This morning I was concerned about when I would be able to work out today. Should I get up early and run in the cold? Should I go for a run after work? Since it’s no-fees day at the YMCA, should I go there instead after work? This was the biggest problem I had today. Oh how little it matters.
Today, I met somebody who helped me gain a little perspective on life. At the breakfast restaurant I work at, I had a table of two middle aged men in my section. As I was serving them, we got to talking. One of the men was so happy to be there with his friend having a delicious breakfast of pancakes and hash browns. He kept saying that he hadn’t had pancakes in so long. In passing he had mentioned something about living in Japan. Well apparently, he had recently returned to Canada after living in Japan for many years.
When Japan was mentioned, I was extremely curious if he had been in Japan during the earthquakes and tsunami. It turned out he was there, in Tokyo, and he told me about his experience. He said it was the scariest 4 and a half minutes of his life. He was so grateful to be alive today eating the pancakes our cooks had prepared for him. During the earthquake, at about 1 and a half minutes in, he started thinking that that was it. He would never see his wife and kids again. He was going to die. The time seemed to stop and it felt like the earthquake lasted years. When the tsunami hit, the worst thing to see was when he saw people getting “washed away” and being helpless to do anything. Nothing compares to the horrors he saw and experienced. Definitely the scariest thing in the entire world. Afterwards, with all of the radiation from the nuclear power plants, he said that it was like having a constant sunburn. It was a nightmare.
This man’s native land is here in Canada, but he lives for Japan. He wants more than anything to be able to go back. But he wants to know that he’ll be safe. The risk of nuclear disaster is too much for him to risk. He says that one little thing could happen and it would be fatal for Japan if something disrupts the power plants.
Meeting this man really opened my eyes and gave me a little perspective. I have a wonderful life. I have all the necessities I need and I feel safe in the place that I live. That isn’t the case for so many people in Japan. My daily “worries” are nothing compared to what people went through (and are still going through) halfway across the world.
My life is good and I really have to enjoy every minute I can because you never know what can happen. Mother Nature may throw something at you or the person driving in the car next to you may fall asleep and hit you. BOOM. LIFE IS SHORT! Take advantage of it and enjoy.
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