3/January/2024 in Tokyo
Last night. At home
Suddenly breaking news began
TV was showing an airplane burning in Tokyo Haneda airport
Seeing an airplane burning was extraordinary
Seeing an airplane burning was, just, extraordinary
It's completely different feel from seeing a car or train burning
Airplane is much bigger
And more importantly,
an airplane is a symbol of something fun, exciting & very special
It's even related to some kind of sentiment, called "national pride"
Such a special thing is burning
Such a symbol of our "dreams" is burning
It must feel extraordinary
It must bring a certain sadness & sorrow
And an airport
It is the start & end point of special time
Haneda airport is
where I leave Japan
& where I come back to Japan
Haneda airport is
where I say "Bye bye"
& where I initially feel "Back home"
Also personally, my family member worked there for a very long time
And as a kid I sometime went to Haneda airport
No major destructions happened to Haneda airport yesterday
Operation re-started several hours after the incident
But for a moment, I couldn't help imagining how I would feel
if Haneda airport was burnt down,
if Haneda airport would disappear,
if significant places & things in my life would go away completely
For a long time,
I've been expressing my liking & appreciation for "ephemerality"
as if things should not be forever,
as if everything should be short-lived,
as if things that last long have lower value than ephemerally things
And in my sense of beauty, I'm still thinking this way
At the same time, I can't deny this fact;
"A place holds memory"
There are places that play a significant role in one's life
There are people that are significant for one's life
I can still say;
"Memories are the most important"
"Whether or not the place still exists, whether or not I still keep in touch with the person..........it's all secondary. Less important than memories in my heart"
But perhaps, it's not always true
If one's important place disappears,
it could bring a momentary pain & it's felt like "losing memory"
Probably, memories would not be sole, independent, solid, strong things
But fragile, vulnerable things,
that can be very dependant on the places & people
And without these places and/or people,
we might not be able to remember anymore
And "not be able to remember" means,
it does not exist anymore, anywhere..........
........And some old writing of mine came to mind
It was something I wrote at the end of 2022 in Tokyo,
after witnessing things happened in Ukraine that year & meeting many people from there
"........I'm now in my hometown in my home country
Yet, this is my only hometown, my only home country
I can go abroad,
only because I know, whenever I want, I can come back to this very boring yet very precious place
But many people I met this year can't go back, no matter how much they wish
I already wrote this several months ago,
but I still can't imagine how I would feel if this street, this shop, this building, this park, this tree, this sea, and this friend in front of me, that all played a significant irreplaceable role in my life, are destroyed, broken into ash and vanished
I still can't imagine how I would feel if all these memories of mine and important people go away completely from me
Can't imagine how I would feel seeing them destroyed in my very eyes and I can't do anything........"
(*Apart from my lengthy sentiment, 5 people passed away due to the airport incident. They were national coast guard crews, planning to fly to the area affected by earthquake to deliver aid. This is such a tragedy. My sincere condolence to their families )