2005/07/24

State negligence and asbestos equally toxic

 僕は英辞郎を使って英語を読みまくり、インターネットラジオのNHKのラジオジャパン英語ニュースで時事英語を聞きまくってます。(^^;また、VOAでヴォイスレコーダーにDLしたMP3音声とテキストも楽しんでます。
参考「こんな感じで英辞郎を使ってます

State negligence and asbestos equally toxic

07/23/2005

In 1988, a group representing the domestic asbestos industry published an information booklet called "Sekimen no Sugao" (The true face of asbestos). The Japan Asbestos Association booklet declares in its foreword: "Asbestos is an indispensable and valuable material for the progress and development of the industrial world."

The publication was issued two years after an International Labor Organization agreement that outlawed highly toxic blue asbestos.

2005年07月22日(金曜日)付
【天声人語】

 「せきめんの素顔」という冊子がある。アスベストの業界団体・日本石綿協会が、88年に出した。前書きに、石綿は「産業界の進歩、発展に無くてはならない貴重な存在」とある。国際労働機関(ILO)条約で、毒性の強い青石綿の使用が禁止されてから2年後の刊行だった。

While the booklet does make mention of illnesses caused by asbestos, it asserts that a number of countermeasures had been put in place. "We can say with confidence that any further risks of asbestos-related illnesses are practically nonexistent," the booklet tells readers.

 冊子は、石綿によって引き起こされる病気にも触れているが、こんなくだりもある。「対策が次々と打たれ……今後石綿による疾病の危険はほとんどないと確信できるまでに至っております」

With regard to potential health hazards of asbestos particles to the general public, the booklet explains: "We agree with experts who maintain that the probability (of becoming afflicted with any lethal asbestos-related illness) is almost on par with, or lower than, the chance of being struck dead by lightning-a rare, freak accident at best."

 一般の住民に対する石綿粉じんによる危険率については、こう述べている。「めったに起きない落雷による死亡危険率と同程度か、それ以下とする専門家の意見に同意するものであります」

Not surprisingly, the booklet goes to great lengths to mention the merits of asbestos but is short on its demerits. It was not until much later that asbestos was shown to be capable of causing tremendous health damage.

 記述は、やはり、石綿の益の方に重く、害の方に軽く傾いているようだ。その後に発覚した被害は、甚大だった。

More than 10 years before the booklet was published, the former Ministry of Labor issued a directive on heath hazards for asbestos factory employees, their families and local residents. But, other than that, the government took no real action.

As the current vice minister of health indicated when he lambasted the government's inaction as a "fatal mistake," it is now becoming increasingly obvious that this tragic mess is due to state negligence in protecting the public from this particular form of pollution.

 この冊子が出る10年以上前に、当時の労働省が、石綿工場の従業員の家族や周辺住民の健康被害について危険性を指摘する通達を出していた。なのに、国は有効な手を打たなかった。「決定的な失敗」と、今の副大臣が述べたが、公の不作為による「公」害の様相が一段と濃くなってきた。

In 1934, a chief engineer at packing material maker Nihon Pakkingu Seisakusho, authored a book titled "Ishiwata." In it, he notes, "There are yet no systematic studies and reports on the health condition of asbestos factory workers. But as far as I know, the amount of dust in those factories can only be described as truly excessive." Surely "The Real Face of Asbestos" would be a title more befitting of this 71-year-old publication?

 かなり古びた『石綿』という本を開く。「我が国に於ける石綿工場労働者の健康状態に関する組織的な報告は未だ見ないが、工場内の塵芥の程度は、著者の見たる範囲に於ては実に甚だしいものである」。日本パッキング製作所技師長・杉山旭著、昭和9年刊とある。71年前に記された「石綿の素顔」のように思われた。

--The Asahi Shimbun, July 22(IHT/Asahi: July 23,2005)

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2005/07/14

Act quickly to defuse asbestos `time bomb'

 僕は英辞郎を使って英語を読みまくり、インターネットラジオのNHKのラジオジャパン英語ニュースで時事英語を聞きまくってます。(^^;また、VOAでヴォイスレコーダーにDLしたMP3音声とテキストも楽しんでます。
参考「こんな感じで英辞郎を使ってます

Act quickly to defuse asbestos `time bomb'

07/13/2005

Steve McQueen, the Hollywood action star, died at the age of 50 in fall 1980. He had terminal cancer (mesothelioma of the linings of the lungs). His exposure to asbestos was thought to have caused the deadly illness.

