Discover Nikkei

The way to play

Masons Group (from left): Genaro Yagui, Juan Uchima, José Akaogui, Miguel Hosaka, Alberto Nakaya, Teruo Okuma, Luis Iguchi, Daniel Kuriyama, Carlos Yamanija, Luis Miyagui, Manuel Tomioka, Carlos Saito and Alex Yamamoto

The years are what prolong our daily lives and teach us to continue fighting on the path of hope. And in what is worth mentioning for having in the past time that vice that is lavish in any concern of life that passes and leaves traces in our daily lives: sport.

Being on the path to eighty years is a magical way to contemplate our existence. Of wanting to do the same restlessness of our youthful years and contemplate that beyond our wait, life is worth continuing to play.

Our beloved AELU stadium shows us that people's concerns have nothing to do with age. We are figures who interact with the little ones and we think that young people have the same duty to learn as we did, when we interacted with our ancestors and we got confused at the age where they fought for their lives and their dreams.

Mentioning that an old “whatever his name” distracts his racket in a way to hit it is the step taken from one decade to another. It is to contemplate the difference that over the years the same will has us in the feeling of our days that go by. It is mitigating the dream of a oblivion that covers us and returning to hope when a memory fills us with joy and plunges us into nostalgia.

They tell us to be “careful,” but the creed of the first volley tempts us to finish the point. And that is when the will becomes a whim and lengthens the feeling of a near droop. We make up the sky and contemplate hope. Someone stumbled and fell flat on their face. The ball stayed still near the net. And the flow of our emotions is to feel what has been said that ours has at the end of a break the lethargy of a memory that gravitates on a reddish field.

Without a doubt, not all of us experience the feeling of age in the same way. The same game perhaps, the same need may be different. And the stumble, that is where the fall makes us feel, how heavy time becomes on the path of life. And we tell ourselves “let's be patient, tomorrow we will be back again.”

In soccer I have noticed that field #2, on Tuesdays and Thursdays, is filled with veteran players. “The morning people.” Envied by many in the feeling of the game, we know that the motto is to kick the ball however it comes at the whim of its path. Nine to nine, eleven to eleven, fifteen to fifteen or twenty to twenty. The number of players on the court does not matter. Will is the beginning of the game and relaxation. And I have noticed with joyful surprise that the trajectory of the ball is the one that goes from player to player and the goal is the victory of a well-traveled ball.

Whoever feels bad tomorrow, maybe it was because of the bullfight he did with her. These are the years, when the gravitation of the legs tells us that due to our age, we must design them well in the daily walk and at the end of a game. At the end of each match we feel that the taste of a match revives us with faith and hope and tells us that tomorrow will always be the day we have been waiting for.

Today the will accompanies us in every journey of our life. We have the motto of “working” on what we like. Doing nothing balances our life in bed and that causes us the displeasure of boredom. We just think that when we wake up every morning, friends will be waiting for us and the route of our beloved AELU will be in the layout that our ancestors left us.

The meeting will always be the pressure of time, whether because of our character or because perhaps forgetfulness is winning over us. And every Wednesday and Friday “The bricklayers” in the given time will look for the reason to return to their favorite sport. We will no longer see complete matches nor will we feel that the score is reaching the third set.

We simply take the racket, pocket the balls, form our pairs, serve, gravitate towards the game, try to return the ball and, between the distance and the game, we realize that for a little bit the point was ours. side.

On a Wednesday in June, courts #1 and #2 were filled with veteran players. Eight couples represented the feeling of returning to our past. Miguel Hosaka and Teruo Okuma, Alberto Nakaya and Daniel Kuriyama, José Akaogui and Genaro Yagui, Carlitos Yamanija and Luis Iguchi. Tempted by a past full of emotions, each one gravitated to the form of their game and the tenor of their physique. The count reached ten and that was the end of the match. The change was sudden and the break gravitated every ten minutes on the main bench. One by one, the hope of returning to our game made us see that the temptation of the years was to revive our current physique.

In the early hours of the morning, court #3 has its favorite tenants. The temptation to walk early and play at shared speed shows us that their physical condition is better than the previous group. Alejandro Chinen, Luis Miyagui, Enrique “Koe” Oyakawa and Juan Siu take the cake in every scheduled match. The fog often welcomes them on their early walk. And their reason for arriving early is the reward of often having two nice little ladies. Tomi Nakahodo de Robles and Jeannette Shimidzu.

And then came the “monthly lunch.” The one who was tempted by the saint was Carlitos Hayashida, the oldest active player at the age of 87 and present at the AELU Tennis Championships. Carlitos feels that his physique is respectable and, therefore, make it a championship match. It is looking back twenty years and saying with the frankness of the years “that time has passed but the virtue of playing does not end with me.”

The cake and the owner of the saint: Carlitos Hayashida, Luis Miyagui, Daiel Kuriyama and Carlos Yamanija.

The table accommodated 18 people of active and passive tennis players. The charm of the wines made the reflection of a life always “the friendship that covers the feeling of our lives.” Juan Uchima, Alberto Nakaya, Miguel Hosaka, Daniel Kuriyama, Carlos Saito, Luis Miyagui, Carlos Hayashida, José Akaogui, Alejandro Chinen, Carlos Yamanija, Hugo Miyadi, Manuel Tomioka, Genaro Yagui, Paco Miyadi, Enrique Oyakawa, Teruo Okuma, Alejandro Kamiyama and Luis Iguchi.

They had a discussion about our steps through life and the simple fact of sharing the table made us see that friendship and concern were the most precious gifts of our days. Twenty years or perhaps much more, with the “Grupo de los Albañiles”.

I feel, with pride, that the years will never pass in vain. If some of our friends are gone, they will be remembered in every thought and conversation. For some reason, human beings feel that every moment shared is the divine process of a friendship that is valued over time and distance. And everything that unites us in the memory of a set played or the momentum of a point well earned. Tennis will always be there to play.

© 2022 Luis Iguchi Iguchi

Lima Peru socialization
About the Author

Luis Iguchi Iguchi was born in Lima in 1940. He was a contributor to Perú Shimpo and Prensa Nikkei. He also wrote for magazines such as Nikko, Superación, Puente and El Nisei. He served as president of the Club Nisei Jauja in 1958 and was a founding member of Jauja N° 1 Fire Brigade in 1959. He passed away on November 7, 2023.

Updated December 2023

Explore more stories! Learn more about Nikkei around the world by searching our vast archive. Explore the Journal
We’re looking for stories like yours! Submit your article, essay, fiction, or poetry to be included in our archive of global Nikkei stories. Learn More
New Site Design See exciting new changes to Discover Nikkei. Find out what’s new and what’s coming soon! Learn More