A Japanese teenager who lost almost everything during a Tsunami last year received one piece of good news, as his much loved football was recovered in Alaska. It has been revealed by Officials from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, that the football has been the first bit of debris from the tsunami to reach shore on the other side of the world.
The ball was discovered by a man who was beachcombing on island in Alaska. In a stroke of serendipity, the man’s wife turned out to be Japanese and she talked to the happy owner of the football. Misaki Murakami, 16, found out the news when he received a phone call over the weekend.
The ball is being sent back to Murakami, who has been surprised to learn the distance his ball traveled. Despite it not being expensive, it does provide a link to his past and it is one of the few possessions he has from before the tsunami that wiped out his home.
The tsunami caused major devastation to Murakami and his family, and thousands of other Japanese families. People lost furniture and many other items they hold close to their heart. The natural disaster killed 15,000, which has been the biggest loss to the country, since items and possessions can always be replaced.
The ball holds sentimental value to Murakami because it is full with messages, written by people from a school he was at in 2005 when he left to join another one.
Initially the debris from the tsunami came together to form a massive mass in the middle of the ocean off Japan’s cost, but since then it has broken up. It has been estimated that the currents could carry the debris to Alaska, Canada, Washington and Oregon in 2013 and 2014.
The tsunami last year has hit Japan hard, as record deficits have been recorded since the disaster took place. Figures from the Japanese finance ministry have shown that the trade shortfall has hit $54.2 billion in the year up to March this year.
With Europe also suffering at the hands of the eurozone debt crisis, demand for products from Japan has fallen. Japanese exports have dropped by 3.7% to 65.282 trillion yen. However, imports to the country have increased by 11.6% to 69.692 yen.
With only one nuclear reactor still functioning after the Fukushima reactor disaster, there are concerns that Japan could be facing energy shortages during the summer months.