Daffodil; botanical name, Narcissus tazetta; family, Amaryllidaceae.
The photo was taken on March 22, 2011, in our yard.
(No direct relation to the text)
The following is an e-mail message from a friend of mine in Ukraine, the country of the Chernobyl disaster (1986). The content is the words of sympathy to the Japanese people who have suffered from the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, so that I quote here the message with some modifications of his English.
March 22, 2011
I and my friends in Ukraine with a deep sadness perceived information about frightful earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan, which resulted in human victims and caused considerable destructions.
Ukraine passed a similar way after a failure on the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. It was awful! Japan is an unusual country! People and country are very sympathetic on the whole. The Japanese are such people that very well understand us and support in all of questions. I hope that in return we understand the Japanese people and will support them in all of questions.
We are sincerely sure that the Japanese people will overcome crucibles, bravely fighting them out; and the land of the rising sun will continue to surprise the world with the firmness of spirit, unique culture and new achievements. Your national self-control, courage, orderliness and the ability to meet all the challenges with dignity lead not only to respect and admiration, but also to the confidence that your people will be able to restore the living standards typical of you.
We in Ukraine commiserate with those who lost their loved ones in this tragedy and those who do not know the fate of their relatives and friends. We have confidence in your courage and patience. Our hearts are with you.
Please accept my condolences,
S (A. F. A)
I hope you still remember me.
I replied as follows:
March 22, 2011
It's the greatest joy to hear from you after some years. I well remember you and have sometimes been thinking of you. I sincerely thank you for your kind words of encouragement and condolences to us, the Japanese people, who are suffering from the colossal disaster and accident triggered by the earthquake.
All of my relatives, families and I have been quite safe. However, I, an ex-radiation physicist, am much worrying about the situation of Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant and wishing that they can overcome the difficulties soon. The towns swallowed by the tsunami show the state of complete devastation just like that after the air raids in the World War II. Japan rose to a flourishing country after the war in the course of many years. So, I would like to believe that such a recovery would come again to the eastern region of Japan.
Thanking you repeatedly,