Tag Archives: Tokyo

Gladys – July 28, 1970

Post card transcription:


Dad is attending a Rotary meeting here in the hotel & I am writing a few cards. This is a rest day. We start toward Nagasaki tomorrow, with several steps on the way. Plan one day at Expo but not more than one. We left the Purdue crowd at the airport and we are travelling alone. We had a most interesting weekend in Tokyo. Saw a Kabuki performance and went to a Japanese restaurant with a Japanese family we know. It was quite an evening. I even ate raw fish and liked it. The secret is the sauce one dips it in. Attended a Japanese church service with a Japanese girl we know. The minister preached his sermon from Job 21. wish I could have had a translation. We did follow the scripture reading in English bible.

Love, Mother

©2017 copyright owned and transcribed by Deborah Sweeney
Post originally found: https://genealogylady.net/2017/09/21/gladys-july-28-1970/


1964-01-25-gry-envelope1964-01-25-gry-p-1Letter transcription:

Sat. Jan. 25, 1963 [sic 1964]

Dear David,

We took a trip – left here Thurs. afternoon and went by express train to Nikko. Spent the night at a Resort Hotel, then Friday took a tour of the area. We visited a Shinto Shrine and had to take our shoes of to enter a certain part of shine. Our guide had some sox to put on. I thought my feet would freeze because we were up in the mountains and it was cold. After our tour was over and we returned to hotel to wait to get train back to Tokyo I found a nice warm radiator and toasted my feet and legs and by the time we were on the train I felt thawed. The train was nice and warm so did some more toasting – there was a radiator under each seat. The trains here are very punctual and if they are supposed to start at 5 o’clock – they do that. We came back to Okura Hotel and after a little relaxation in our room went to the Emerald Room and had dinner – we are eating in the various restaurants here in the hotel and hadn’t visited Emerald Room yet. There was an orchestra – something none of the other restaurants here in the hotel have. We sat by window and could look out on swimming pool area and Japanese Garden. Very picturesque. We are going shopping this morning to buy me some pearls and a few other things. This p.m. we are taking a tour of city. Tomorrow a.m. we will fly to Kyoto. We will spend a week there, then fly to Hong Kong. When we get that far I will try to make contact with Bonnie’s parents. We talked to Chief Officers of U.S.I.S. here in Tokyo. He assured us it is safe to go into Cambodia – in fact, he said, your friends will love you if you take a lot of pictures. He said we should plan to stay longer than one day. I think I mentioned the American Embassy is just around a curve from this hotel. I hope you are not feeling too disappointed about not being accepted at Yale. You know there is still Northwestern. I think you would find, if you could investigate all Theological schools, one just as good for you as Yale. Also remember what I wrote before, it evidently wasn’t God’s will that you go there this year. Let us know what you are doing – if you have made application to Drew or some other. Where is Drew? When I looked out this morning I saw a fine snow. We are seeing a lot of interesting things here but it isn’t warm enough for my taste. I will be glad to get into a warmer climate. I hope it will be a little warmer in Kyoto. We have received several letters since we have been here. We left several mailing itineraries around Kentland, so people know where to send mail. I have just washed my hair and am under dryer while I write this. Our guide told us yesterday that this is a very unreligious nation. Many people are both Shinto & Buddah flowers. Many places have shrines to both side by side. We explained (or tried) the differences between our religion & Catholic. She seemed surprised when I told here we didn’t use sign of cross (that is cross ourselves) or confession. We saw a Catholic church yesterday. At the resort where we ate lunch I saw a contribution box with a Catholic name – I think it was St. Anthony’s church. Dad has been carrying the yen and I didn’t have anything to put in the box. I doubt that I would have made a contribution. Our church has a great challenge in this country. There is only about a 3 or 5% following here, that is Christian and Methodist isn’t the only denomination. Of course we have a challenge all over the world. I think my hair is dry and Dad is getting ready to go to breakfast, so I will have to finish this so I can go with him.

Love Mother

Tell Bonnie this is for her also.

Some of the surviving photographs from Nikko, Japan:

©2016 copyright owned and transcribed by Deborah Sweeney
Post originally found: https://genealogylady.net/2016/12/02/nikko/

American Embassy and UNICEF

1964-01-23-gyr-envelopeLetter transcription:

1964-01-23-gry-p-1Thurs. Jan. 23, 1964

Dear David,

This is a free morning and we are packed ready to leave at 12:20 from hotel to get train to Nikko. We will have a sight-seeing trip tomorrow morning and return here to Okura Hotel tomorrow evening. We will travel by train to and from Nikko.

Yesterday a.m. we took a tour around city and the traffic here is the wildest. We stopped at the American Embassy, which is just around a curve from this hotel. I wanted to make some inquiries about UNICEF. We met the Chief Information Officer for USIS and he told us the taxi drivers are called by the same name we gave to the Japanese pilots during the war – which means suicide. We haven’t seen any accidents, but our guide told us yesterday there are a number of accidents every day and I think she said 2 people are killed and many more injured every day. The British system of driving is used and it is hard to get used to the driver being on the right side of car or bus. Our tour included the Tokyo TV tower and it is supposed to be the tallest structure of its kind in the world. We went up to observation tower, but there was so much smog we couldn’t see very far. Our tour also included a tea ceremony. To conclude ceremonial drinking tea for tea bowl one to be polite must make a sucking sound to get all the foam from bottom of bowl. There was a beautiful garden where we saw tea ceremony so took some pictures. We are having film developed as we travel. So far we have some very good pictures – taken in Hawaii. We stopped at silk gallery and one woman in group bought 2 kimonos but I thought prices a little high. I want to get some things made in H.K. so have to hold the spending down or pay duty. We rode around (one side) Royal Palace moat. That is as close as you can get – just look at the place from street – no visitors allowed. The King and Queen of Belgium are here and guide told us the extra police we saw all along the way were for security measures. Any policeman with yellow band on arm can speak English.

