Tuesday, March 25, 2014


My informant was in his early teens when the Japanese invaded Guam in December of 1941.  He prefers to remain anonymous.

When the people had to vacate Hagåtña when war began, his family headed north to Yigo where the family had farm land.

I asked him about his Japanese school teacher in Yigo.

"Marino.  Si Kanabichi na'ån-ña." 
("He was a sailor.  Kanabichi was his name.")

"Kao maolek pat båba kostumbre-ña?"  I asked.
("Were his ways good or bad?")


"Ti ha patmåda hamyo, pat ti ha anña' hamyo?"
("He didn't slap you, or beat you up?")

"Åhe', Påle'.  Tåya' bidan-måme lokkue' ni para in merese man ma anña'!"
("No, Father.  We didn't do anything either to deserve to be beaten up!")

Then he grinned a little, looked at me and said,

"Påle', ti todo Chapanis man båba."
("Father, not every Japanese was bad.")

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