At house washed away, Japanese widow concludes: 'This, is life.'

SENDAI, Japan (AP)

She scanned the landscape of debris and destruction, looking at the patch of earth where Japan's massive tsunami erased her son's newly built house so thoroughly that she can't even be certain where it once stood.

Satako Yusawa teared up but pulled herself together quickly. Because for the 69-year-old widow, there was this to be thankful for: Her son and his family were out of town when Friday's offshore, 8.9-magnitude quake sparked huge surges of water that washed fleets of cars, boats and entire houses across coastal Sendai like detritus perched on lava.

But her son had borrowed a lot of money to build that house, and had moved in only last month.

"This," she said, "is life."

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