In the afternoon we went to a Dept. store and saw a lot of interesting things Japanese but also saw Hoover sweepers and other items from U.S. One thing that intrigues me is the way they dwarf plants. We took a picture in Dept. store of a counter full of plants. We saw Flowing Quince in bloom – You remember those enormous bushes you used to growl about just south of our terrace – they were Flowering Quince – but large. These little things we saw in bloom were the same thing only on a very small scale.

1964-01-23-gry-p-2Tuesday night we went

[page 2] Kabuki Theatre. John had said to see it. It is the old traditional play. All the actors are men – but some dressed like women. I wished we could have understood what they were saying. For some reason we didn’t get a program. We met a man from U.S. who was on plane across the isle from us. He is either Japanese or Chinese and is staying in this hotel. He lives in U.S. but is traveling here on business. We have talked to him several times. We have seen a few people who are not Japanese but when we were in store yesterday we, as far as I could see, were the only non-residents present. We leave here Sun. a.m. for Kyoto.

Love Mother

©2016 copyright owned and transcribed by Deborah Sweeney
Post originally found: https://genealogylady.net/2016/12/01/american-embassy-and-unicef/

Okura Hotel

1964-01-21-gyr-envelopeLetter transcription:

1964-01-21-gry-p-1Jan. 21 – 1964

Dear David – Your cable was waiting for us when we arrived at Okura Hotel in Tokyo. I hope you aren’t too disappointed. The only reason I would be is because you would be, but there are so many good theological schools I wouldn’t lose any sleep over it. You can never tell what opportunity may be awaiting you elsewhere, and since they said no it must be the Lord’s will that you go elsewhere. Don’t forget that factor in your plans.

We left Honolulu at 5:30 p.m. Sunday and as soon as we were airborne told Tokyo time which was a little past 12:30. When we crossed the International Date Line we lost a day in the time it takes a jet to cross the line. We must have had strong head winds because it was 10 p.m. when we arrived in Tokyo. We had to go thru customs and then what we thought a wild ride to Hotel. It is the British system here and traffic is terrible. I kept thinking we couldn’t get thru without accident but we did. We got to bed at midnight which we figured would have been about 5 a.m. if we were back in Honolulu, so we had a long day. I was awake early this a.m. but have just been writing in bed. Dad is stirring around so I think we will go for breakfast

1964-01-21-gry-p-2[page 2] soon and get some $1’s changed to yen. I gathered those yen & sen John brought home last summer and we had something to use for a tip when we came in last night.

We are to see travel agent at 10 a.m. so I think I am going to have to get up soon. Today is a free day so I think I will buy pearls. Tomorrow we take a 3 hour tour of city and the next day go to Nikko by express train. We have a nice room looking out over city. Let us know how you come out on application to Drew. Remember there are other schools, even Northwestern.

Love Mother

[Editor’s note: The Okura Hotel is where James Bond stays when he goes to Tokyo.]

©2016 copyright owned and transcribed by Deborah Sweeney
Post originally found: https://genealogylady.net/2016/11/30/okura-hotel/

Heading to Tokyo

Letter transcription:

1964-01-19-gry-p-1Dear David –

Sun. the 19th. We have just checked out at Reef Hotel and have to wait a little while for transportation to airport. Our plane leaves at 5:20 – We have to be there for customs inspection by 4:30 – the Gray line will come for us at 4:00. We had to check out at 2:00 or pay for half a day (to stay in room another 2 hrs.) so decided to wait in lobby. It is so pleasant here I don’t mind at all, and will get some letters written besides.

We went out to Dick Ward’s again yesterday afternoon – or I should say he came here and picked us up in his car. We took a short tour of Bishop Museum, then went to their home for dinner. They like to play bridge, so after the children were in bed we had a bridge session. They are so far away from any relatives they seemed to enjoy our visit, last Sunday & yesterday.

We had three letters when we returned from outer island tour yesterday – yours, one from Art & one from Janssens. All told the same story – that there had been a blizzard and 1500 people stranded in Kentland. Art sent us a picture he had taken of the snow piled up at 3rd & Graham. It is hard to believe there could be that kind of weather anywhere, sitting here enjoying the sunshine and balmy breezes.

We enjoyed our tour of outer islands very much. It is hard to believe there were so many people taking vacations, but we met quite a few.

We attended First Methodist Church this morning. There are two services and we attended the 11:00 a.m. We were trying to get all of our packing done so didn’t get to earliest service. We sent a package home and when to get to Indonesia I think we will give some of Dad’s pants to John. Dad doesn’t like the tight look – so we will have some made to suit his tastes in H.K. [Hong Kong].

We will arrive in Tokyo – according to plane ticket at 9:30 tonight – after losing a few hours and one day – we will leave here Sun. & arrive there Monday although it is just a 7 hour flight.

Love Mother

We have two days in Tokyo before to go on an out of town tour.

©2016 copyright owned and transcribed by Deborah Sweeney
Post originally found: https://genealogylady.net/2016/11/29/heading-to-tokyo/