it is one hundred years since our children left


When the typhoon reaches its peak, with 180 km/h winds and driving rain like bullets, Beatrix Kondo steps out of her apartment and struggles into the middle of the street. There is no one else outside.


"I've prepared a few words," shouts Beatrix. She has to shout or she can't even hear her own voice. From her pocket she produces a written speech.


"Ahem." She clears her throat.


"Storm!" she cries. "Raging storm! Heed my words, o pitiless storm!"


She raises her arms in the frenzied wind, for dramatic effect.


"Human life is itself not unlike a storm—"


At just that moment, the rain-soaked script of Beatrix's speech is whipped from her hands by the wind and blown away.


"—a storm which... a, uh, storm that can..." Beatrix struggles to continue the speech, but she can't remember what she'd written, though she'd only just finished it a moment ago.


"Oh, crud."


She goes back inside.