By Jennifer Wendel
Junior Aaron Geller returned from Waseda University in March after studying abroad there since last September. Although the earthquake did not seriously affect his school in Japan, it did postpone classes for three weeks. K has officially closed their program for the rest of this year. Geller happened to leave 4 days before the earthquake struck.
Geller said that it was a “surreal feeling” to learn of the devastation of Japan; and, on a more personal level, the devastation of towns “just around the corner” from where he was living. At the same time, his distance from the culture prevented the earthquake from strongly affecting him. “I didn’t go through anything, I didn’t experience anything,” he said. “It feels weird that I would associate with the earthquake.”
Geller experienced a mixture of emotions as a result of his recent departure from the country. “In a way there’s a certain detachment because I’m always seeing it through the TV and Internet. I don’t feel connected to the event, but I do feel connected to the people,” he said of the country that welcomed and hosted him last September.
But still Geller cautions against getting caught up in the media frenzy over Japan. “The real concentration should be on people in the North [of Japan] who have lost their lives and everything,” he said.
A memorial service on Saturday will provide the K College community with the opportunity to pay tribute to the many lives lost in the disaster.