From the 3/11/2011 8.9 Eathquake off the coast of Japan we have this report from the rural city of Omihachiman:
“I was teaching 5 years olds. First day the mothers all decided to leave. Had been having dizzy spells all last month, people say maybe from hay fever. I thought it was coming back, but much worse. Whole building seemed to turn to slowly wobbling rubber. Very disorienting. Told the kids it was an earthquake and to get under the table. They were all like, ooh, this is FUN! and I was thinking. yeah, we’re all going to die and you can’t even understand the concept yet.”
Note that to the best of our knowledge there was no major damage or loss of life in the Omihachiman area and it is over 300 miles from the nearest failing nuclear reactor. Train service is normal.
More first hand reports of the earthquake from areas distant from Tokyo: http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/dyfi/events/us/c0001xgp/us/index.html