Since I last reported there has been several developments. More nuclear stuff. More earthquakes. More panic. More everything. But most importantly for my situation, the option of leaving.
The offer was perhaps always implied, but certainly never highlighted. And because of this, perhaps, I didn't feel the need to leave either. But then all our house mates started leaving. Foreigners in general are scarse in an area of Tokyo usually packed with them. The shops are raided, leaving nothing but barren shelves everywhere. People are starting to look scared.
It gets to you after a while. The mood, the panic. The stress, the tiredness. And all of a sudden I find myself unable to function properly, and my presense in the city and at the embassy feels more like a liability than a resource.
Speaking of resources. They are scarse. I feel that you should be pretty darned sure as a foreigner right now that the resources you produce are larger than those you consume. I started out feeling that leaving sounded selfish, but by now I feel selfish for considering not leaving.
Still, it was very much an emotional decision. I had to figure out what I wanted - and needed - before consulting my family at home. I knew they would want me to come home. Consulting others at the embassy also felt difficult, because they are in the same situation, and their personal experience is similar but not equal to mine. Some are coping better than others.
In the end I decided that it was better for me, my family, Japan, and possibly the embassy if I left. Thus I am now struggling to stay awake so that I won't miss my flight in the morning. I do feel like the rat deserting a sinking ship, but it makes me feel better to think that the ship might be able to stay afloat longer if it doesn't have to carry my weight.
I have no idea if I am leaving for good or temporarily. Right now I allow myself to look forward to sleeping in my own bed again, and once I am properly rested I will make another difficult decision together with my employer: to return or not return.
Japan - forever in my heart.