Early Summer (1951) Script

Shochiku Films

Early Summer Participant in the 1951 Arts Festival Written by Kogo Noda & Yasujiro Ozu Produced by Takeshi Yamamoto Cinematography by Yuharu Atsuta Art Direction by Tatsuo Hamada


Cast:

Setsuko Hara as Noriko Mamiya Chishu Ryu as Koichi Mamiya Chikage Awashima as Aya Tamura Kuniko Miyake as Fumiko Mamiya, Ichiro Sugai as Shukichi Mamiya Chieko Higashiyama as Shige Mamiya, Haruko Sugimura as Tami Yabe Hiroshi Nihonyanagi as Kenkichi Yabe

Shuji Sano as Sotaro Satake

Directed by Yasujiro Ozu


Breakfast, Grandpa Morning Come on I'll be right there

I told him Take this with you

Some pickles Thanks

Where's Isamu?

Isamu!

Looks delicious Isamu!

Isamu!

Have you washed your face? Yes No, you haven't. Your face is still dirty

Hurry up, Isamu


Done already? I washed my face!

If you don't believe me, check the wet towel All right You sure?

Here Thank you

We've started Will you post this for me?

Chew your food well

You're off early I've got a very sick patient

I'll bring uncle back with me I appreciate it

See you later Bye Bye!

Hurry, Brother! You only have seven minutes Are you coming? Where will we meet?

Noriko and I have decided on a place

See you later

Thanks for breakfast!

Hurry up, Isamu

What kind of food does uncle like?

You don't have to cook anything special, but he likes beans Me, too! Just be quiet and eat You're slow, Isamu Thanks for breakfast


I'll be off Have a good day See you at 5:30 All right. See you later

You'll be late for school Don't forget father's post Thanks. Bye for now See you later What are you doing?

Bye! Have a good day You've got everything? Yes!

Bye!


Morning Morning. Where's your brother?

He caught the earlier train I see

So there's a very sick patient? Yes, I was there till 11:00 last night I'm enjoying Les Thibault Where are you up to?

Halfway through the fourth volume I see


Now your toes are all neat and clean Here's a treat for you

Here. You love your grandpa?

Very much?

Very much Really? Here I love you Here I love you That's enough

I hate you Hey!

I hate you very much! Stop it!


An order's come in for our new product

What about Asahi Processing? That's still pending

Know a good cafe?

Well, I'd recommend the Luna in West Ginza It's a tiny place, though Luna?

Did you give that stuff to the director?

Yes, why?

That's fine

Yes?

Hello Ah, here comes the debt collector Hello Hello

Are you busy? Very busy It must mean the business is going well Thank you What happened the other night?

It was very entertaining. Mr Yada started singing again

What a shame It made mother's heart act up again Don't worry, the old bag's not about to die yet

Did you hear? Chako's getting married I didn't know. To whom?

Mr Tsumura. Don't you know him? Mr Tsumura?

He played basketball for Waseda University I don't know him. Is it a love match?

She's had a crush on him forever You're a sad sight, like two jealous old maids!

Here, I hope it doesn't bounce Thank you You're welcome I'm going out Where to?

Mr Robert's hotel. If he calls, I'll be there at 2:00 Could you give me a lift?

It's out of your way I'll continue home from there

Will you come by later? I can't today All right. Bye Bye


SHIKIKAWA'S

Sorry to keep you waiting. Thank you

What's this?

Some sort of seafood Squills Some more? I've had enough You certainly can drink, can't you? It tastes good Won't you have a bit more? Maybe just a drop I'm not wasting it. You don't need to drink just to keep up What's funny? That's so typical of him He's always like that Like what?

You have a habit of offering something and then taking it back She said she'd had enough You have no sense of etiquette What do you mean?

Is the tempura good, sis? Really good You're always bringing up etiquette at every turn...

...expecting men to be kind to women by law or something But you're mistaken Men and women should have respect for each other That's what etiquette really means So you do know. That's good I didn't think he did Idiot!

Noriko, do you want some rice? Yes, please

It's been deplorable since the war Women have become so forward, taking advantage of etiquette That's not true. We've just taken our natural place Men have been too forward till now Hear, hear!

That's why you can't get married It's not "can't", it's "won't"! I could any time, if I wanted to Lies!

Just don't marry a doctor Never!

