You can read news from Fukushima, by Fukushima from the Minpo website. It’s the regular news for Fukushima, not meant for the outside, but for us who live here.
So anyway, I was reading the above article about schools who canceled their school field trips to Fukushima after the disaster, and are now starting the trips back up, or thinking about starting the trips back up.
Once thing you need to know: Japanese schools often have field trips. It starts when the kids are young, on field trips to nearby parks and camping areas. Then as the students get older, the field trip becomes a once a year extravanganza to far away places. I think the idea is to introduce these important places to children who might normally not have a chance to visit.
My son, in his last year of junior high, went to Kyoto and Osaka. These two cities are far away for us. As a family, we frequently get to Tokyo, but Kyoto and Osaka are further south, so we basically never to there. So it was nice for him to to get the opportunity to hang out with his friends in those places.
My very first visit to Fukushima Prefecture was in the nineties on a school field trip. I was teaching at a junior high in Chiba Prefecture (near Tokyo) on the JET Programme. The school invited me to tag along on the third year students’ trip to Fukushima. I did not know ANYTHING about Fukushima. We went to the Goshiki Numa in western Japan near Mt. Bandai. Goshiki Numa are five beautiful lakes created by an explosion of Mt. Bandai in 1888.
So you can see, way before 3/11 the earthquake occurred, Fukushima was a common sightseeing spot for school kids in the Tokyo area. Many of the Tokyo area kids live in a city atmosphere, and for them, coming to Fukushima meant experiencing a more rural part of Japan.
You can see a live webcam viewing of one of the lakes if you click on the link below. Just don’t do it during the Japanese night, or it will be dark!