Yutaka (Coby) and Yone Kobayashi
Interviewer: Marilyn Clayton (for the Britannia Heritage Shipyard Project)
Recorded at Britannia Heritage Shipyard, Richmond, B.C., September 17, 1991
(Project) Tape No. 108:1
MC: Now you don't have to worry about leaning close or anything just so long as we're standing right here.
CK: No, of course, all right.
MC: Now tell us about that, the air right now is ripe with the smell of fish.
MC: What can you remember about that?
CK: Well, I think they were going to put the reduction plant, at the Imperial Cannery and we had 2 1/2 acre property right behind them. And they said, ""Oh no, you don't have to worry about smells, it will all be filtered through the water."" But when the south wind blew, my goodness, you know, it was really bad.
MC: What year would that have been, do you remember?
CK: Oh, that was around 19.., I would say around 1935 or 6.
MC: Okay. It curled your hair did it?
CK: Yeah, well, the smell, maybe a little worse than this, maybe.
MC: Oh gosh. Yeah.
CK: Yes well, I was born here on the dyke side between (Britannia Shipyard & wharf), we used to call Ben Cannery. (Pacific Coast Cannery).
CK: Okay, and then Britannia machine works. And we're on the dyke side and of course our house was on stilts. On the windy night, you could hear the logs bouncing against the stilts, rocking the house.
MC: You could hear the waves underneath?
CK: Oh, the waves, sure. We had a boat house and a slip there, and I used to slide down the slip every once in awhile. In fact, my mother had to wade up to her chin to save me one time, I just slipped right down and then I was floating down Fraser River.
MC: Oh really, Oh my gosh. Well, now we've met another fellow, his name is Gerry Miller, does that....
CK: Gerry Miller. No, I can't remember.
MC: And he lived sort of down, I think at the foot of No. 2.
CK: Oh, No. 2, oh yes.
MC: I'll throw out another couple of names and see if you recall.
MC: Jim Kishi.
CK: Oh yeah, Kishi, Kishi, they had the boathouse, the boatworks down....
CK: .... by the way there.
MC: And actually another one just over there, we'll walk over in that direction.
CK: Sure, right.
MC: In a little while so... What we want to get from you is if you could, sort of, relive what it would be like when you were living here as a child. Now you say your home was right on the water up on stilts?
CK: Right, right on the water yes.
MC: Were there a lot of children around?
CK: Oh yes, lots of children.
MC: Lots of children.
CK: Yes, about my age. I was born in 1920, October the 30th.
MC: Getting close to a birthday.
CK: Oh right.
MC: You're just about a halloween baby.
CK: Yeah, just about. One day difference. We had, we had the house on this side but we had the chicken house on the other side. We had chicken, eggs.
MC: Okay, now the chickens, did you supply eggs for other people?
CK: Well, if we couldn't use it all, certainly they used to come and buy it from us.
MC: Okay. And there was a store down there, wasn't there?
CK: Hong Wo, yes, yes.
MC: Hong Wo. Now would that have been where you bought some of your stuff?
CK: Yes, I used to go there for ice cream and.... My father used to bring home pop and there was a deposit on pop bottles, so I used to take it back and get ice cream for it.
MC: So was your father, was he a fisherman?
CK: He was a fisherman, yes. He was a fisherman.
MC: What do you do or what was your profession?
CK: Oh well, actually I was born in 1920. So I was here 'til we bought the farm across from Steveston Community Centre. We bought 2 1/2 acres, 2 1/2 acre farm and we moved there. I think we bought it in 1926, and we moved there in 1928.
MC: And then did you, you farmed then?
CK: Yes, well my, my parents farmed and fished too, at the same time. We used the, we used the old house and the, the dock outside, for fishing nets, mending fishing nets, and we used to tie our boats. Until about 19.., I would say around 1933 or 34 when the whole house went down.
MC: Oh, were you in it?
CK: Oh, no, no, no, no, no, no, we have moved by then. We moved in 1928 so we were just using it as a storage for our nets and net repairing on the wharf.
MC: Now that would have been a wooden boat? Is it? A wooden boat?
CK: Oh yes, right, right.
MC: Was it built right around in this (area)?