What? You two are impossible

We should hurry if you still want to go to Ginza Really?

He's coming on the 9:45 train. We have plenty of time

When was the last time uncle visited?

A year after the war ended. The station was so crowded That's right. I was still wearing those wartime trousers He's kept in good health through it all

This rice tastes good


I remember that scroll from the house in Yamato

What happened to the other one that was shaped like a fan?

The one shaped like a fan... Oh, I sold it Really?

This one's really nice Prices have gone up, times are hard

You're working on Sunday?

Yes. Shall I bring back some treats for uncle?

But he can't chew anything hard All right, then I'll be going See you later

Bye!

Noriko, take this up to uncle Is that all, sis?

Here's some tea for you, Uncle

How old are you now, Noriko?

Twenty-eight

She's 28 now Is that right?

About time to get married

Some women don't want to get married You're not one of them, are you?

Here's my share, 570 yen I have change Don't bother No, I insist. I've got some Here Thanks We could've cooked that same meal for a third of the price Not nearly as delicious, though But the whole family could’ve eaten I almost forgot. How much was the coffee in Ginza?

That's my treat No, how much? It was my treat Are you sure? Thank you

Auntie What?

What is it?

What? Is Uncle deaf?

Not at all But he can't hear me Yes, he can


Idiot

Speak louder!


Aren't you tired, Uncle? Maybe...

How old are you now?

Twenty-eight Well, it's about time you got married, isn't it?

Do you know any good men in Yamato?

Someone rich...

...who can make me happy and give me a very easy life?

What a lovely day!

Good afternoon Afternoon Taking a walk with grandma, Mitsuko? Where are you off to?

The weather's too nice to stay in Is your father home? No, he's with your brother At the conference?

I hope he's a help and not a hindrance to your brother Quite the opposite, I'm sure Your dress is so pretty I hear you have a guest He's here with me Is that so?

Isamu, give uncle some sweets

Here

Eh? He eats the paper too


He must be enjoying this I hope he can hear the show We got him a seat right near the front

Takako's taking a long time in her bath Why did she leave home? Well...

When I got home from downtown, she was here crying Then she asked me to let her stay the night She had a fight with her husband But they're such a happy couple Maybe too happy

Ah, Noriko's here Thanks for the bath When did you get here? Not long ago Why are you staring at me?

You were too happy What?

In your marriage Not at all What were you fighting about? Nothing at all It wasn't "nothing at all"! What happened?

You know our dog? What dog?

My pet dog Chibi It chewed his pipe He left it lying around, so of course the dog chewed it It's a nice pipe from London or somewhere He blamed me, so I served him carrots every day out of spite The dog hates carrots? Not the dog, my husband!

A horse would have loved them Idiot!

Anyhow, he blew his top this morning Over something so trivial? It was really upsetting You just have to be patient with him You're a married woman So what?

You have to put up with it. Doesn't she?

It's only natural, isn't it?

All husbands are selfish like that That's why we won't get married That's right, isn't it?

What? You know nothing about married life Married life? Only married people understand Once you're hitched, it's too late to understand I'm going home Yes, you should It's for the best He'll still be eating carrots Then I'm staying Not going home? No Then spend the night here No So you'll go? No Make up your mind!

Takako, your husband's on the phone Oh, really? Thank you

Aya, shall I bring it up? What?

You know. Should I ask Noriko about it?

About what? This Your heart?

She wants your brother to examine her Do you think he'd see her? You?

Yes. I feel sick whenever I drink a few tiny cups of sake Then stop drinking! In my business I have to drink My heart starts racing Someone recommended moxa treatment...

...so I went to this place in Yokohama I've heard this already I'm talking to Noriko not you I'll explain it to Noriko later. Right? Of course I hope you will. Thank you Oh, by the way, your boss is upstairs Alone? He just got here I should go and say hello What?

I still have time

Are you staying, Noriko? Are you going home?

Yes, I'm going. Thanks for everything Why? Sit down and relax I can't. He's waiting for me in Ginza Who? Mr Carrot?

Yes. Sorry Go on, then

You're going to Chako's wedding, aren't you?

No, I'm not going

Excuse me Oh, you're here? Come and sit down

Hill Enterprises called after you left And? I did as you said Thank you

Have a drink

Thank you

Oh, I'm glad you came. I wanted to talk to you Are you...? Yes?

