A big green 0 was the first thing I saw when I opened my eyes this morning. Within 10 minutes I was to the door. Snow blasted my face, and I ran through the blizzard, taking the time to snap a few pictures on my cell phone:
Osho, in Higashi Juso, is starting to accumulate a mantle of snow.
A shot of Juso Eki between the Eastern Mr. Donut and the entrance to Hankyu railway station
The train tracks and the area around the Yodogawa quickly accumulated a layer of snow. I wonder how the insulation of the residences of the homeless population, who live in the shanty town along the length of the Yodogawa river, compares to the average Japanese apartment.
I usually ride on the first car from track number 6 on my way to Osaka. This morning was the first time I remember being able to hear the conductor talking on his radio. Though muffled through the barrier that separates the cockpit from the cabin, I was able to make out the words ?concerned?, ?dangerous?, and ?please check?. A maintenance crew quickly entered the locomotive, as the passengers disembarked.
I?m glad nothing went wrong. Riding in the first car is the most dangerous place in a train to be in case of an accident. After the train crash on the JR line in Amagasaki, I remember reading in The Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook: Travel that if you know that a crash is imminent, it is a good idea to get to the rear of the train. Most of the casualties in Amagasaki were riding in the first two cars. Well, I didn?t start running to the back of the train when I heard the conductor?s concerned exchange on the radio. It would have been impossible to maneuver my way through, as all of the cars were packed like sardine tins.