Ear: Drifter

The 2011 Japanese earthquake and tsunami — caused by a subduction zone similar to the Cascadia, which lurks off Oregon's coast — has offered up a belated surprise.

The Mainichi reports that a fishing boat turned up recently in Okinawa, 1,180 miles away from its original home in Iwate Prefecture (bit.ly/iwateboat). It was found by the Nakagusuku Coast Guard, whose photos of the boat are shown.

The owner, fisherman Kiyofumi Sasaki, now 74, was tracked down by the boat's serial number. He says the boat, named Seishomaru, has traveled farther than he ever has.

While he was quite astonished by the discovery, he doesn't want it back. "Because of my old age, it's going to be difficult to go to the site (and retrieve the boat)," Sasaki observed. "I hope someone there can use it."

Elleda Wilson is an editorial assistant for The Astorian and author of the award-winning In One Ear community column. Contact her at 971-704-1718 or ewilson@dailyastorian.com.

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