Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Yukiko Miyake Interview
Narrator: Yukiko Miyake
Interviewer: Sara Yamasaki
Location: Seattle, Washington
Date: June 4, 1998
Densho ID: denshovh-myukiko-01-0019

<Begin Segment 19>

SY: Well, you mentioned one time that there was a very different way Isseis communicated as opposed to the way Niseis communicated, and you had given me some examples. One was when after you just lost your daughter and...

YM: I think there is a difference when the Isseis communicated. I don't know how to explain it, but I will say in my circumstances, I felt that Isseis were kinder. They showed their feelings toward me. They were kinder to me, but the Niseis, maybe they wanted to show it, but all they would say is, "I'm very sorry" or something like that, but Isseis -- I don't know how to explain it. Was there something behind what they said? I don't know, but I remember one lady, Mrs. Otani, she used to bring mochigashi to me. She used to come down to Jackson Street once a month or once in two month, and she always brought me a little dish of mochigashi and give hotokesama agete choudai. And Niseis didn't do that. I'm not saying it's against them, but that was, that's the difference. Or Issei would make osushi and they'll bring it to me and, "Tonight kore tabenasai." Or I remember one lady bringing me vegetables or strawberries, but the Niseis, maybe they do it now, but at that time I find that the Niseis didn't do that. All they did say was, "I'm sorry." I felt because of that, there was such a difference. Maybe there isn't. Maybe Nisei nowadays might be entirely different. I don't know. But when you have a small family like I did -- I didn't have much of a family -- so you appreciated it or maybe the Niseis felt that I had lots of it so they didn't feel like doing it. But I remember going to a memorial service for Kako. Well, it wasn't for Kako. It was for some kind of a memorial service at Washelli, and the Issei ladies would come and say, "How lonely you are," and, "I'm very sorry for you," and they shake my hand or they hold my hand, but the Nisei didn't do that. In fact, to this day I remember two of the Niseis came up to me and said, "How come you're dressed like that?" And I felt like saying, "Well, it's none of your business." I could dress, but I didn't say it. [Laughs] They will never come to Takano Studio after that, but... I never said it, but maybe they were -- Niseis were able to talk out things more so they were able to say things and the Niseis -- maybe the Isseis felt the same, "How come she is dressed like that?" I was all in black and maybe that was... well, I didn't see anything wrong in that, but I was all in black. Maybe the Niseis, these people that I knew, felt that I shouldn't dress like that. I don't know. I really don't know, but the differences... they don't have to say much, but they hold my hand and they bring me things, maybe they brought me things, maybe I thought more of them. I don't know. But I did appreciate it though because I always felt how kind that they remembered because I'm not the only one that had lost a child. There were others.

SY: That's interesting.

YM: Yeah, but that's the difference. And I don't know about now. I know my friends are all so kind to me. I don't feel -- well, I hope. In a way, I wish they would become like Isseis, not the gossiping part, but bringing things over. I think that's so sweet. That's nice. I liked it and so I always, as I got over my loss, I used to take things over. And, of course, my cooking wasn't the best so I'm sure they didn't eat much of it, but they liked it.

Yukiko M. Interview - Copyright © 1998 Densho. All Rights Reserved. - <End Segment 19>