Thursday, October 20, 2016

Lost in Tokyo Train Terminal

We needed to get to Tsukuba University, an hour North of Tokyo to give a talk.  The instructions were simple.  Take the 0832 bullet train form Kakegawa to Tokyo.  There would be no train changes – what could go wrong?  Well, having been around the block a few times, I solicited the telephone number of my faculty friend who was sponsoring my talk.

We flawlessly arrived in Tokyo Terminal… to utter mayhem!  There were people everywhere going in every direction.  We had been told, if we weren’t immediately met, to go to “local platforms 2&3 (blue and green)” and wait there.

Well, we went there but saw no one looking for us.  As we stood there, looking confused, an elderly Japanese gentleman approached us and in halting English asked if we needed help.

Did we!!!!  Yepper!!

He had a cell phone, and happily offered to call for us.  We reached our Professor at the University, who told us one of his grad students was desperately looking for us!
And… after just a few minutes, whilst our Japanese rescuer insisted on waiting with us, the sweating huffing grad student came up most apologetically.

At last, we were no longer lost.

It seems too capricious to compare our rescue to the rescue we received from The Christ, but that’s what comes to mind.  We once were lost, but then we were found.  We were on a journey but had no idea how to get where we needed to be.  We needed someone to rescue us from our lostness.  We couldn’t help ourselves.  We didn’t deserve to be saved, we just were saved.  It wasn’t that we had DONE anything to deserve rescue, it was the grace and mercy of our rescuer that mattered.  It was really more about THEIR ability than ours.

Hmm, not a bad comparison I guess.

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