2005年07月12日(火曜日)付
【天声人語】

 ハリウッドを代表するアクションスター、スティーブ・マックイーンが、50歳の若さで他界したのは80年の秋だった。末期のがん(胸膜中皮腫(ちゅうひしゅ))に侵されており、原因はアスベスト(石綿)ではないかといわれた。

Asbestos was used in some form or other in the brake linings of the actor's vehicles and even in his flameproof stunt suit, according to William Nolan's book, "McQueen: Star on Wheels." (A Japanese translation was published by Hayakawa Shobo.)

 車のブレーキの内張りや、レーサー用の不燃スーツの裏地など、アスベストは、マックイーンがその人生を通じて使ったほとんどの乗り物に何らかの形で存在していた(W・ノーラン『マックイーン』早川書房)。

The word "asbestos" derives from the Greek for "indestructible" or "inextinguishable." Strongly resistant to heat and acid, the fibrous metamorphic mineral can be used in a wide range of applications. It's basically indestructible.

 アスベストは「不滅」あるいは「消すことのできない」を意味するギリシャ語に由来するという。熱や酸に強く、物の形に従いながら半永久的に存在し続ける。

Man's use of asbestos in fact can be traced as far back as the Stone Age, according to Hirotada Hirose's book "Shizukana Jigen Bakudan" (Silent time bomb), published by Shinyosha.

In ancient Greece, asbestos was used as wicks for gold lumps at temples. In Greco-Roman times, there was a high incidence of lung ailments among asbestos miners and workers whose job was to weave asbestos yarn into textiles.

 広瀬弘忠著『静かな時限爆弾』(新曜社)によると、アスベスト利用の歴史は石器時代にまでさかのぼる。古代ギリシャでは神殿の金のランプの灯心として使われた。既にギリシャ・ローマの時代には、アスベストを採掘する人や、その繊維を紡ぐ職人に肺疾患が多発していたという。

A picture of the extent of health damage caused by asbestos in Japan is finally emerging. The victims have not been limited to a large number of factory workers. Even the wives of these workers have died of mesothelioma after years of inhaling fine asbestos particles while washing their husbands' work clothes.

If the small amount of particles inhaled outside the factory could make these wives sick, then anyone can inhale enough to become ill.

 日本での、アスベストによる健康被害の実態がようやく明らかになりつつある。多数の工場従業員だけでなく、夫の作業着を洗濯する時にアスベストを吸い込んだ妻までが、中皮腫で亡くなったという。どこかで吸い込んだだけで発症の危険をはらむなら、誰にでも起こり得ることだろう。

The "indestructible bomb" has not completely exploded yet, but experts predict cases of asbestos illness, which has an unusually long dormancy period, will soon explode.

Let me suggest a belated prescription to defuse this indestructible bomb: Get a complete picture of the extent of asbestos damage, explore treatments for victims and find a safe way to remove the danger.

 発症までの期間の極めて長い「不滅の爆弾」が、本格的に爆発するのはこれからともいう。被害の全容をつかみ、治療の手だてを探る。爆弾を安全なやり方で除去する。それが、遅まきながら、不滅を不発に変える道ではないか。

--The Asahi Shimbun, July 12(IHT/Asahi: July 13,2005)

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2005/07/10

Baseball mega-hero comes back to ballpark

 僕は英辞郎を使って英語を読みまくり、インターネットラジオのNHKのラジオジャパン英語ニュースで時事英語を聞きまくってます。(^^;また、VOAでヴォイスレコーダーにDLしたMP3音声とテキストも楽しんでます。
参考「こんな感じで英辞郎を使ってます

Baseball mega-hero comes back to ballpark

07/05/2005

Thunderous applause erupted from a crowd of more than 40,000 at the Tokyo Dome as Shigeo Nagashima, 69, raised his left hand. The former Yomiuri Giants slugger, affectionately called "Mister," flashed his characteristic big smile at fans Sunday. It was his first public appearance since he suffered a stroke in spring 2004.

