Densho Digital Archive
Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre Collection
Title: Kimi Wakabayashi Interview
Narrator: Kimi Wakabayashi
Interviewer: Peter Wakayama
Location: Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
Date: January 10, 2005
Densho ID: denshovh-wkim-01-0004

<Begin Segment 4>

PW: And then you went to, to Saskatoon?

KW: Saskatoon.

PW: And then, and that was in 1933?

KW: 1933, I suppose.

PW: And how many families were in Saskatoon at that time?

KW: Saskatoon... let me see, now. Yeah, Nomura, Hoshi, and some Takemura, I think. Takemura. Maybe four, four family at that time, I think. Oh, some people at King George Hotel bellboy, Mr. and Mrs. Kitano, and Imamura. Yeah, I think three people working King George Hotel at that time.

PW: And at this time, your husband, Tokujiro, was he able to speak English quite well, then?

KW: Oh, he's pretty good.

PW: And why was that?

KW: Huh?

PW: And why was, how did he learn English?

KW: I think he came to Canada and I think he went to night school or something. Yeah. New Westminster or something.

PW: And he worked at some hotels?

KW: That is Calgary. Moved to Calgary and then he worked bellboy, I think. Vancouver just working sawmill or something.

PW: Oh, I see. So your husband worked in the sawmills when he first came.

KW: First came.

PW: And he was only nineteen. And he worked in the sawmills, and he worked in the logging camps?

KW: Oh, no, no. I came Canada, he already Regina. Yeah, yeah.

PW: So he was working in the clothing and fabric store when you were...

KW: Regina, we started --

KW: Regina when you got married.

KW: Yeah. Yeah, that's right.

PW: How did you relate to the hakujin people and did you have a lot of contact with the hakujin people?

KW: Oh, no, not Regina. Saskatoon dete kara no.

PW: In Saskatoon you had more contact.

KW: Yeah, yeah, contact. Not much. Well, my children start school, and that's neighbor or people, kids' friend, and meet everybody. Then I know gradually.

PW: So did you take any English class at all?

KW: Well, I went technical school night class, but maybe... how many times? Was too hard for me, so I quit. [Laughs] Very hard.

PW: So then did you just learn English by just talking to people, just gradually over the years?

KW: Still not good, but...

PW: Oh, I think it's very good.

<End Segment 4> - Copyright © 2005 Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre and Densho. All Rights Reserved.