Tsunami is a Japanese word for obvious reasons. It means “river wave”. We were awoken on Friday morning with ominous news of a massive earthquake in Japan and quickly notified our tenants and customers of a pending surge in our little harbor some 4500 miles away from the epicenter.
Vigilant boat owners sortied early Friday morning into a jumbled sea with concern and uncertainty. By 0900 news choppers were buzzing overhead awaiting the pending event. Reporters and “looky lous” migrated to the ends of our piers anxiously peering down at the water.
The ocean began doing unusual things around mid morning and continued on a cycle of water in and water out every 45 minutes or so. Once imminent disaster was ruled out, the choppers left and the people faded back away from the waters edge. It was at this point that all of the boats that had left in the early morning hours began arriving back at the harbor mouth. Unfortunately for them, this was the precise moment when the event began living up to it’s name, a Tsunami, a river wave. Boats were drawn in on massive flood tides and sucked out to sea on the following ebb tides. It was a proverbial circus of activity. The news choppers were gone and all the people had gone home.
Foolishly, we focused on our little world and our little inconveniences. After watching the news and reading news updates on the internet, I quickly realized that our problems were nothing at all. The mighty forces of plate tectonics had upset our endeavors to farm coastal plains and to harness the power of the atom. We are just temporary and we were reminded of our status on the world’s stage Friday, March 11 2011.