Heavy rain was pouring down. The sky was dark gray. I was standing at my kitchen window, looking down into the playground behind the house. The water was running down the slightly sloped way, into the playground. It was flowing into the children’s sandbox, forming a puddle in the sand, and seeped away. And I knew this meant that children would not play again in this sand.
Everything looked normal and peaceful; just like a usual thunderstorm. But this scene, more than 27 years ago, has remained in my memory, while the memories of many other days of falling rain have blurred and faded away. It was an eerie and creepy feeling to watch this rain, knowing it was contaminated with radioactive nuclides. When I see playgrounds in the rain, sometimes this memory comes up.
The playground would be closed for some time and the sand from the sandbox was to be replaced some time later. We abstained from certain foods for some time, especially milk products. Children were kept indoors. We avoided being exposed to rain.
Near the site of the explosion, people entered busses and where brought away, never to return.
(The pictures are from
They were taken in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone in 2013.)