Why don't you get married?

It's about time I have a good prospect A man from my old university, a little older than me He lived in Calcutta for a long time His name's Manabe. A good man He's never been married. I'm not sure if he's still a virgin I have some photos of him

They're not that clear. This is him

Have a look This one, too

He's a better golfer than me, and better looking

Sorry but... What?

I have to go and meet someone Are you trying to escape? No, but my parents are at Kabuki Really? Then take my car If you don't mind, it's to Shinbashi Fine Thank you

Take these with you Ask your folks their opinion Come on, take them All right, thank you


Sorry to keep you waiting Thanks

Aren't you sleepy, Uncle?

Brother, you must be tired No Why don't you go to bed? You have an early train tomorrow I really enjoyed the play today The young actors were so good Really admirable Really? I'll have to see it I'm glad you liked it

I'm off to bed All right Come and see me in Yamato I will, after Noriko's been sorted out You must come. Shige, as well Yamato is the best place to live Leave this house to the youngsters!

I agree. Koichi's independent now I'd love to visit you

Right, I'm going to bed

'Night all Goodnight Goodnight


Mr Satake was talking to me about marriage Uncle was talking about the same thing, too Really? I'm suddenly very popular!

So what did your boss say? I didn't have time to listen May I take this hot water? Of course


A visitor for Dr Mamiya Who is it?

It's a Mrs Tamura from Tsukiji All right, I'll see her Any test results yet? Not yet That's odd

How do you do? I'm Dr Mamiya Pleased to meet you. I'm Aya's mother Have a seat Thank you

Your sister Noriko is such a good friend to my daughter So, I hear you're concerned about your heart I wanted to ask you to examine me, Doctor If I can be of any help I'm sure you can, but I'm sorry to bother you when you're so busy Not at all Thank you By the way, congratulations about Noriko Aya and I are very happy for her What do you mean? Mr Satake found a man for her Is that right?

He seems like a fine man He's the young director of a company with a very good reputation And he's very smart I see He's from a very old family from Zentsuji in Shikoku They keep up their manor in the best traditional style I see...

Well, shall we begin? Yes This way Thank you for making time for me


I'm home

Welcome home. You're early today

Is Noriko home yet? No

She's at her friend's wedding Which one?

Chako. You don't know her The bath's ready Good Your father's taking his now That woman from Tsukiji came in today Oh, Aya's mother?

She's really something

Does she have a bad heart?

It's her nose, not her heart

How's the bath, Father?

Very nice. Just right Good

Mr Satake's friend sounds like a good match for Noriko You know about that?

That woman from Tsukiji told me She said he's a company director Really?

He looks like a good man You've seen him? I saw his photograph Noriko's got a picture of him? Yes Isamu, go to your room

What's he like? It was a golfing picture, not very clear Go to your room!

Sounds good I think so, too Shall I ask around about him?

Yes. I have the feeling that he could be a good match Go away, Isamu!

He sounds promising I agree

...six, seven, eight, nine, ninety One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, one hundred!

That was 200

20 yen!

For that, I should get more Isamu, give grandma a little extra massage Is Isamu going to massage me now?

Thank you With this 20 yen, I'll have saved 300 yen, Grandma Very good. But what are you saving for?

A model train track But you already have some I need more to make a really long track. Right, Isamu?

I see

The bath was good. Just right

Father...

Noriko has received a proposal Really?

It seems very promising That's good to hear It's about time she got married She's 28 already That's right. I hope it's a good match I think so. I'll ask around about him Yes, do that. And right away


It's not fair to say that You don't think so?

Any bride would be like that But I've never seen her like that Yes, putting on airs, looking all prim

Where was your honeymoon? Chuzenji We went to Atami It started raining that very day. We couldn't go out for three days It rained solidly every day. We didn't know what to do with ourselves Mari, why are you telling us this?

Just a documentary report We asked a hotel employee for a top A top? Yes, you know?

A spinning top painted with flags We passed the time playing with it Oh, really?

My husband's very good at it... Really? Oh, really?

You shouldn’t flaunt it in front of the single girls How silly! We don't play with spinning tops, do we?

We're not children, are we?

Single girls just don't understand, do they?

No, they don't You have to feel sorry for them Takako! How can you say that?

