Natori, a small port city in Miyagi prefecture which was one of the spots most affected by the tsunami in 2011 in Tohoku area. Other than causing damage in Fukushima’s electronic plant and nuclear radiation to the surrounding area, the tsunami also laid waste Natori’s coastal area at the time. When I was doing my soundscape research in Sendai city, I decided to visit Natori, which was located just 13 kilometers south, using a train.
I arrived at Natori station nearing 12pm afternoon. When I arrived, the rain welcomed me. Though I wanted to walk to the coastline which was quite far, about, 5.5 km toward the beach, because I didn’t see buses nor other public transports heading there. The rain made the temperature colder piercing my tropical skin. However I still wanted to try to walk one step at a time. I brought a raincoat and an umbrella anyway. I ended up going walking through the pavement coast in Natori in the middle of this weather.
In the middle of the trip the rain poured down hard and the weather felt even colder. I had walked three kilometres. Until finally I felt that it was impossible to reach the coast to recoed sounds there in the weather I was in. This intention was to risky, other than the fact that my body was getting really tired. If it was sunny, I would have continued my trip, because during this research I had gotten used to walk long distances.
Finally I decided to return to the station. However, I still wanted to record sounds in Natori. And so while holding an umbrella on my left hand, I was also holding my handy recorder on my right hand and recorded the rain while strolling through the streets of Natori. The sound of raindrops hitting the surface of my umbrella splattering. Meanwhile the sound of wheels from vehicles passing by the concrete street that was wet from the rain, sounded so unique. Water, sometimes could feel so soothing, and sometimes it could get so intense surpassing human power.