Densho Digital Archive
Densho Visual History Collection
Title: Rick Sato Interview
Narrator: Rick Sato
Interviewer: Alice Ito
Location: Seattle, Washington
Date: March 2, 1998
Densho ID: denshovh-srick-01-0005

<Begin Segment 5>

AI: Well, now the Japanese families -- it sounds like you were busy all of the time with the farming. But did you ever have any Japanese community get-togethers?

RS: Oh, yes. They had Buddhist church in Wapato, and then they had a Methodist church there so they each went their own way. And they had their own activity, like, oh they had Bon Odori and a lot of that Japanese sukiyaki dinner and stuff like that. And the same token with Methodist people.

AI: What about at New Year's time, did you have any special New Year's oshougatsu kind of...

RS: Yeah, they some oshougatsu things there. But I don't remember too much about that myself.

AI: And what about your own family, did you celebrate anything like Boy's Day or Girl's Day at home?

RS: Well, they did celebrate that, but not like they do in Japan.

AI: Mm hmm.

RS: They mentioned Boy's Day and Girl's Day and a few things like that, but they never got involved too much. That's what I remember anyway.

AI: Are there any kind of either family or community get-togethers or celebrations that you, that kind of stand out in your mind from when you were a kid?

RS: Well, yeah. We had that mochitsuki. So people got together and done that, and then also you used to go back and forth for tea or something like that. And of course church had some doings, so people got together there.

AI: So you did have some breaks and some holidays in between all of...

RS: Oh yeah, over there during the winter you didn't have nothing to do. So you had all of the time in the world in wintertime. Although we were just going to school, we didn't have to come back and work in the evenings.

AI: And then you had mentioned going to Japanese school after your regular school. What did you do in Japanese school?

RS: Well, we learned how to read and write. And we -- I think we learned quite a bit, because myself I learned quite a bit, writing and reading. But right now, I don't, I can't, [Laughs] I can't say that for myself now.

AI: But when you were a kid...

RS: Yeah...

AI: You were pretty comfortable with it.

RS: Yeah, I was -- because my folks did not speak English, so I had to come home and speak that language. Which probably made it better, because you can understand, you know, you're talking it and using it all of the time. Now I don't use it so I've forgot.

AI: Well now, when you first started school, do you remember having any trouble with the English when you first started going to school?

RS: Yeah, we had trouble, because you're taking two languages at the same time. You had a little trouble with, well I'm going to say English, too, because you had a little accent there. And in Japanese I think, I think, we favored that because we were talking, using that at home all the time.

AI: Right.

RS: But, English, my folks didn't speak it, so even now they say I've got a little accent, some people say. [Laughs]

<End Segment 1> - Copyright © 1998 Densho. All Rights Reserved.