CK: Yes, right. We had one that was built in around 1930. We had a packer. My brother used to, one of my brothers used to collect for Phoenix. The name of the boat was Sunbeam.
MC: Sunbeam, okay. Do you know who built it?
CK: Sunbeam was built by, I think it was Mukai.
MC: Murakami. Great, that's one of the things I wanted to ask you. Evidentially the Murakami family had a boatworks on the site. Do you remember that?
CK: Yes, my brother... I think it was a little further. Who you should ask is Murakami, Kiyoshi Murakami at the corner of Railway and Moncton.
MC: You know what, that's exactly what we've been trying to find out.
CK: North. No he's at south (correction: north) east corner. That used to be old, what's his name... Matsuba, Matsuba farm. I think Ross Matsuba lives here on Moncton Street. Ross Matsuba. Okay 3000 block Moncton. So Murakami, he was (fishing for) Phoenix, he was living down, down a bit that way on Phoenix and he was sort of... (His parents) came from the same part of Japan as my parents. So we got together and bought the farm there. So we had the farm, next farm was Murakami, and the son, Kiyoshi is here, and then the next farm was Nishii, N-I-S-H-I-I. I think there is Kat Nishii, Kichiji, we used to call him, Kichiji, but I think you know him by Kat Nishii. And then there was another farmer Murakami. So we bought about 10 acres all together and they divided into four lots, 2 1/2 acres each.
MC: Would that be the other side of the dyke then?
CK: Its on the other side of the dyke, across from, across from the community centre, Steveston Community Centre.
CK: Moncton Street.
MC: On Moncton.
CK: Right. So our house was one hundred ten Moncton Street and we built, my parents built a home there, a nice pick stucco home in 1937.
MC: And then that would be where you grew up, did you?
CK: That's where I grew up.
MC: And did you go to school right around here?
CK: I went to Lord Byng Public School and I went to Richmond High School and then I went to UBC.
MC: Did you? What did you study there?
MC: So that's what you ended up being in, did you?
CK: Well, I'm in financial planning right now. Selling mutual funds and things, life insurance.
MC: You're just out on a bit of a holiday right now, are you?
CK: Well, my, our son got married. He's in Vancouver, out in Vancouver, he's a doctor. Robert Kobayashi. He got married to Margaret MacIntyre. (MacIntyre, who is also a doctor. They graduated together from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ont.)
MC: Macintosh is an apple right. Oh, this is just terrific that you came here.
CK: Our daughter is out here too. Her name is Cassandra Kobayashi. You have probably heard her name.
MC: Cassandra, I have.
CK: Cassandra, she's a lawyer. She was one of the lawyers for, negotiating lawyers, for the redress. And she's out here.
MC: Oh, what a very interesting family you have. Now your mom and dad, they, did they come directly from Japan to this area, or did they...
CK: Right, I think yes, my mother. I think that's what happened, that's what happened, yes.
MC: Was your dad a fisherman in Japan too?
CK: No, no, he was born on a farm.
MC: So when he came here he just moved to the river front...
CK: Right, right.
MC: ...and took up fishing?
MC: Did he ever tell you about that, what made him decide to...
CK: Well, I guess, it was a way of making a living, I guess. And he used to hire a lot of people to, to fish for him. So we had, we ended up with 2, 3, three fishing boats and a packer.
MC: Do you remember the names of them? You said Sunbeam.
CK: Sunbeam I, Sunbeam II, and then the other one, I think we just had K.K. on it.
MC: K.K. Okay. So do you remember about how many children were on the site? Can you recall?
CK: On the site?
MC: Well, here. Like when I talk about the site, I talk about Britannia.
CK: Britannia, oh Britannia, gee, I can't remember now how many. Britannia goes how far?
MC: Well, down to... We'll walk down that way,...
CK: Okay, sure.
MC: ...down to the fence where the Phoenix cannery is.
CK: Oh, down to the fence. There weren't too many. Past the fence there were more.
MC: Do you remember a Mr. Shorey?
CK: Sure, oh yeah. He used to run the, George Shorey used to run the machine shop here. Shorey sure. Oh yeah, George Shorey.
MC: And he had a daughter, Barbara, do you remember....
CK: I can't remember Barbara. I don't know how old she is but ...
MC: She'd be, I'm not exactly sure of the age but she'd probably be in that era too.