2005年07月04日(月曜日)付
【天声人語】

 ミスターは左手を上げた。4万人を超す観衆から拍手がわき起こる。「おかえりなさーい」。きのう長嶋茂雄さん(69)が東京ドームに姿を見せた。昨春に病で倒れて以来のことだ。あの屈託のない笑顔が帰ってきた。

Giants haters are legion, but I have yet to come across anyone who doesn't like Nagashima. His achievements are the stuff of sports legend, and, coupled with his funny manner of speech, are endlessly talked about. Who can forget his dramatic sayonara home run while Emperor Hirohito, posthumously known as Emperor Showa, was watching the game? Or, that unforgettable tautology he shouted during his retirement ceremony? "The Giants are forever immortal." His No. 3 jersey is ingrained in the memories of many fans, just as his moments of glory resonate with certain episodes in their own lives.

 アンチ巨人は多いが、長嶋嫌いはまずいない。天覧試合でのサヨナラ本塁打や、引退式での「巨人軍は永久に不滅」なんて変な日本語は、もはや伝説のように語り継がれている。背番号3の名場面を、みずからの人生の一コマと重ねて記憶に刻む人も多い。

Japan was experiencing its postwar economic miracle when Nagashima was in his prime. Most Japanese were genuinely taken by any strong, cool "hero."

Children's top three favorite things were said to be "The Giants, sumo grand champion Taiho and tamagoyaki (sweet egg loaf)." Those were relatively simple, innocent days.

 現役選手で活躍したのは、ちょうど高度経済成長期だ。大多数の人々が強くてかっこいいヒーローに心から熱狂した。子どもが好きなものといえば「巨人・大鵬・卵焼き」。そんな、どこか単純な時代だった。

Yu Aku, a writer of pop lyrics, once wrote in The Asahi Shimbun that those three favorites were originally "Nagashima, Taiho and egg loaf." According to Aku, Nagashima was replaced with the team name in 1963, when fans began referring to him and his equally awesome teammate, Sadaharu Oh, as the "ON Guns."

 でも、あれは最初は「長嶋・大鵬・卵焼き」だった、と作詞家の阿久悠さんが本紙に書いていた。王貞治選手とともに「ON砲」と言われ始めた1963年に「巨人」に変わったという。

What would be today's equivalents of "Nagashima, Taiho and egg loaf?"

There are more sports and forms of entertainment now, and people's tastes have diversified. There isn't any one team or individual monopolizing victory and the public's adoration. If I must think of some icons, perhaps Hideki Matsui of the New York Yankees and pro golfer Ai Miyazato fit the bill. So, shall I say today's three favorites could be "Matsui, Ai-chan and ice cream?"

 現在の「長嶋・大鵬・卵焼き」は何だろうか。スポーツや娯楽の種類が増えて、好みも多様化した。勝利と人気を独り占めにする存在も見あたらない。あえて言えば、ヤンキースの松井秀喜、ゴルフの宮里藍選手らを並べて「松井、藍ちゃん、アイスクリーム」だろうか。

But Ichiro Suzuki of the Seattle Mariners and the national soccer team led by Zico have many devoted fans, too. And youngsters love kaiten-zushi (conveyor-belt sushi) and fried chicken as much as they love ice cream.

The more I wracked my brains, the more I was reminded of Nagashima's greatness. I suddenly recalled the words I used to say to myself on the batter's box in sandlot baseball: "No. 4 (in the batting order), third baseman, Nagashima."

