皆さんの”粗大ゴミ体験記” 是非お聞かせくださいね!

Preggy got lost in translation.(異国出産体験記)


We tried to bring you a story in both English and Japanese as much as possible. So if you don’t understand any Japanese, you might have felt that we had a chat in Japanese too much. But I would like you to disregard it or to see how it’s done.


By the way, we had a radio interview with an American woman over the phone. Her name is Leah Dubuc Muega and now she lives in Adachi-ku, located north of the heart of Tokyo. She came to Japan in 2005 and taught English in Yamagata Prefecture, a part of Tohoku area. Then Leah went back home to Michigan to finish college. And she returned to Japan in 2008 and became an English teacher again.
So click the player at the top of this page and listen to her childbirth experience in the country, where her language is not spoken in.

日本の病院は、まだまだ英語が通じないところが多いようです。 そんな国で、彼女は子どもを授かりました。さて、リアさんはどんな行動を取ったのでしょうか。ヒントは”midwife”または”midwifery”です。その答えについては、このページトップにあるプレイヤーで12’25″以降をお聴きくださいね。

Then, here’s a recommendation from Leah. The maternity center where she gave birth at is;
Matsugaoka Birth Center (Nakano-ku, Tokyo)

They have 6 rooms (3 are Japanese-styled, another 3 rooms are Western-styled) and 2 birthing rooms (1 with a pool and 1 with tatami mats). They serve you very healthy and macrobiotic Japanese food. Ms. Sou, the clinic director, can speak English (Midwives can not). She said, “If I had to do again, I would go to the same midwifery clinic.”

And… her husband, who speaks some Japanese,  took care of her very much. He’d been with her all the time during the birth and gentled on Leah’s back. That must be a really, really big help ! An English proverb “Love makes one fit for any work” was proved!



Maya got involved in Leah’s childbearing. Leah wanted to give birth to a baby at her home because she wanted to control the situation of having her baby. She was afraid that she wouldn’t understand Japanese doctors or nurses and everything was going on. So she thought, “If I have birth at my own house, I would understand everything.” So she wanted an English-speaking midwife.
Then she asked Maya to find a midwife or to interpret what a midwifery said and pass those on to Leah. But Maya opposed her idea because she had to have so much responsibility. Moreover her family disagreed with her plan. So Leah decided to a midwifery clinic instead of searching a midwife.

Also Arlene has had a similar experience. When she gave birth to her first baby here in Tokyo about 16 years ago, she knew almost nothing about where hospitals are and how Japanese insurances apply to her case. Her Japanese skills were lower than the current level, so she couldn’t catch a lot of technical terms that doctors and nurses were using. There were no translation service, or nobody told her about it at that time.
Arlene has much experience of getting lost in translation in daily life in Japan, that’s why she provided you some informations regarding medical issues such as and

My Eyes Tokyo wants to help women or those who get lost in translation like this case!
このように、言葉の壁に阻まれて困っている女性の方、それだけでなくいろんな方々に対し、My Eyes Tokyoが力になれるようになれたらと思います!

Cheer up Tohoku by festas!(お祭りで復興支援を!)


Some good news to you from My Eyes Tokyo!

Firstly, the 3 major festivals in Tohoku will be held in this coming summer! Those are “Aomori Nebuta Festival“”Akita Kanto Festival” and “Sendai Tanabata Festival“. All of us have good memories of those festivals so we are very happy to hear that.

Schedules of the festivals are below.
● Aomori Nebuta: August 2 (Tue) – 7 (Sun) 2011.
● Akita Kanto: August 3 (Wed) – 6 (Sat) 2011.
● Sendai Tanabata: August 6 (Sat) – 8 (Mon) 2011.

Wow! You’ll be able to enjoy all of them in the same week! You just have to go!

今週のMy Eyes Tokyoでは、嬉しいお知らせを皆さんにお届けしました。首都圏では行事やイベントが数々中止される中、何と被災地である東北地方では例年通り”3大祭り”が行われるのです!3大祭りとは「青森ねぶた祭り」「秋田竿灯祭り」「仙台七夕祭り」のことで、Team My Eyes Tokyoにも思い入れがあります。



● 青森ねぶた祭り 8月2日(火)〜7日(日)*詳しくはこちら
● 秋田竿灯祭り 8月3日(水)〜6日(土)*詳しくはこちら
● 仙台七夕祭り 8月6日(土)〜8日(月) *詳しくはこちら

Then in Tokyo, the city where we are, the big firework festival will be held as has happened in the past!
Sumidagawa (Sumida River) Firework Festival will be held on August 27 (Sat), about one month later than normal. And you know what? It’s one of the oldest festivals in the world!
It launched in 1733, when fireworks were launched as part of festivals for the dead. The country was in an economic crisis, and the people suffered from famine and disease to a greater degree than normal. Thus, the rituals and celebrations in which the fireworks took part played multiple roles. These were mourning observances for the dead, as well as celebrations of life, and entertainment for the poverty-stricken masses.