CK: Shorey, oh yeah sure. George Shorey, he used to run the machine shop here, I remember him.
MC: For sure. What about... Now as a youngster you probably just played around here?
CK: Oh yes, we played around here.
MC: What kind of things would you do?
CK: Well, hide and go seek. (Played house with girls, 5 or 6 years old. Played tag, played with wooden swords, marbles.)
MC: Play out the, I think there used to be a net rack over there, on... There used to be, on the other side of this building here.
CK: Well, as I say we had a house on the wharf and a net rack too on the wharf, yep. Until it came down. But I don't know what happened after that. Until I came back here in 19... When was the first time, was it 1954 when I first came here? I think it was.
YK: It was yes.
CK: But I can't remember what it was like in 1954. There might have been net racks there.
YK: Every sunday you used to go floating down the river and your mother had to rescue you. In your sunday school clothes.
CK: In my sunday school clothes. After sunday school I'd come back and then you know, I'd go in the back, then I'd fall in.
MC: And that's when your mom had to go and rescue you?
CK: Right, right. Used to see a lot of swallows here. Actually, this place was full of swallows nesting underneath.
MC: Under the pilings?
CK: Under, oh yes, under the wharf, under the building.
MC: We see, we see seagulls here, and inside there's an owl, a barn owl. He's not there today but we haven't seen that many swallows.
CK: Swallows, my goodness, this place used to be full of swallows.
MC: It did?
CK: Actually right along here. But you don't see any swallows. [I remember when] we were back here in '54, there were quite a few.
YK: There were, quite a few, yeah.
MC: Do you remember any storms, or what was the weather like when you were growing up around here?
CK: Well, I guess we used to have our share of storms, oh yes.
MC: Any, any in particular that you remember?
CK: No, I can't remember any in particular, but... I was used to walking around like that in the storm and the logs used to bang against, against the piles.
MC: Logs floating up the river?
CK: Yes, well they will come in and get underneath the house. And they would be banging against the piles.
MC: Be good for ghost stories.
CK: Oh yeah, and the house would be creaking, creaking, creaking.
MC: So you had two brothers, did you?
CK: I had three brothers.
MC: Three brothers. So you grew up in a home of four boys?
CK: Four boys and two girls.
MC: And two girls. Oh boy.
CK: My sister is here in Surrey. She's married to Nagasaka. He's Masa Nagasaka. Her name is Shigeko. Of course my name, I go by Coby Kobayashi, but my, my given name was Yutaka.
CK: Yutaka Kobayashi.
MC: We met another Yutaka. Yutaka Mizuguchi, Mizuguchi.
CK: Mizuguchi, Mizuguchi, it could be.
MC: They call him Lanky now.
CK: Oh yes, I saw that, yes.
MC: Do you know that person, Lanky?
CK: I don't know. Because they all got their nicknames, and...
MC: Now Yutaka, is there a counterpart to that in english? Like does it mean something that we would recognize?
CK: No, you wouldn't recognize. But....
MC: So is Coby a nickname?
CK: Coby is nickname, yes. Yutaka is my given name. Yutaka means, in Japanese, its rich and not in the sense of money. But shall we say.... How would you say?
CK: More or less.
MC: It sounds like it fits. I'm just going to take a peak through some of the questions I've got here.
CK: Sure, okay.
MC: Now there is a house or a building down the way that we call the Japanese duplex. Do you remember Japanese families living in homes right along the water front here. Like up close, on this side of the dyke.
CK: On this side of the dyke?
CK: Oh yes, I remember. There used to be a store there too.
MC: Oh good, can you tell us about that.
CK: Gee, I've forgotten the name of the person that owned it.
MC: Tell us what was in the store then, maybe it will come back.
CK: It was a Japanese store, so it was a Japanese store.
MC: Okay, now who was it, Barbara Shorey told us she used to buy candy in there.
CK: Oh yeah, candies just like Hong Wo. Hong Wo is Japanese store but this was much smaller store of course. Candies and...
MC: Pop and...
CK: ...pop and things like cigarettes.
MC: Okay, okay. Did you ever come in the boatworks here?
CK: Oh yes.
MC: I know you said you knew Mr. Shorey.