 でも、イチロー選手やサッカーのジーコ・ジャパンへの声援も熱い。子どもは回転ずしやから揚げも大好きだ。悩むほどに、いわゆる一つの長嶋さんの大きさを思った。すると草野球の打席でよく口にした言葉がよみがえった。「よばん、さあど、ながしま」

--The Asahi Shimbun, July 4(IHT/Asahi: July 5,2005)

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2005/06/21

Lifesaving AEDs slowly being taken to heart

 僕は英辞郎を使って英語を読みまくり、インターネットラジオのNHKのラジオジャパン英語ニュースで時事英語を聞きまくってます。(^^;また、VOAでヴォイスレコーダーにDLしたMP3音声とテキストも楽しんでます。
参考「こんな感じで英辞郎を使ってます

Lifesaving AEDs slowly being taken to heart

06/21/2005

An AED is an automatic external defibrillator. It's a device that sends an electric shock to jump-start a stopped heart.

A year ago, restrictions on who could use an AED were lifted. You no longer need any formal medical training, as would a doctor or an emergency medical services worker, to operate an AED. Today, many airports and hotels have AEDs handy.

2005年06月20日(月曜日)付
【天声人語】

 AEDをご存じですか。自動体外式除細動器といっても、ますますわかりにくいかもしれない。乱暴にいえば、心臓が突然止まった時に、電気ショックを与えて、心臓の動きを元に戻すものだ。1年前、医師や救急救命士に限らず、だれでも使えるようになった。空港やホテルなどに置かれつつある。

Having heard there was even an AED at a sento public bathhouse in Tokyo's Ichigaya district, I went to take a look.

The defibrillator was there, sitting on a shelf by the reception desk.

"This is my way of serving the community," said Tetsuya Maeda, 37, the owner of the bathhouse.

 銭湯にもあると聞いて、東京・市谷の大星湯を訪ねた。「AED」のステッカーがはられ、現物はフロント横の棚にちょこんと載っていた。経営者の前田哲也さん(37)は「地域の人たちにお役に立てればと思って」という。

The sento began offering courses on artificial respiration and emergency cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to patrons seven years ago. That's when Maeda and other young local business owners got together to talk about how they could serve their community. Maeda had CPR training and thought it would be a good idea to teach others.

Having given CPR lessons in the sento's changing room several times every year, it was a natural move for Maeda to bring an AED to his establishment.

 大星湯は7年前から人工呼吸や心臓マッサージの講習をしている。この町のために何かやれないか。若い経営者たちで話し合った時に、救命講習を受けたことのある前田さんが手を挙げた。受講生は銭湯のお客さんたちだ。年に数回、脱衣場が講習の場に変わる。AEDを置くのは自然な流れなのだ。

Between 20,000 and 30,000 people are said to suffer a cardiac arrest in or outside their homes in Japan every year.

Thanks to AEDs, two men survived their cardiac emergencies at the Aichi Expo site-one late last month and one early this month.

 自宅や路上で心停止をきたす人は年2、3万人といわれる。先月末と今月初めには、愛知万博の会場で、AEDが役に立ち、男性2人が命をとりとめた。

Hideo Mitamura, a cardiologist and deputy director of Tokyo's Saiseikai Central Hospital, said: "An AED is used before the ambulance arrives. Just as there should be a portable fire extinguisher in every home, ideally, every home should have an AED. But for the time being, the government ought to popularize the use of AEDs by requiring every koban (police box) and volunteer firemen's houses to keep one, which will bring the unit price down."

 東京都済生会中央病院副院長で、心臓病を専門にする三田村秀雄さんは「救急車が来る前に使うのがAEDです。将来は消火器のように一家に1台ほしい。行政が交番や消防団員宅に置き、普及を図るべきです。そうすれば値段も下がる」という。

An AED currently costs hundreds of thousands of yen. Maeda leases one for about 7,000 yen per month, but doesn't balk at the cost.

"My place is open until midnight," he said."I am glad to be able to position it as an emergency rescue base for the community."

