Published December 2, 2017 by rochellewisoff

Hope you brought your hazmat suit, because this week Pegman takes us to Fukushima, Japan, site of one of the world’s worst nuclear disasters, which occurred in 2011. Believe it or not, you’ll find both streetview and photospheres in this abandoned town.

Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to write 150 words inspired by the location. You can capture your own photo from google or use the one provided.

Click on the blue frog below to add your story to this week’s link-up and to read the work of your co-contributors.

I’m never sure from week to week if I’ll participate in What Pegman Saw. However the lure of those extra 50 words is strong. Many thanks to K Rawson and J Hardy Carroll. 

Namie Choritsu Ukedo Elementary

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Word Count: 150


As a Japanese-American reporter I begged for the assignment to interview Fukushima survivors five years after the tsunami. What could be more fun? Sushi and kimono.

Walking along Kakamura beach with Hiroshi, I turn on my recorder.   

He clutches a stuffed bear. “Last night I had a dream. The ocean swelled and rose to the mountains. I woke in a tidal wave of sweat. It was no dream.”

My breath catches in my throat. “Go on.”

“It was like being in hell. If the waters did not kill you, the great fires would.”  From his pocket Hiroshi pulls a photograph of a smiling woman holding a little boy. He hugs the teddy bear. “My son was only four. My Yumi expected our second child any day.”

I swallow hard.

“The water is beautiful.” His gaze drifts past me. “I suppose it is nonsense to hold a grudge against the sea.”

46 comments on “ISLAND OF GOOD FORTUNE

    • Dear Courtney,

      I watched a documentary on You Tube yesterday that inspired my little story. They interviewed survivors and one of them said just that about holding a grudge. You know how the muse can be. 😉 Thank you.




  • “What could be more fun?” Wow.

    How interesting that we both chose to write about the five year anniversary of the tsunami. I can’t imagine what the survivors still go through, but I’m writing a (fictional) series about one of them.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Always so delighted when Pegman lures you out with the extra 50 words, Rochelle. This latest of yours is another gem.

    The picture you chose is haunting, and your protagonist’s acceptance makes the story all the more poignant.

    I love how a teddy bear wound up in your story as well as mine. I’m finding myself getting a lot of goosebumps reading through the stories this week!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Karen,

      The picture of happy children on the wall of the elementary school ruins spoke to me. And teddy bears…so much a part of childhood universally it seems. GMTA.
      Honestly I was only going to look through the Pegman pictures and perhaps write later. Then, as I often do, I watched a short documentary with interviews of Fukashima survivors. Yeah. I was hooked.
      Thank you for your kind words.



      Liked by 1 person

  • A very touching, and well done story of a tragic incident. There’s still floating debris washing up on far away shores. Including ours. Having spent 28 years in the Navy, I can understand the futility of holding a grudge against the sea. It is so terrible, yet so beautiful. But then, one could also philosophize the values of holding any grudge. Well done m’luv.

    Liked by 2 people

  • Dear Rochelle,

    A most beautifully told, tragic tale of nature’s force. It would be most difficult not to hold a grudge but then, he would never be able to move forward, would he?

    :Lotsa love,


    Liked by 1 person

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