CK: Oh, he used to chase us out of here all the time. (correction: His carpenter, a tall and lanky fellow, who we nicknamed ""Buri, Buri"", and rather mean, used to chase us out of here all the time. Mr. Shorey was always a gentleman, as I remember. He never chased us out.)
MC: Okay, what were you doing to be chased out?
CK: Well, we used to be curious and come in here, looking in. He would just clap his hands and we would go running. Don't forget that we were only about 5 or 6 years old.
MC: Well, who were some of your play mates down here? Can you recall their names?
CK: Well, I guess, I guess like... Well, I guess Shoji Minamide. Shoji Minamide is the nickname of, no given name of Shoji but they used to call him Tie, Tie Minamide. Who used to, who else used to, did we used to play with here? Oh, my goodness the name, names... (Mina Furuya, Mich Mori, Shigeru Nogami, Tomoto children, Nishi children, Kaz's family.)
MC: Don't worry about it, it might come back. Another fellow we've spoken with is Jimmy Hing. Did you ever...
CK: Jimmy Hing?
MC: Yes, he's a chinese fellow.
CK: Chinese fellow, yeah.
MC: And he used to work in the cannery, down the way.
CK: I can't remember about that no.
MC: But you do remember Jim Kishi then, do you? Or....
CK: Well, I know, I know Kishi Boatworks, yes.
MC: Kishi Boatworks.
CK: Don't forget I'm 71 now. I will be 71. So if you're talking about people who are 30 or 40 years old, I would not remember.
MC: No, Jim Kishi would probably be late 60's.
CK: Probably his given name was... Was it Kiyoshi? Late 60's.
MC: Yeah, he's in his 60's anyhow. And he had a.....
CK: Right, right. Japanese name, I probably know him by Japanese name.
MC: Probably yeah.
CK: I think there was a Kiyoshi Kishi. And there was Yamanaka Boatworks too, down, down, down the way here.
CK: Near Phoenix.
MC: I tell you what, I'm going to turn this off now. And....
Tape turned off.
MC: Okay, tell me. There used, used to be what? What did you say there was in here?
CK: There were wheels here and a belt driving all these lathes and different things.
MC: Do you remember any of the people who worked in here? Do you remember their names?
CK: No, I can remember only Shorey.
MC: Okay, because you would have been just a little boy at the time. Right, okay.
CK: Oh yeah, sure. My older brother would know.
Tape turned off.
MC: Okay, this boardwalk, do you remember that?
CK: Yes, oh certainly, I used to deliver the newspaper around here.
MC: Did you? I'm not sure how safe it is to walk on here so we'll just have to watch our step real careful. You used to deliver newspapers?
CK: Newspapers, yes.
MC: Okay, don't move away from me too far or else I won't catch you, okay.
YK: What we used to do was deliver newspapers, we used to have a hot potato. Was it? In your jacket.
MC: What's that? Where did you... Like in your....
YK: Inside his windbreaker.
YK: To keep his....
MC: Against your tummy?
YK: To keep himself warm, yes, in the winter time.
CK: Some of the, some of the (spaces between the) boards were wide, and our (bicycle wheel) kept falling in and I would flip right over.
MC: Oh no. Did you ever remember the waves coming up high and splashing you? Yeah.
CK: On this side we had the ditch along there and the dyke along there and the dyke and the ditch and this part used to get flooded quite, quite often.
CK: In fact over there we had... In that bush there's a fellow by the name of Shaw used to live there. James Shaw would be about 82 or 83 now. And we used to go there for, Mrs Shaw used to give us cookies, gingerbread cookies.
MC: Now that would be in that tree grove area?
CK: Yes, in the grove area. Yes.
MC: Shaw. And what was his name?
CK: James Shaw was their son.
MC: Okay, so you played with James then did you?
CK: I didn't play with James, but I think my brother did, and he could speak Japanese because his playmates were Japanese.
MC: Oh, isn't that great.
CK: He was one of the fellows who could speak Japanese. Another fellow that could speak Japanese was the fellow that owned the hotel there. What was his name now? Hotel, Steveston Hotel.
MC: Oh, I don't know.
CK: Years ago.
CK: I forget his name now.
MC: Now this is one of the things I wanted to ask you about, now does this ring any bells. Like if you look at that what can you remember.