 買えば数十万円。レンタルしている大星湯は月約7千円の持ち出しだ。それでも前田さんは「銭湯は深夜まで開いています。救急の地域の拠点になりたい」と話している。

--The Asahi Shimbun, June 20(IHT/Asahi: June 21,2005)

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2005/06/19

Beef safety must take priority over importsBeef safety must take priority over imports

 僕は英辞郎を使って英語を読みまくり、インターネットラジオのNHKのラジオジャパン英語ニュースで時事英語を聞きまくってます。(^^;また、VOAでヴォイスレコーダーにDLしたMP3音声とテキストも楽しんでます。
参考「こんな感じで英辞郎を使ってます

Beef safety must take priority over imports

06/14/2005

Shelf space for domestic beef is shrinking daily at meat stores around the country. Only limited selections of beef are available, and the cuts are expensive. The empty space is being filled with pork. Many people are making do with pork for their shabushabu and curry.

2005年06月12日(日曜日)付
【天声人語】

 精肉店で国産牛の売り場が日に日に狭くなっている。高くて品数も乏しい。代わりに豚肉が領土を広げる。しゃぶしゃぶでもカレーでも最近は豚肉を使う人が多い。

U.S. beef imports were suspended 18 months ago after a cow there tested positive for bovine spongiform encephalopathy, or BSE. Domestic beef prices meantime have continued to climb, hitting an all-time-high early this month, according to the agriculture ministry. The retail price of 100 grams of chilled sirloin is now about 704 yen, probably the highest ever.

 牛海綿状脳症(BSE)の発生で、米産牛の輸入が止まって1年半になる。国産牛の値段は上がり続け、農水省の週ごとの調査で今月初め、最高値になった。冷蔵ロース100グラムの小売値が全国平均で704円だった。食用牛の歴史に残る高値かもしれない。

For about a millennium from the Hakuho Period (645-710) to the end of the Tokugawa Shogunate (1603-1867), beef did not figure in Japan's culinary history.

After Emperor Tenmu, who reigned in the seventh century, issued an imperial edict that banned eating "cattle, horses, dogs, monkeys and fowl," meat-eating gradually became taboo.

 日本の牛肉史をさかのぼれば、白鳳から幕末まで千年を超す空白期がある。「牛馬犬猿鶏を食うなかれ」。天武天皇が勅命を出して以降、肉食は次第に禁忌とされていく。

The meatless diet dismayed Westerners visiting Japan. In "Nikushoku no Shiso" (Carnivore's philosophy), a Chuko Shinsho pocketbook, author Toyoyuki Sabata mentions Jesuit missionary Francis Xavier's complaint: "I can never fully satisfy my hunger because nobody in Japan eats livestock." Townsend Harris, the first U.S. consul general to Japan, made many diary entries lamenting the absence of beef from his table.

 日本を訪れた外国人は、肉のない食事に困り果てた。鯖田豊之氏の『肉食の思想』(中公新書)によると、宣教師ザビエルは「日本では家畜を食べないから口腹が満足しない」と嘆いた。幕末の米総領事ハリスの日記にも、牛肉を食べられない切なさが随所に出てくる。

With the lifting of the ban on meat-eating, the Meiji government started promoting meat consumption, but the masses were hardly eager to go along.

Many clapped their hands in prayer and recited Buddhist sutras before they took their first morsel of beef. But the popularization of gyunabe-similar to present-day sukiyaki-helped to establish beef in the Japanese diet.

 肉食の禁制が解かれたのは明治に入ってからだ。維新政府が盛んに勧めたが、庶民はなかなか踏み切れない。かしわ手を打ち、経文を唱えて牛肉にハシをつけた人々もいた。牛鍋の流行をへて、牛肉は食文化に地歩を築いていく。

In America, a second cow suspected of having BSE has been found. This is in the wake of repeated assurances of the safety of U.S. beef from President George W. Bush and his secretary of state, both of whom have pressed Japan to resume beef imports.

America's pushiness makes feel queasy. It's disappointing when gyudon beef-bowl chains don't serve gyudon and you can't order gyutan beef tongue slices at eateries specializing in them. But safety must come first, even if Japan has to be criticized for being as slow-moving and obstinate as a cow.