What is it? She has no right Right, I'm leaving

Single people don't know what real happiness is They have no right to talk Look who's talking, Mrs Carrot!

Single people have no say!

You always go on about happiness, but it's just anticipation Like before you go to the races, planning which horse to bet on Then dreaming about how you’ll spend your winnings You're wrong. You don't know You don't know You too? Don't back down!

I'm leaving, too Leave, you dreamers!

Shall we go to Kamakura, to Noriko's?

Please do. It's a beautiful season How about Sunday after next?

Sounds good. How about you, Aya?

I can go anytime, because I'm not married. Right?

She's at it again!


I'm home!

Noriko?

Shall I lock the door? Yes

Finally home! Welcome How was Chako? She looked so lovely The reception was magnificent

Was she in Western dress? No, a kimono Would you like to try a bit?

What is it?

Shortcake! It looks delicious I went to the Ginza with some friends

They're coming to Kamakura next Sunday Really? I'll cook something special Please have some

You don't want any? I've had enough Thank you

My friends are funny. We always split into two groups...

...the married and the single Aya got all worked up again How come?

Because the married ones look down on us for being single Why not get married, then?

You're on their side? Of course Oh, dear!

I'll think about it, then You should. How about the man Mr Satake suggested?

He sounds nice Mr Satake speaks very highly of him

Oh! You scared me!

Were you awake all this time?

She doesn't seem against the idea I know. I think it's a possibility She may accept. Try and ask her

This cake tastes really good Is it?

I'll buy more next time Please do

Noriko can be stubborn so be tactful I know. Leave it to me Tell her that her father approves, but don't press her too much Don't worry Do your best, all right?


Hello?

Hello? Who is it?

Hello. Long time no see Ah, Aunt Tami. Come in Very well. Thank you

Sorry I haven't seen you for such a long time Where's Koichi's wife?

She went shopping. Please make your self comfortable Here's something for you from my hometown I hope you like it. It arrived this morning You're always very kind Oh, it's nothing We had a strange visitor this morning Oh? Who was it?

I'd never seen him before A man with parted hair, glasses and a black bag At first, I thought he was from the tax office But I was wrong Who was he?

He was from one of those reference agencies He asked me questions about Noriko Did he really?

Then I realised that it must be about her marriage They're doing a background check I asked him who was interested Did you?

He just scratched his head and tried to laugh it off I got so annoyed, I told him he'd never find a better girl I gave him what for!

Oh, my!

Turns out, that horrible little man knew quite a lot He even knew that both our sons were classmates...

Oh, hello Welcome Thank you for being so kind to Kenkichi And how are you?

I'm fine, thank you

Your son has become a fine doctor Thank you, but all he does since his wife died is read books It's been two years, hasn't it? Yes. How time flies

What about your son Shoji? He won't be coming back Some people have returned recently from the south I've given up hope There you go

My wife still thinks he's alive somewhere I know how it is. You can't help it Every day, she listens to the Missing Persons Hour on the radio

It's funny how our memories work I forget about recent things...

...yet I remember everything about Shoji so vividly

He won't be coming home

PHYSICIAN

You were stationed in Zentsuji, right?

That's right Ever hear of a man called Manabe?

No. Who is he?

Never mind

Sakaguchi was at Zentsuji Was he really?

He might know him. He knows a lot of people

That's a stalemate position Was this here? No, it was there

There are so many kids around here now It's extra noisy on Sundays My house is filled with them today I can't stay in that position Watch your legs! Careful!

There it goes!

More speed Here it comes!

Coming! Almost!

Is this ready? Yes, take it in

What a crowd!

Lunch, everyone Sandwiches for lunch!

Sandwiches! Let's eat on the terrace Don't step on the tracks!

Here, take this

Buy me some more track, Mum You have enough It belongs to my friends. I only have eight pieces Buy me some more Why not use your pocket money?

It's not enough. I want to make it longer. Right, Isamu?

Buy me more, Mum I'll ask Father Ask him, then Tell him it's 32mm-gauge. Don't forget!

You're so crafty Shut up!

Will you buy me some? No way

Hello?

Welcome Hello Mari called to say she can't come Really?

Has Takako come yet? No Oh, what a crowd!

Just look at that!

Just go away!

Hello Welcome. Please come in

How lovely A little something for your mother Thank you very much

The sky's so beautiful here I can't even see the sky where I live!