CK: Sure. I can't remember this.
MC: Now it was Jim Kishi who thought that this boatworks here was the one run by the Murakamis.
CK: Murakami, could be.
MC: You remembered that name, do you?
CK: Murakami, yes.
MC: Murakami. Now do you know where the Murakamis lived?
CK: They lived behind the boathouse.
MC: Okay, okay. Not here? We thought possibly...
CK: No, Murakami, if it was Murakami. Our Sunbeam II was built by Murakami.
MC: Okay. And that was a different location was it?
CK: I think it was. It might have been here. It might have been here, yes.
MC: Do you have any pictures? None at all, okay.
CK: No, no I don't think so. I think we left it all in the house when we left.
CK: Its all gone.
MC: Its all gone.
CK: If it was the Murakami's they used to live behind here in row houses.
MC: Okay, Now you mentioned a little store. Can you remember where that one was now?
CK: Store, it was on...
MC: Would it have been maybe around in here, is that possible?
CK: Yeah, that's possible.
CK: I forget the name of the people that used to run that. (Store run by Takagaki)
MC: I think it started with a M. I got, somebody wrote it down on a map one time, but I don't have it with me. What about this long building here, do you remember that one? The long...
CK: I don't remember that too well, no.
MC: Okay, well you know we've, we've been told that this building used to be at the back of the site, used to be right up against the dyke and that it was relocated here.
CK: Okay, that's the reason why I can't remember it.
MC: So it don't ring, ring through.
CK: Are these the ones that the chinese used to live in?
MC: Could be. Whatever you think. We're trying to...
CK: I think they were the ones that the cannery used to hire. The chinese labour and they used to call them cut the fish, cut the fish, cut the fish.
MC: So they came here seasonally for...
CK: Seasonally. They were seasonal workers, yes. Just like Hong Wo, just like Hong Wo's General Store, that was where people used to come seasonally. For doing (farm and cannery) work.
MC: Okay, I think there was a big cook house there too, wasn't there?
MC: Now this is another building right here we're going to look at. We call this building No. 10. This one here. Now the outside of it, right now, has, its got metal siding on it. But underneath its an old building just, just like these. Can you remember? We were under the impression that it could have been a Japanese lodging.
YK: Is this the original site?
MC: Yeah, Yeah. It was here, it just didn't have the metal on the outside.
CK: Tanino, I think Tanino used to live somewhere in this area.
MC: How would you spell that?
CK: Tanino, T-A-N-I-N-O.
MC: Okay, Tanino. So this is where the site ends, see where this fence is, and the gate.
CK: Oh right. Oh, that's where it ends.
MC: Yeah. And I think the Shorey house used to be over in there.
CK: Over in there, yeah, right.
MC: So it that where you stole the pears?
CK: Un hum. Actually my parents used to buy the winter keeps.
CK: [We used to] buy a tree for, lets say $5.00 or something. We'd pick them and store them.
MC: And you called them winter keeps?
CK: Well, winter keeps.
MC: Oh that's great. Okay. So where would this.... You said you had an acreage with chickens on it. That would have been down....
CK: Oh, no, no, no, down, down where the Shaws live. Right, right across from where we used to live, from where I was born.
MC: Okay, so when you lived on the water.
CK: On the water.
MC: That's when you had the chickens.
CK: That's right. They had a few chickens there too, mixed with ours. But the chickens had eggs and so we never got hungry. We used to grow some vegetables there too.
MC: Right. We've better move this way because I think what we're going to, we're going to..... That's a different property over there.
CK: Right, right.
MC: But we're going to start picking up the sounds of all the trucks and things.
MC: I wanted to ask you about delivering the newspaper.
CK: Oh yeah.
MC: Down here. What newspaper was that?
CK: That was the, the New Canadian. That was when I ... After I was [from Steveston] where I was. I wasn't living here at that time, of course.
MC: Okay, so how old would you have been then?
CK: I would have been possibly 12, 13 years old, 14, 15.
MC: And how big, or like how long would it take you to do your paper route?
CK: I used to help another family. They used to have the Continental Times, which is called Tairiku. So I used to help them deliver it, two at the same time.
MC: It was called Continental Times?
CK: Continental Times, Tairiku Nippon. Tairiku is Continental.
YK: Spell it out.
