Carmen and I arrived home early Sunday morning to a chilly house. The Pacific Northwest bore the brunt of an incredible wind and rainstorm last Thursday, and nearly 1 million homes in the region were without power at one point. The kids (and the babysitter) were resourceful and managed to stay warm and comfortable throughout. They made the ordeal into an adventure, and camped out in the family room around the fireplace, using blankets, sweaters, and sleeping bags to keep warm. They lit the gas stove with a match and were actually cooking up a storm when we got back.
All of the frozen food in the freezer section of the refrigerator melted and had to be thrown away, but the standalone freezer in the garage was just fine. The power came back on at around 11 AM. Not all of our friends are so fortunate. Per the PSE Update, it appears that 200,000 people are still without power. There are reports of brazen thefts of running generators, some gas stations are out of gas, and there was appararently a real run on food at the local grocery stores over the weekend.
Carmen and I were thoroughly jetlagged, but happy to be home and to find everyone happy, safe, and secure.
So how was the trip? I managed to meet with 4 IT and PC magazines, a bunch of Amazon Web Services users and potential users, and to help out with a developer conference that was run at the Amazon.jp office in Shibuya. I posted a number of photo sets including Hello From Japan, Tokyo Pictures, Tokyo – Plastic Food, and Tokyo – Conveyor Belt Sushi. I also had way too much Katsudon.
Carmen had a good time as well. She learned to navigate the train system with ease, following the maps, asking lots of questions, and even making transfers.
We had a pair of memorable dinners — Chinese food with Emerson Mills (my evangelist in Japan) and his wife, and a traditional Japanese dinner with my long-time friend Danny Choo.