 米国でBSEの疑いのある2頭目の牛が見つかった。大統領や国務長官が口をそろえて「米産牛はもう安全」などと輸入再開を迫ったはずなのに。米国の強引さにはへきえきする。牛丼屋に牛丼がなく牛タン店に牛タンがないのは寂しいが、やはり安全本位で行きたい。牛の歩みと言われようと。

--The Asahi Shimbun, June 12(IHT/Asahi: June 14,2005)

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2005/05/24

Elderly need warm-up to face food hazards

 僕は英辞郎を使って英語を読みまくり、インターネットラジオのNHKのラジオジャパン英語ニュースで時事英語を聞きまくってます。(^^;また、VOAでヴォイスレコーダーにDLしたMP3音声とテキストも楽しんでます。
参考「こんな感じで英辞郎を使ってます

Elderly need warm-up to face food hazards

05/24/2005

The figure 8,570 bothers Yoshiharu Mukai, a professor at the Showa University School of Dentistry. This is the number of people who choked on food and died during 2003.

2005年05月23日(月曜日)付
【天声人語】

 8570人。昭和大学歯学部の向井美恵(よしはる)教授は、この数字が気になって仕方がない。食べものなどをのどにつまらせて亡くなった人の03年の数である。

That's more than 20 people a day, and most of them were 65 or older. Mukai specializes in oral hygiene and rehabilitation. ``Aging causes muscles in your mouth to deteriorate,'' he said. ``This prevents the proper swallowing of food. The food ends up getting into and blocking the trachea.''

 1日あたり20人を超える。その大半が65歳以上のお年寄りだ。口の健康とリハビリを専門にする向井さんは「年をとると、口の筋肉も衰える。食べものを食道にうまくのみ込めなくなって、気管に入ってしまうのです」という。

Mochi, the gooey rice cake eaten during the New Year's holidays, is the first thing I associate with choking on food. But mochi is definitely not the only hazard. According to the Tokyo Metropolitan Fire Department, ambulances respond to cases of choking all year.

A department official told me about a recent case. A man in his 80s fell unconscious while having a bowl of ramen noodles in a Tokyo eatery. An ambulance rushed to the scene, where a medic checked the old man and used a specially designed pair of tongs to dislodge a boiled quail's egg. The man regained consciousness before long.

 食べもので窒息といえば、正月の餅を思い起こすが、それだけではないのだ。東京消防庁に聞くと、救急車は一年中、出動する。つい最近も、都内の飲食店で80代の男性がラーメンを食べていて、意識を失った。駆けつけた救急隊員が口の奥をのぞき込む。ピンセットに似た専用の器具でつまみ出したのはウズラの卵だった。しばらくして意識がもどった。

``It's actually ordinary side dishes that are the most dangerous, more so than rice or mochi. In fact, mochi is the least dangerous of the three,'' the official noted. In other words, any food improperly swallowed can pose a potential hazard to the elderly.

 「おかず、ご飯、餅。この順で原因になることが多い」と東京消防庁の担当者。どんな食べものでも、お年寄りには油断大敵なのだ。

In Nagoya, a nursing home for the elderly was taken to court for serving konnyaku and hanpen for a meal. The former has a tough, gummy texture, and the latter clings to the inside of the mouth like a foamy sponge.

A 75-year-old resident, who was being fed these items by a staff member, choked to death. The court ordered the home to pay damages to the man's family, noting that anyone should know the risk of serving these items to the elderly. The nursing home appealed. The case was settled at an appeal court last month.

 こんにゃくとはんぺんは、名古屋で裁判にもなった。特別養護老人ホームで、職員に食べさせてもらっていた75歳の男性が窒息死した。こんにゃくなどはお年寄りに危ないことで知られていた。そう言って裁判所は老人ホームに賠償を命じ、先月、二審で和解が成立した。

Mukai recommends that older people do a little ``oral workout'' before they eat-a combination of movements including opening the mouth wide and then shutting it, and sticking out the tongue as far as it will go.

``It's a stretching exercise for your mouth,'' Mukai said.

I tried it, and when I opened my mouth really wide, I felt I was all ready to tuck into my meal.