MC: Okay, how would I spell that?
CK: Tairiku, T-A-I.
CK: R-I. Tairiku, R-i-K-U.
MC: Oh isn't that great. So that would have been a Japanese Newspaper?
CK: That's right. And of course the New Canadian, that was a newer paper but that was more of a (Labour Union oriented paper), we used to call it the Communist paper.
MC: And was that written in Japanese too?
CK: Oh yes.
MC: Do you, can you read Japanese now?
CK: Well, Yone, my wife Yone can read a lot better than I can.
MC: Can you? Okay.
CK: When I went to school, that was Japanese Language School after english school. In fact I was telling Yone we just went by the public schools and there are two buildings there. One small building and one big building and the big one was built by donation from the Japanese community here. Every family that wanted to send their children there, they had to pay $50.00 to build that school. $50.00 to build that school, I should say. So the Japanese built that school, the bigger one so that we could use it after school, one hour for Japanese language.
MC: So they taught you the skills of reading Japanese? And oh, isn't that great. Did any caucasian, white kids go?
MC: No, just all for Japanese. What a shame it would have been great for them to learn.
CK: Well, in those days, you know, they didn't even want us to learn Japanese.
MC: Oh, I see. So it wasn't something....
CK: It was altogether different. In fact before then, it was the Japanese Fishermen's Association that had, the Benevolent Society that used to run the school. They didn't get any help from the government at all.
MC: None at all, no.
CK: No. But it was around 1930 when this happened, Depression. They built this great big public school. So up 'til grade 6 it was all Japanese children in the new school. And all the caucasian and Chinese children were in the old school. Then from 7 to 8 they were mixed.
MC: Mixed together. Okay.
CK: In the new school.
MC: Okay, in the new school. This one, this old building here, that's a boatworks.
CK: Yes, it looks like it was a boatworks.
MC: When you look in there can you see anything? Can you remember anything happening here? I bet you were just running up and down the boardwalk and running around.
CK: Well, if it was Sunbeam, that was built way back in 19... 72 was 1935 or 6. So certainly I was about 16 so I could remember.
MC: Okay, and you think there's a possibility it was built in here?
CK: It could have been, if it was Murakami. If it was by Murakami Boathouse. But I didn't think it was on this side. I thought it was further, further down that way.
MC: Well, you have given me the name of the Murakami son.
CK: Oh no, that's a different Murakami but they were related.
MC: Okay, so he would probably remember?
CK: He would probably remember. Oh, he would remember, he would remember everything.
MC: Okay. The name you've given me now, what is he? A nephew or just.....
CK: I don't know how they're related. But they come from same part of Japan.
CK: Okay. Now they've gone back to Japan, the boatbuilder. But Kiyoshi, Kiyoshi would probably, he can tell you all kinds of stories.
MC: Oh good.
CK: Kiyoshi Murakami.
CK: That's corner of Railway and Moncton.
MC: We'll do that then, I'll get in touch. See there's remnants of a boardwalk here too.
CK: Yes, right, right.
MC: So we feel this boardwalk probably went down beside the house here and there's doors and there's a door at the back.
CK: Probably there would be more houses behind there too.
MC: Yeah, yeah, that's what we've heard that. One time it was quite marshy in here and used to flood over and then they filled it in eventually.
CK: Yes, I remember going to my, to my little chicken house there and we had sidewalk and we had so much water, there was a flood and I was walking on there and I fell over into it. I almost drowned. I didn't know how to swim.
MC: Oh no. Do you know how to swim now?
MC: No, oh dear, oh dear. When you fell in did you, had you already collected the eggs or were you on your way?
CK: No, no, no I was going there and it was slippery I guess, I just slipped right there.
MC: So your mom must have gotten used to seeing you soaken wet there.
CK: Oh, all the time.
MC: She'd probably think it was great if you came home dry.
CK: That's for sure.
MC: Okay. Have you seen inside this boatworks here?
CK: Yes, they're building a skiff.
MC: They young fellows here are building a new boat. See those buildings here do you remember them at all?
CK: These here? No. These were back, this boathouse too was back there, right?
MC: Well, this actually was a Kishi Boatworks.
MC: This was Kishi, yeah. And the Kishis lived behind in that grove, where the trees are.
