08th 4月 2006

Prewar generation parents

My childhood
I was bored being in a Kimono shop owner’s family.
It was a hot day in July 19, 1975.
At that time, my father Sakae was 47 years old and my mother Keiko was 41, they already had two boys, one was 17 and the other was 13.
They were too shy to say they had a child again to my brothers.
So giving birth to me had been a secret.
The fist time my older bothers saw me they wondered if we had a new monkey as a pet. They already had a monkey and I looked like it according to them. (Please make sure to know that having a monkey in Japan is uncommon!!) (The monkey, Aki. Do I look like him?)
Prewar generation parents
Both Sakae and Keiko were born in Shikoku, a southern island in Japan, before WW2.
After WW2, Sakae moved to Tokyo to get a job. Afterwards, he met one woman who was not my mother and they had decided to get married.
In Japan, the custom is still working where grooms and brides ask their parents for their consent to marriage. Getting married is not a personal matter but a family one.
Therefore he went back to his house to get his father’s permission.
At that time, the US encouraged Japanese to go to church for postwar turmoil.
When he was in his hometown, he went to the church, Keiko was introduced to him by her friend who was the priest. She fell in love quickly.
The priest didn’t know why Sakae returned to his hometown. Oh God!
How Keiko got Sakae
The reason why my parents got married was because of Japan’s traditional family system.
As I said above, marriage has to be allowed by their parents.
Sakae’s father used to be a sergeant and was very strict and conservative.
Even through Sakae was not the oldest son (for patriarchal reasons, the oldest son’s wife is important), his father could not understand women who were living in the city and working.
On the other hand, my mother’s family runs the biggest liquor store in the town.
The daughter from such a famous family was welcomed!
( Our shop in around when I was bored)

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