Serge-san:A manga-lover’s view of Japanese BOSAI

【画像】Post: Road Management, MInistry of Public Works
Name: Mr.BOTRE Serge
Name of the Training Course: Disaster Management on Infrastructure (River, Road and Port) A
Training Period: 11 May 2015 - 18 July 2015

About me: family, how I became an engineer

Seminar for the Chiefs of Service on Road Maintenance

Youngest of three children, I was the most brilliant of my family in my generation. I did my classical studies in Catholic Christian schools (two of the greatest one in Haiti when I was young).
What influenced me to become an engineer is that I was very good in Math’s at school. In fact, I told myself that I should go to a faculty where I can learn more mathematics. So when I was in my educational final year, the Faculty of Sciences of the State University of Haiti organized a competition of mathematics. The school chose two of us to participate. After that, we had the opportunity to enroll in the faculty free. So, I thought if there’s mathematic here, it is an ideal choice for me to come to this faculty. So my friend and I and many others we enrolled in this option and some of us were able to attend classes, sometimes with great difficulty we succeed and sometimes we lose the pedal. In regard to me in general, I was a little vague as only math, drawings and computer interested me in college.

Seminar with colleague on Rural Access Index

Since I was in the classical school, I was very good in Math’s, sometimes even in physics and chemistry. I was always fascinated by science; I spent my time researching in encyclopedias, reading sciences books, and books about electronics devices (computers, telephones, video game consoles, etc.). When the day of my choice of profession arises, I went to an engineering school, saw that I was excellent in technical drawing, one of my teachers was an architect who had advised me to choose architecture; but I opted for civil engineering. By the way in the eyes of my friends in my neighborhood, they thought I was a computer engineer because I used to solve their computer problem, which made me like a self-taught computer engineer. This made me tell my classmates after college, I will work only on computer science; what I have not done since my first work was based on civil engineering. I am very happy to be an engineer because it makes me think differently when I see a house, a road, any structure...
My passion as a civil engineer is the calculation and field work. I usually do both but the field excites me more. While being on the field is not an easy job, you must have gall for it.

In regard to my work

Work Supervision

October 2013, I was promoted as the Chief of Service on Road Maintenance in my district. So, I had to investigate about the roads conditions, after I have to submit a report to my Departmental Director, who will submit another one to his superiors. After that the road sections in question were chosen and the Road Maintenance Funds have analyzed the report, so the policies about the road maintenance project will be established. After that, with my director, we have to manage the way we will proceed to execute the project by making a tender for the construction firms, by choosing small organizations for the light works and supervisors. Thus all firms, organizations and supervisors will be under my responsibility, and I must ensure that the works will be done well and in the proper period. Super visors will have to submit me every time reports about executed works so my Director and I can send them to the Road Maintenance Funds for payment if everything is correct.

Findings in Japan in daily life: about personal visits, etc.

Akashi Kaiyo Bridge with participants

Kobe Nunobiki Herb Garden

Todaiji Temple: deers

During this program, I had the great opportunity to learn a little bit of Japanese language which was very helpful for me. I just learn a lot about Japanese culture. The visit of different cities (Tokyo, Kyoto, Nara, Hiroshima…), sites (Common Duct, Shin-Meishin Expressway, Akashi Kaikyo Bridge…), a kindergarten school (Morigushi Kindergarden), museums (Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum…), gardens (Kobe Nunobiki Herb Garden…), temples and shrines (Heian Jingu-shrine, Kinkakuji-temple…), the Imperial Palace, I like them all. Thus, during the lectures I learned a lot about Japan in general, on the natural disasters and how to eradicate them.
Especially, Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum was a good place for me to visit because I knew the Sadako’s story before coming to Japan, but I would like to know more about it; so we were going to Hiroshima, so I asked Ms. Yagi san about the girl who should make one thousand origami; she informed me that I will know all when we reach the museum. It was a pleasure for me to read the entire story. I was a sad watching some pictures.
The temples in general I liked them, but I was impressed by the Todaiji with all the deer. I’ve tried Japanese food, and I recommend to everyone to try to, especially sushi.
By the way, I’m really impressed by how Japanese are very kind, respectful. Japan is a nice country covered by a lot of forest, parks and gardens. The road and rail network are fascinating due to the very narrow country, the houses and roads structure are have not to be seen just like that, because the way you design them against natural disasters is perfect. Japan is a safe area. Everything is well done and well organized. Finally it is a good place to visit and revisit.

How I knew this story before coming to Japan?

I used to read Japanese manga (Dragon Ball, Naruto...), and by reading one of them in (Naruto), I saw a kunoichi who was an expert in origami. Known as Konan, she’s an Akatsuki member with Yahiko and Nagato (Pain); these three Amegakure ninjas were trained by Jiraya sensei (from Konoha). She used her passion as her combat style during the Naruto series. And then, I did some research about the word origami to know the origin; so, I came across the Sadako’s story.

Message to the readers

Wear Yukata

Coming to Japan was a very nice experience for me because I could see what it is to work hard to get a better tomorrow. Not a tomorrow for you and your family but for your country also. Thus study in order to bloom beauty and quality in their work will make you a better life. I was a lazy man, but this experience will change me forever. I encourage you to make the choice to learn a lot more traveling, not only travel for tourism but rather for the study and tourism at the same time.
Japan is a great country where I learned a lot of new techniques during my program: hard measures and soft measures against natural disasters, soft ground improvement, disaster restoration methods, flood control… I used to work with some similar techniques to the Japanese methods, but I noticed that the Japanese methods I learned (especially on road maintenance) take less time to execute. Especially the do-nou methods, the way they use gabions, the retaining wall with block masonry, the road maintenance and road management… In fact, I thank the JICA that make me have the opportunity to assist this program.