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Tweet of the Week #88: Shooting Star Lights Up Tokyo Before Crashing With a Bang

Did you see that?!

By 4 min read

Tokyoites were in for quite a scare early Thursday when a shooting star lit up the sky across the Kanto region before crashing with a very loud bank around 2:32 a.m.

We have to thank famous digital artist Kagaya Yutaka for catching this beautiful video of the meteor flying from west to east, illuminating the clouds with a blue-green light, brighter than the moon itself. Particularly fond of astronomy, his most famous artworks focus on exploring the sky and far away galaxies, so he always records the starry sky from his balcony.



“On July 2, 2020, at 2:32, a very large fireball (probably a bright meteor) flew from west to east. A few minutes later, I heard a roar that could be heard indoors, which may be relevant. The video plays at the actual speed. It was taken from my balcony.”

A lot of people reported hearing a loud explosion on social media, wondering if there was thunder or possibly their neighbors. Some residents, spooked by the explosion sound which had their windows shaking, made emergency phone calls to the Tokyo Metropolitan Police.

One year ago, another meteor flew above Japan early in the morning and hit the Earth in a loud bang that woke up folks in Kagawa Prefecture. The fireball was spotted from Shikoku, Chugoku, and Kansai.






“One year ago, a similar event happened.




This year’s fireball, estimated to be less than one meter in diameter, is believed to have been a fragment of a larger shooting star. But Twitter peeps were quick to bring up theories of their own.





“Please be careful,

There’s the possibility it’s an attack from the Saiyans… They’re probably… stronger than us.”






“J: Oy K, seems like many people heard the sound of and even witnessed a fireball near Tokyo.

K: Don’t worry kiddo. If everyone watches SkyTree, they’ll forget for good. SkyTree was created for this purpose.”

No shooting star can fly above Japan without people bringing up Kimi no Na Wa (Your Name).




“Is it true a meteor fell in Tokyo?

That’s Your Name for real.”

Tanabata Festival

Coincidentally, this astronomical event happened not too far from July 7, which marks the beginning of the Tanabata festivities also known as the Star Festival. The festival is based on the Chinese legend of Princess Orihime and Hikoboshi, two star-crossed lovers separated by the Milky Way and only able to meet once a year when a magical bridge forms on the 7th day of the 7th month.

Japanese adverbs to express probability 多分たぶん and おそらく

While these two Japanese adverbs can overlap in many situations, they do hold some nuance that can make one more appropriate than the other depending on the situation.

多分, which is the most common adverb and can be found in textbooks for beginners, expresses a probability with high chances. This adverb is neutral, meaning the speaker doesn’t convey any particular emotion and is calculating the chances that something may happen or not.

おそらく, however, is slightly more sophisticated and does have an emotional nuance. The speaker who uses おそらく is afraid or suspects that something might or might not happen. To avoid making any mistake on the context, keep in mind that you can translate おそらく as “I fear that…”

Both adverbs are often used with the suffixes でしょう (polite) or だろう (casual) which marks the speaker’s uncertainty or doubt.


Japanese Romaji English
さきほど sakihodo a while ago
東京とうきょう上空じょうくう toukyou jyoukuu above Tokyo
非常ひじょう hijyou in extremely
おおきい ookii big
火球かきゅう kakyuu fireball
おそらく osoraku probably
あかるい akarui bright
流星りゅうせい ryuusei shooting star
西にしからひがし nishi kara higashi made from west to east
数分後すうふんご suufungo a few minutes later
こえる kikoeru can be heard
轟音ごおおん gooon roar
関係かんけいがある kankei ga aru be related to (something, an event)
かもしれません kamoshiremasen maybe (I think)
ベランダから benranda kara from the balcony
satsuei suru shoot
1年前いちねんまえ ichinenmae a year ago
おなことある onaji koto aru same thing happen
爆発音ばくはつおん bakuhatsu on explosion sound
おと oto noise
隕石落下いんせきらっか innsekirakka meteor fall
をつけてください ki o tsukete kudasai Please be careful
可能性かのうせい kanousei possibility
おそらく osoraku probably
つよ tsuyoi strong
近辺きんぺん kinpen neighborhood
大勢たいせい taisei many
目撃者もくげきしゃ mokugekishya witness
わすれる wasureru forget
このために kono tame ni for that purpose
つくられる tsukurareru be made
マジ maji really, for real?
リアル riaru real
きみ kimi no na ha Japanese title of the animation movie Your Name
多分たぶん tabun probably

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