Where's your father? The museum with my mother What did Mari say?

Her husband's going away on business. She really wanted to come I see...

How inconvenient. If I were her, I'd have come It's not that simple for her She could have come. She has a maid to help her Maybe a wife has other worries We single women wouldn't know Right!

Help yourself

Kamakura is such a nice place

I wish I could live here Noriko, phone call for you!

From Oiso Is it?

Hello? Takako? What is it?

Really?

I see...

Takako just called. She's in Oiso Oiso?

Her father's sick That's not true. He's on a trip, I read it in the newspaper Is that so?

This party was her idea as well

I wonder why she didn't come We've been dumped

Because we're fussy, right?

We were such close friends in school Now we're slowly drifting apart

Can't be helped. That's how it is, it seems I can't bear it

Shall we go to the beach later?

Yes, shall we?

Have something to eat Let's eat

Pass me the juice


This may be the happiest time for our family We'll be sad when Noriko leaves us to get married You're right What do you think of Mr Satake's plan?

I hope it works out. It's time she got married

How time flies Koichi got married, our grandchildren were born...

...and now Noriko's getting married This may be the happiest time of our lives You think so?

But we'll still have happy times We mustn't ask for too much

I've really enjoyed today

Look

Some child somewhere must be crying

Remember how Koichi cried when he lost his balloon?


Hello? Hello. Yes, it is It's from home Oh, thanks

Hello? Fumiko? It's me I have to stay tonight to keep watch on a patient Is Noriko home? I see Her prospects seem very good. Sakaguchi told me I'll tell you when I get home All right. I understand What? Oh, I see Goodnight

Is he staying over? Yes How marvellous. It looks delicious How much was it? 900 yen

900 yen? That? Yes For that? That's so expensive!

Is it their usual price? Yes

I've lost my appetite Come on, pass me the plates I shouldn’t have asked you The plates, the plates!

I feel terrible. I shouldn’t have asked you to buy it

Will you pay for half of it?

Me? Forget it I will, I will! You're serious?

Here It's so expensive, though But this bakery is the best It costs as much as half a pound of wool But it's a rare occasion, I suppose

Good evening! Who is it?

It's Yabe

Welcome Tonight your brother...

He just called, he's staying overnight I see Please come in Thank you

Good evening Here you are Thank you for stopping by Not at all Where are your parents? Gone to bed Please My timing was good. You don't mind me having this?

Please do

Are you celebrating something? Why?

Do you eat cake like this often?

Not that often I wish I could May I? Please

It must've cost a lot It was quite reasonable, right?

It was cheap, so don't worry

It's good Noriko, I believe congratulations are in order Really?

So I've heard Really? How wonderful. What's the occasion?

I'm right, aren't I?

Maybe...

And you too, I hear Me?

Your mother said so That's just an idea in her head I think you should remarry. Shouldn't he?

Yes, it would be good for little Mitsuko, too I heard the lady's really nice Mother's just getting all excited

Are you not going to eat that? If not, I will I certainly am! Are you sure? Too bad

It's so good Hide the cake


What is it?

Evening, Minoru


I'm home Hi, Dad

Great!

Look, Mum! Great!

Welcome home

Isamu, dad bought us some track!

This is great!

Great!

Hands off and wait!

Dad's great! Let's see

What's this?

Bread Shut up!

Idiot!

Where's mother? In the bathroom?

Mother?

My belt...

The proposal for Noriko seems very promising That's very good Sakaguchi says the man is from a very good family in Zentsuji He is the second son Really?

He's in the social register and seems to be a fine businessman I see. How nice. And how old is he?

He was born in the 43rd year of the Meiji Era, so he's...42

42? That's about right Forties, huh? He's that much older than Noriko?

Age doesn't matter!

But that's too old for Noriko That's right So what age is good?

Noriko's not so young herself She can't be too choosy or she'll never get married

As long as he's respectable, we shouldn’t be picky I just feel sorry for her Sorry for her? Why?

What do you mean?

With that kind of attitude, you’ll spoil things for Noriko I wonder... Yes, you will Aren't you asking for too much? You always do this Yes, but... But what?

What does Noriko think?

You said she'd accept Yes, but...

Didn't you tell me that?

You said so But it was you who...

Idiot! Stop twisting things around!

Am I asking for too much?


