Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Asano Terao Interview I
Narrator: Asano Terao
Interviewers: Tomoyo Yamada (primary), Dee Goto (secondary)
Location: Seattle, Washington
Date: May 19, 1998
Densho ID: denshovh-tasano-01-0043

<Begin Segment 43>

[Translated from Japanese]

TY: As you said before, the Nichiren-shuu also had a meaning as a connection to the Japanese American community for you, but did you participate in other various events in the Japanese American community? There are many events such as Bon Odori.

AT: Yeah, after all...

TY: The community-wide activities.

AT: Oh, that, I used to go help them, but I haven't done recently. I don't do it any more.

TY: Then, your children danced, too, in Bon Odori?

AT: Sure, they dan -- danced. At that time, it was just the church, there were many ins and outs there, so the reverend said that he would be in trouble if we didn't come help him, so I said, "All right. I will go, I can do small things to help," and I helped them. Everybody changed into kimono, we changed kimono at the church. There were some people who came from home in kimono, there were people who changed into kimono in a church room and went out to dance. If we were not careful then, um, there were some people who stole things sometimes. [Laughs] Once, an offertory box, there was this big one there. The box, when the reverend got up in the morning and went to see it, it wasn't there. He thought it was strange, then the box, it was left on the second floor of the hall. Someone, it must have done by some young people. Then...

TY: You never found out who stole the money? You didn't know who took it?

AT: We didn't know. We didn't know. We had Bon Odori in front of the Nichiren church, someone did it then. So many people entered the building, right? That was when it was stolen. They stopped doing at the church since then. The practice was at the hall, too, everybody practiced, they did until the day of Bon Odori. Many people came for the practice. We went and danced, too, but I didn't dance even if I said so. I went because it was fun chatting with friends. Now I don't go there any more. I don't go, because they have it in front of the Buddhist Church.

TY: Please tell us the manner, the manner that you emphasized to your children, and also the things they couldn't say or the places they couldn't go, such things. What kind of places did you teach your children not to go?

AT: Hmm. That kind of things, the teacher taught them at the Sunday school. See, my children went to the Sunday school, right? Then, they taught things like if they went to this kind of places, they had to behave like this, or if they went to this kind of place, they had to do in this way, like this, I don't know now. Before, the wife of the reverend was a very good person. The wife was teaching, and the wife of the current priest is a good person, too, but she has children. I wonder how she is doing, I don't go to the church any more nowadays.

<End Segment 43> - Copyright © 1998 Densho. All Rights Reserved.