 向井さんがお年寄りに勧めるのは、食べる前の準備体操だ。口を大きく開いたり閉じたりする。舌も思いきり突き出して動かす。口のストレッチ体操ですよ。そう言われて、口を大きく開けてみた。さあ、食べるぞ、という心構えもできる気がした。

--The Asahi Shimbun, May 23(IHT/Asahi: May 24,2005)

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2005/04/12

Freedom to travel a right to be enjoyed by all

 僕は英辞郎を使って英語を読みまくり、インターネットラジオのNHKのラジオジャパン英語ニュースで時事英語を聞きまくってます。(^^;
参考「こんな感じで英辞郎を使ってます

Freedom to travel a right to be enjoyed by all

04/12/2005

Miyako Okamura of Kyoto can walk no more than 3,000 steps a day. She cannot carry anything heavier than 2 kilograms. Lifting a suitcase, even for a second, is out of the question. Staircases are her most difficult hurdle.

Yet, she travels alone overseas almost every year.

2005年04月11日(月曜日)付
【天声人語】

 京都に住む岡村美弥子さんは1日に3千歩しか歩けない。重さ2キロ以上のものは持ち運びできない。スーツケースなどは、一瞬たりとも持てない。階段は大の苦手だ。それでも毎年のように1人で海外に出かける。

Six years ago, when Okamura was in her 40s and working for a travel agency as a tour conductor, she was diagnosed with hip disease and fitted with an artificial joint in her right hip.

Although she had to give up her job, she decided nothing would stop her from traveling for pleasure.

 股関節の病気で、右足に人工関節を入れたのは40代だった6年前だ。そのころ旅行会社で添乗員などの仕事をしていた。旅の仕事はできなくなったが、遊びでは行けるはずだ。そう思って工夫をこらす。

The strategy she worked out was this: First she calls a taxi, and asks the driver to carry her suitcase to the car. At the airport, she uses a baggage trolley as a walker. If there is a chance she may have to use a ramp to deplane at her destination, she arranges with airport personnel to have a lift waiting for her. Upon arrival at her hotel, she asks a valet to place her suitcase in a position that will make for easy opening and closing.

 スーツケースは自宅からタクシーの運転手に運び出してもらう。空港では台車につかまって歩く。到着地にタラップがありそうなら、リフト車で降ろしてくれるよう頼んでおく。ホテルの部屋では、開け閉めしやすいようにスーツケースを置いてもらう。

``In the past, an overseas trip was a bit of a risky gamble for people with disabilities,'' said Iichiro Kusanagi of Japan Tourism Marketing Co.'s Universally Designed Tourism Center. ``Nowadays, many people with disabilities go wherever they want to go, not just where they can go.''

Indeed, airports and train stations are today better equipped to aid people with disabilities, and airline companies and travel agencies have also gotten better at serving customers with special needs.

 「かつて障害のある人の海外旅行は冒険だった。今は、行けるところではなく行きたいところへ、と望む人も多くなった」と言うのはJTMバリアフリー研究所の草薙威一郎さんだ。空港や駅が使いやすくなり、航空会社や旅行会社の受け入れ態勢もかなり整ってきたという。

It was 10 years ago that the Tourism Policy Council of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport noted, ``Everyone has a right to travel ... . The freedom to travel is of special value to people whose movements are restricted, such as those with disabilities and the elderly.''

It depends on each person's type or degree of disability, but perhaps the ``right to travel'' is finally becoming real.

 「すべての人には旅をする権利がある」と政府の観光政策審議会が提言したのは10年前だった。「旅をする自由はとりわけ障害者や高齢者など行動に不自由のある人々にも貴重」と述べていた。障害の種類や度合いによって違いはあるだろうが、やっと「旅の権利」が現実のものになりつつあるということか。

Okamura would like to go to Mongolia this summer, but is still undecided. ``If suburban roads are bad, my artificial hip won't stand a chance. It is vital that I check such details before I go,'' she said.

