Being stranded in Tokyo

It’s been 10 years since Japan experienced another nuclear calamity. In 2011, the Fukushima Daiichi plant was shattered and the largest industrial disaster in the country’s history. Children who lived in the vicinity were evacuated, but civilians were allowed back to retrieve important papers and other personal items. For those without possession of such a relic, much remains unknown. As the land of emperors, mist-covered mountains and serene rivers, Tokyo is virtually encased in mystery. For those trying to understand Japan, however, the destination of choice could not be more ideal: the banishing event Covid-19, or “The Darkened Convection of Tokyo,” takes place in a subway station, 150 miles from the epicenter of the meltdown. The phenomenon of the apocalypse entails a dense fog descending on Tokyo, clouding the city skyline in a dazzling glow of destruction. Every single traveler to the city will be witnesses to apocalyptic destruction — regardless of nationality, race or age — but in a city that is so large and incredibly complex, it’s challenging to conceive of how “fallen” Tokyo could exist without also destroying that entire geographical area to the east, too. But that’s a matter for Covid-19.

While there are no guarantees, preparations have been made for the experience to be an exercise in relentless excitement. A trusty mask has been provided — AOI masks are designed to keep people cool and dry — and in direct response to the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami of 2011, 20,000 volunteers were dispatched to offer emergency first aid. Among them, 20 ambulances are on site, each equipped with inflatable water desalinization machines that sterilize water twice daily.

Proper transportation has been hired to ensure that no passengers, even those indoors, become exposed to radiation poisoning. Travelers are encouraged to take gloves, long sleeves and bathrobes, and should even take a filtration respirator. And in the spirit of festival-like duty, there is no need to bring a change of clothes, as an inspection is performed prior to entry into the facility.

Below, Dr. Michael Chandler, national director of the World Federation of Exterminators, explains the possible dangers inherent in the human health effects of the so-called radiation flu — which, he warned, “is a real and live disease that is causing great harm to people around the world.” Dr. Chandler also offered his advice for what to do if exposure to irradiated material can be mitigated. (Scroll down for full slideshows).



“The Darkened Convection of Tokyo” is centered around Tokyo Station, which is closed to the public for a while. It may seem surprising that a nuclear disaster would now close an active subway station — like it or not, a disaster is a disaster. The 23-mile evacuation area is a potential zone that remains closed to residents, however, that is where the apocalypse sets in, and most people are subject to radiation exposure. The Fukushima plant and area north and south of the facility have become highly contaminated. The train station lies close to this urban area, which experienced tremendous fallout. A black van or truck is a basic precaution to take into the station at all times. Fortunately, a hazmat truck is available; a short-stay antibiotic tablet is easily disposed of. Any personal items that were lost in the evacuation, like wallets or phones, are safe, but leave no trace should they be discovered.

From a logistics standpoint, adequate bottled water is available, as well as rice noodles, cooked or cold, and water inflatable swimming pools, to float for most purposes. As long as one is not contaminated, all venues of work are closed for the duration of the event. Please take note: If you want to smoke at the experience, only have it in an approved area, away from audience members.

“All Hands On Deck”

Temporary nursing units have been provided at Narita International Airport and near the station. No Narita employees are asked to travel to the event. Last-minute suitcases may be brought on to the events depending on the number of empty seats. All flights to and from the airport are canceled.

Distress-and-contact services have been provided through the Transportation Ministry.

The Global Stranding Assistance Service is a public telephone number where a guidebook with information about the airfield and tour company seats are made available. Only one airline ticket is necessary for this service, while the other tickets can be obtained on arrival, when inbound flights take off. Those who wish to purchase such tickets may do so for the journey to Nagoya, the city closest to the city of Fukushima. Contacts are also available at Arifinjinmu or 64

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