Free dumplings for motorists stranded in snow

When the going gets tough, the tough get going. Record levels of snowfall made the going tough for hundreds of motorists in Japan earlier this week. Blizzards, snowdrifts and frozen roads left 200 cars stranded on a highway in Fukui Prefecture, along the Sea of Japan. This spurred the manager of a branch of a local Chinese restaurant, Gyoza Ohsho, to get going. Keiichi Iwatani, 39, decided to feed those faced with spending the night in sub-zero temperatures. He delivered hundreds of gyoza dumplings, fried rice and crab omelettes to weary, anxious and snowbound drivers. Seven employees helped him to deliver the provisions on foot throughout the night to 300 hungry and relieved people.

Mr Iwatani talked about his relief efforts to the Mainichi newspaper. He said he saw the snow accumulating and knew there would be problems. He said similar adverse weather hit in 2018 and the snow stopped him from getting to work. He said: "I regretted not being able to help out three years ago. I'm happy that many people appreciated our efforts last night." He added: "I wanted to keep drivers warm, even for just a bit." Many drivers were appreciative of his efforts. Yuki Yamashita, 23, feared the worst when she got stuck in the snow. She said when Ishitani appeared, he restored her faith in humanity. A fellow driver shared some Habutae mochi – a traditional Fukui rice confection – with her to reinforce that faith.