Of all the terrible stories to come out of Japan there is one which I can’t get out of my mind. On the day of the earthquake a woman from Miyagi prefecture went to work. While she was at work the tsunami swept away her house, killing her husband and her three children. Her parents were also killed. Everything she woke up with that morning had gone- not simply her family and her home, but every last possession- her photos, her letters and her mementos. Although she has survived, the tsunami has washed away her life.
Carla Carlisle referred to the dignity of the Japanese people as “their gaman, more concept than word, which means a sense of endurance, a kind of grace in the face of disaster”. Her article, entitled “The Meaning of Loss’ in this week’s Country Life, will make any grown man cry.