The farmhouse sits at the end of a mud-caked, one-lane road strewn with toppled trees, the decaying carcasses of dead pigs and large debris deposited by the March 11 tsunami. Stranded alone inside the unheated, dark home is 75-year-old Kunio Shiga. He cannot walk very far and doesn’t know what happened to his wife.
His neighbors have all left because the area is 12 miles (20 kilometers) from the crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant — just within the zone where authorities have told everyone to get out because of concerns about leaking radiation.
No rescuer ever came for him.
When a reporter and two photographers from The Associated Press arrived at Shiga’s doorstep Friday, the scared and disoriented farmer said: “You are the first people I have spoken to” since the earthquake and tsunami.
“Do you have any food?” he asked. “I will pay you.””