So go to see the fireworks! Those will send the positive vibes to Tohoku!



Quakebook and Pray For Japan(世界中の愛、被災地へ)

Today we introduced two books that have made a big impact after the 3.11 Earthquake and Tsunami catastrophe. “2:46 Quakebook” and “Pray For Japan-The Day The World Started Praying for Japan”.
Both books were inspired through twitter and many readers of the books said they were moved to tears. The books were put together with the support of numerous people around the world through contributions and volunteers who translated the original stories in multiple languages.

今夜の放送で、地震関連の2冊の本をご紹介しました。「2:46 Quakebook(クウェイクブック)」と「Pray For Japan〜3.11 世界中が祈りはじめた日〜」です。これらはツイッターで火がつき、多くの感動を呼び起こしました。そしてこれらの本は、世界中の人たちの協力により編集され、数カ国語に翻訳されました。

2:46 Quakebook was created by a former British journalist, currently an English teacher in Japan widely known by his twitter handle name @ourmaninabiko. He sent out a single tweet asking for contributions to compile a book to raise funds for Red Cross Japan. Amazingly, the idea through a tweet was turned into a full project in just four weeks. Many essays, photos and artworks were sent in from all over the world and was complied into a book.
The ebook version on Kindler is available on Amazon for $9.99 and is also downloadable for free on the Sony Reader Store with a request to donate on your own. All proceeds go to Red Cross Japan supporting the relief efforts in the Tohoku area.
Its Japanese version (printed in E/J) will be released on June 14.
*Visit for more details of Quakebook.
*Quakebook on Twitter:
*Quakebook on Facebook:

まずは「2:46 Quakebook」。イギリス人の元ジャーナリストで、現在は日本で英語教師として活動している”ourmaninabiko“(アウア・マン・イン・アビコ。Twitter上の名前)さんが中心となって出版した本です。彼は日本赤十字への募金を募るための本の出版を思いつき、Twitterで呼びかけました。彼の一言のつぶやきが世界中を巻き込み、わずか4週間で出版が実現しました。
いろんな国から集まった、たくさんのストーリーやエピソード、写真やアートで構成された「2:46 Quakebook」は、オンラインでも購入できます。今のところは英語版のみですが、アマゾンで9.99ドルで発売中です。また”ソニーリーダーストア”では無料でダウンロードできますが、その代わり日本赤十字社への寄付が条件です(金額は個人の判断による)。Amazonの手数料を含む売り上げの全てが日本赤十字社に寄付されます。
日本語版の制作は着々と進んでおり(「午後2時46分すべてが変わった」)英語/日本語併記の形で6月14日に発売予定です。詳しくは またはこちらをご覧下さい。

Pray for Japan-The Day the World Started Praying for Japan was created by Hiroyuki Tsuruda, a second year student at Keio University. He was on his way to a driving school in Tochigi when the earthquake hit.
He stayed at a training camp with no power or water. He spent his night checking twitter through e-mobile on his laptop and noticed 100’s of messages of support and encouragement pouring in from all the world every minute to #prayforjapan.
By the following day, he had set up a website sharing the most memorable and touching tweets. The feedback was overwhelming and soon a print version was in the works. *Click here to see the website.
The book is available at major bookstores nationwide. All royalties from the book is donated to support the Tohoku area.

そして今夜はもうひとつ「Pray For Japan 〜 3.11 世界中が祈りはじめた日〜」をご紹介しました。慶応大学2年の鶴田浩之さんが中心となって作った本です。鶴田さんは16歳の時に起業し、現在はLabit Inc. という会社を経営していますが、その鶴田さんが栃木県北部の自動車学校で免許合宿をしていた時に、地震が起きました。
電気や水道が停まり、合宿所で寒い夜を過ごした鶴田さんは、 ツイッターをチェックしました。そこで彼が見たのは、ハッシュタグ”prayforjapan“に世界中から送られた何百ものメッセージでした。鶴田さんはすぐに、その中から特に心を打つメッセージを集めたウェブサイトを立ち上げました(サイトはこちら)。その反響はすさまじく、すぐに書籍化の運びとなりました。
「Pray For Japan 〜世界中が祈りはじめた日〜」は、全国主要書店にて購入できます。印税の全てが東北の被災地支援の寄付に充てられます。

These books represent just a few of the multiple projects that surged after the 3.11 disaster. They are a testament to the beauty of humanity and that the world can overcome differences in the face of adversity. A highly recommended read for generations to come.