What's wrong?

He scolded me It's all right

We're all just concerned for Noriko

Don't worry about it


Liar! Liar!

I wanted train track, not that!

Stop that!

This stupid thing!

Stop that!

Why did you do that? You do not kick food around!

Liar!

That's a bad thing to do!

You understand? Let me go!

Isamu, come here!

I'm home!

Where are you going? Have you been scolded?

Where are you going? I don't know

I'm home Did you scold them again?

You're in a bad mood You shouldn’t scold them when you're angry I feel sorry for them Why?

They've grown scared of you Don't lecture me I'm not lecturing you. You're always...

Just mind your own business Very well

I'm home Welcome back He's in a bad mood, isn't he?


Idiot! Idiot!

Isamu! Come on!


Where can they be?

Where, indeed? They'll be getting hungry now Yes, they will be. Poor things

Aren't they back yet?

Not yet. Where could they have got to?

It's getting late

I'll go and have another look

But, Father... No, I'm going

Good evening. Anybody in?

Is that you, Noriko? Yes

Did our boys come here?

No They didn't?

No. What's wrong?

They've been out all day and still aren't back Really? Where can they be?

What's up?

Will you help her find the boys? All right Let's go Thank you Those sandals have got holes in They're fine It's dark out, be careful!

Check the road that goes towards Hase And don't forget to check the train station And the back lanes, too!

Your turn Is it?

Why did you get so angry with them?

Don't be too harsh on them. Children are sensitive

You shouldn’t lose your temper I know I shouldn’t

It's not easy Right, it's not easy

Hello? Yes?

Ah, Mrs Mamiya? How are you?

Yes, he's here For me? Yes, your wife Hello? It's me Really? They're home?

That's good

I see. I'll be home soon

They're home Thank goodness They were starving and just sitting in the train station Poor boys They're such a bother I'll be off Yes, you'd better

They take after me more and more But only my bad side, unfortunately That's just how it goes Don't forget our conversation What?

They want that position at Akita Hospital filled right away

I'll ask him tomorrow See you All right Goodnight Let me know

I'm home

Mitsuko, my good little girl You mustn't go outside

You're early. Are you hungry?

There's fried rice Fine Mother? What?

I have something to tell you What is it?

Come and sit down

What is it?

I'm thinking of going to Akita Akita? On a business trip?

They've asked me to run the internal medicine department at Akita Hospital They asked you? Yes The offer came through Mr Mamiya He told me I'd be called back to Tokyo in a few years What do you think?

I'd like to go. But I can always go on my own You can't do that! Will you come with me then?

How about it? Well...

It's far away Not keen? I'd get a big raise Can't you find a job like that in Tokyo?

No, posts like that are only in the provinces Listen, Mother, it's a great opportunity for me I know that, but...

And I can do my research on local problems there They promised I could return to Tokyo in three or four years

I don't know when I might get another opportunity like this What do you think, Mother?

I'll accept, all right?

You have a bad habit of going quiet when you're angry, Mother


Yes?

Hello Hello. What is it today?

I was just in the neighbourhood Well, have a seat

Where's Noriko? She's out Mr Manabe came by last night Did he say anything?

Not much

What about Noriko? What about her?

Marrying Mr Manabe She hasn't said anything yet I see...

Will you ask her about it? Me?

I don't understand her What do you mean?

Is she interested in men? What do you think?

Sometimes she seems to be, and sometimes she doesn't Has she always been like that? Yes Has she ever been in love? I don't think so But she used to have an album of Katharine Hepburn photos this thick Who's Hepburn?

The American actress A woman?

Yes Is she queer?

No way!

You can never know. She's very strange, in any case Why don't you teach her? About what?

Everything What do you mean, everything?

Don't try to be coy Don't talk to me like that!

That's rude! Sorry

Bring some tea Or some coffee?

Nothing, thank you

Noriko's late She might not be back today. She's seeing her brother That was mean of you. You could’ve told me sooner How about going out for some sushi? All right What is your favourite sushi? Tuna Tuna? How about an open clam? Sure And a rice roll? No way You're a strange one, too


Shoji and I often used to come here when we were students Did you? We always sat at this table Really? That painting was there, too

Time flies, doesn't it?