CK: That was after the war wasn't it?
MC: No, before.
CK: Before the war?
MC: Before the war 'cause Jim said, Jim Kishi remembers having his home in behind there.
CK: Okay. This was Kishi, Kishi boatworks. Okay, I thought it was further down.
MC: Well, there were two, there were two Kishi Boatworks. I think this was Jim's uncle's one here but his dad worked in it.
CK: Oh yes.
MC: But there was another boatworks.
MC: Okay, this is the resident dog. Have you been inside to see?
MC: I'll just. If I turn..., I can't leave that on.
Tape turned off
MC: So you remember those old skiffs in your boathouse then?
CK: Oh yes.
MC: And did your dad use it for fishing?
CK: Oh yes.
CK: Motorized, yes definitely.
MC: Well, now would the boat that he had, the skiff he had, would it have been a double ender or was it flat on one end?
CK: I can't remember.
MC: 'Cause there's a different design.
CK: Different designs yes. My brother would know. My older brother would know.
MC: Would he?
Tape turned off.
MC: What I wanted to ask you, was your home... Like how big was it? The one that was on the pilings out in the water.
CK: Oh well, we had a great big kitchen to the, to the east. And we had living room and then the bedroom on the main floor and then the second floor we had one, two, two or three big bedrooms.
YK: You have pictures of your house Coby, don't you?
CK: Not the old one.
YK: Oh, the old one.
CK: The old one. And then behind, behind where we lived we had the storage space where we keep the, store the nets and things. And then on the other side we had a boathouse, where you can repair boats and the slip. Then on the other side we had the storage too where the boats, skiff, used to be in.
MC: That probably went down with the house, right?
CK: Oh, it went down. The whole thing went down yes. Well, I think we used to work till about 1934 or so because I can remember coming up here in 4 or 5. Because we used to tie our boat there and we store our net in the house. But then one big storm, I think, it went down. So.....
MC: Did you have gardens, like for vegetables and things?
CK: Oh we had. Well, we had a garden where the chicken house was.
MC: Where the chicken house was.
CK: We had a garden there.
MC: Who would have tended the garden?
CK: Well, my mother, my mother would probably, my mother and father both.
MC: Okay. Did you raid things out of there too?
CK: Oh well, I guess we used to, I guess. Whatever chicken and eggs we had left over, after our consumption of course, the neighbours used to come and buy.
CK: So we moved, actually we moved away from this house in 19.. I think or so, 1928, to our new home in, on Moncton Street.
MC: On Moncton.
CK: Across from the park there, Steveston Community Centre. Our house number was 110 Moncton Street. I think, right across Steveston Community Centre is 4111, 41-11 so they must have added the four (in front of no. 111)
CK: So ours must have been right across the street, 110 Moncton.
MC: Did you have a telephone when you were there?
MC: Do you remember... Some of the phone numbers were really different. Do you remember what yours was?
CK: 1-2-1, I think it was 1-2-1, I think it was. Steveston 1-2-1. And it would ring dingding and ding and it would be ours. We had party lines in those days.
MC: And you're not supposed to listen in on the other.
CK: No, no, that's right.
MC: Big temptation though.
CK: Big temptation. Yes that's right.
MC: So when you went to school did you pack a lunch to go?
CK: Yes, we used to pack lunch to go to school.
MC: So what... I don't know about Japanese cuisine or anything, what kind of things would you eat at home?
CK: Well, we'd have hot rice, and we'd fry fish, then we'd boil a vegetable, like spinach. That type of thing.
MC: What kind of things would you take?
CK: ...and lettuce and .....
MC: What about lunchtime?
CK: Lunchtime of course we'd pack in a little container. Some rice, some pickles, Japanese pickles like daikon. Then we'd have some kind of meat onto the side. So....
MC: And did you eat that with...
CK: Oh, definitely yes. Of course my, our first language was Japanese.
CK: Because our parents didn't even speak english.
MC: Did they ever speak english?
CK: They didn't have to.
MC: They didn't. Well, that would explain it right?
CK: Especially when we all spoke Japanese.
MC: Yeah, right. Okay. And you went to school then right from grade 1 to 12 right in Richmond. Did you?
CK: Yes, that's right.
MC: That's great. That's great.
End of Interview