Experiences in the inland colony (Japanese)

Living in a colony (Japanese) Life as a student in São Paulo (Japanese) Makegumi - Movement to regognize the defeat of Japan (Japanese) What prompted heavy religious involvement (Japanese) Experiences in the inland colony (Japanese)

Transcripts available in the following languages:

(Japanese) Well, whenever I talk about the time I lived in the back-country, everyone thinks I’m lying. After I left Guatapará, I moved from farmland to farmland, and while I did that, the war broke out. World War I started the same year that I came over to Brazil. That continued on for five years, and the year that the war ended, the coffee harvest was lost due to harsh frost.

So because of that, there was no work to be done on the farmlands, so I moved over to the colony. It was a British-style ranch near Rio Preto. It was 24 kilometers inland from the station, and in order to get there, it took two whole days (laughs)! We would take an oxcart, and we go through these areas—areas without any roads. We just rely on the ox’s legs to lead us in the right direction. And then, there is this river on the way. And yes, there’s no bridge across the river. We would then have to move further upstream until we get to an area safe enough to cross. After we get to the other side, then we have to go this-a-way, that-a-way, and then continue on… Anyway, things like that would happen, and it would take two days to move 24 kilometers (laughs). But when we got there, it was a type of colony where mountain lions would lurk around at night. And at dawn and dusk, a flock of Arara (Amazona parakeets) would screech overhead (laughs). And back then, at night, monkeys—about fifty of them—would come close to the houses, screaming. That’s the kind of place I entered into (laughs).

It’s hard to believe such a story, isn’t it? Nowadays it’s become a story of the past… but I can say I had a good, a very good, experience in Brazil, and I am so grateful that I came to Brazil.

Location: Brazil
Contributed by: Caminho da memória - 遥かなるみちのり. São Paulo, Brazil: Comissão de Elaboração da História dos 80 Anos de Imigração Japonesa no Brasil, 1998. VHS.

Brazil coffee farming guatapara

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