 岡村さんはこの夏、モンゴルに行こうかどうか迷っている。「郊外への道が悪いと、人工関節がもたない。その見きわめが欠かせないのです」

--The Asahi Shimbun, April 11(IHT/Asahi: April 12,2005)

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2005/04/04

Japan's 'mask season' is a news item abroad

 僕は英辞郎を使って英語を読みまくり、インターネットラジオのNHKのラジオジャパン英語ニュースで時事英語を聞きまくってます。(^^;
参考「こんな感じで英辞郎を使ってます

Japan's 'mask season' is a news item abroad

04/04/2005
The Asahi Shimbun

Never before have I noticed so many people wearing masks as this year.

On one sunny, gusty day-the worst kind for pollen-allergy sufferers-I counted roughly one out of every four people on a commuter train wearing a mask.

2005年03月28日(月曜日)付
【天声人語】

今年ほどマスク着用率の高い年があっただろうか。花粉症の患者を泣かせる快晴で強風の日に、通勤電車の中で数えると、乗客のざっと4人に1人が着けていた。

Pollen allergy is not unique to Japan. But outside Asia, there are not many cities where you see so many mask-protected people in early spring.

"You hardly ever see anyone walking around like that here," said a Japanese man who works in Washington, D.C. Most pharmacies in the United States do not sell masks.

When he advised his allergic American colleague to try a mask, the colleague was horrified that it would make him look like a carrier of some serious contagious disease.

 外国にも花粉症はある。だがアジア諸国を除けば、春先にマスク姿が街にあふれる国は多くない。米ワシントンで働く日本人男性は「こちらではマスクで街を歩く人はついぞ見ない」と言う。米国では大半の薬局がマスクを扱わない。花粉症に悩む同僚の米国人にマスクを薦めたが、「重い伝染病の患者みたい」と嫌がられたという。

Another Japanese man, residing in Germany, noted: "In this country, people don't go to work if they are in a condition that requires wearing a mask. They just take the day off if they can't stop coughing or sneezing."

He added that he has never seen many people in masks in London or Paris.

 「マスクまでして出勤しない。この国ではせきやくしゃみが止まらない日は休む」。ドイツ在住の日本人男性も言う。ロンドンやパリでもマスク姿を大勢見かけることはないそうだ。

This makes Japan's "mask season" a news item in the Western world. A U.S. newspaper reporter described a horde of masked Japanese marching the streets and commented he thought he had run into a group of surgeons heading for the operating theater.

An Australian newspaper reported some years ago that such a sight could be taken for a mass anti-government rally by voters. The exaggerated tone seems to underscore the rarity of this phenomenon in Western culture.

 そのぶん欧米では、日本のマスクの季節が格好のニュースになる。歩道を行くマスクの群れを描写して米紙は「手術室に向かう外科医の集団かと思った」と伝えた。豪紙は数年前、「政府に抗議する有権者の一斉行動みたい」と報じた。大げさな書きぶりだが、よほど珍しいのだろう。

According to Hakujuji Co., a major sanitary goods maker established in 1896, masks became popular in Japan during the Spanish influenza epidemic from 1918 to 1919. Before that, masks were worn only by factory workers as a protection against dust inhalation.

The traditional mask is rectangular in shape and covers the nose and mouth, but the mainstream design today is oval-shaped for wider coverage from the nose to the chin.

 創業明治29年の衛生用品大手「白十字」によると、日本でマスクが普及したのは、スペインかぜが猛威をふるった大正半ば。それまでは工場労働者の粉じんよけだった。かつては口もとを覆う横長型が多かったが、いまは鼻からあごまですっぽり隠すカラス天狗(てんぐ)型が主流だ。

In Europe and America today, television and newspapers provide "pollen forecasts." But even though experts recommend wearing a mask to alleviate pollen-allergy symptoms, the custom has obviously not caught on yet.

 欧米でも近年は、テレビや新聞が「花粉予想」を伝える。専門家が「症状緩和にはマスクが効果的」と薦めてはいるが、普及の兆しはまだないようだ。

--The Asahi Shimbun, March 28(IHT/Asahi: April 4,2005)

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