It does

We quarrelled a lot, but I loved my brother very much

I still have a letter from him It came through the military post. He'd enclosed a wheat stalk

At that time, I was reading Wheat And Soldiers

Could you let me have it? Of course. I'd like you to have it Thank you. Oh, there he is

Been waiting long? Not too long Shall we go? What shall we eat? I'll eat anything It's your farewell dinner, make him treat you Of course. But nothing too expensive Stingy! Expensive dishes aren't always good Shall we go?


Good evening Who is it?

It's me Ah, Noriko?

Welcome. Please come in Thanks

Mitsuko's fast asleep Yes

You're packing?

I'm not making much headway, though

This is a little farewell gift from my family Oh, you shouldn’t have. You're very kind Thank you very much Where's Kenkichi?

Still at his farewell party even though he's off tomorrow When will you join him?

As soon as I finish cleaning this place up It must be hard work

Thanks for all your kindness over the years

Is this your first trip to Akita? Yes The furthest north I've been is Utsunomiya I see You’ll be back in a few years That's what Kenkichi says, too It's true I hope he's right I wanted him to get remarried...

...and then we could live the rest of our lives here

Actually...

I hope you won't be offended, and please don't tell Kenkichi What is it? Well...

I know it's an impossible dream...

...but I just wish Kenkichi had got married to someone like you That's what I thought Really?

I'm sorry. It's just a wish in my heart Please don't be angry with me Do you mean it? What?

Do you really feel that way about me?

Forgive me, I didn't mean to hurt your feelings You wouldn’t mind an old maid like me?

Then I accept Really? Yes You mean it? Yes

Are you sure? You really mean it?

How happy I am! You really mean it?

This is so wonderful Thank you so much!

Thank goodness I mentioned it, or this would never have happened

See? Sometimes it's good that I talk so much Oh, I am so happy!

I feel so relieved

Noriko, let's have some red-bean buns No, thank you. I ought to go now Why?

Please wait a little. Kenkichi will be home soon But it's already so late Very well Can I really believe it? Yes You promise? Are you sure? Yes How happy I am!

Goodbye Goodnight And thank you. Thank you

Welcome back Thanks for last night When's your train tomorrow? It's the 8:45 to Aomori Well, goodnight Goodnight

I'm home

Did you see Noriko?

Did she say anything?

Nothing in particular

Listen, she said she'd join our family She promised she would You see, I told her what's been on my mind It was good that I did. I didn't think she'd accept What's this about? She'll join our family What for? What do you mean, "what for"?

She's agreed to marry you, to become your wife My wife? Yes!

Isn't it wonderful? I'm so happy for you

I'm absolutely overjoyed!

You must be happy too. I'm really glad for you

Then stop crying I can't help it If you’re happy, then show it You are happy, aren't you?

Yes, I'm happy Then don't hold back. Show it!

What an odd boy you are!

Is Noriko back yet?

I heard her come in a few minutes ago

Father What is it?

You too, Mother What?

Please come downstairs

What is it? Please sit down

Well? Noriko wants to marry Yabe Kenkichi?

Yes. She says she promised his mother just now But he's leaving for Akita tomorrow morning That's why I decided This is important. Have you given it careful consideration?

He has a child, too

We've all been concerned about you getting married You must've known that Why didn't you at least talk to father and mother?

Have you thought this through?

You acted rashly I don't know about father and mother, but I don't like this match But I...

When his mother talked to me, I didn't feel a moment's hesitation I suddenly felt that I'd be happy with him That's why I accepted Are you sure you won't be sorry later?

I don't think so Are you positive you won't regret this later?

I'm sure You're sure? Absolutely sure?

I'm sure

Don't you feel chilly, dear?

Shall we go back to bed?

Let's go back to sleep


It was thoughtless of her to decide on her own

She acts like she grew up all by herself


What should we do?

Should we let her?

Why not? It's her own decision Maybe something can still be done What could we do now? She's made up her mind

You know how she is


Yes?

There's a visitor for you in reception All right

Thanks for seeing him off I'm glad that he got a seat He couldn’t have stood all the way to Akita He's lucky What brings you here?

The station was too crowded to talk About what?

I couldn’t possibly ask you with all those people around...

...but I kept thinking about it after we parted What is this about? About last night I still can't believe it. It feels like it was a dream Did your parents approve?

Yes And your brother?

Don't worry Really? They approved?

Wonderful, wonderful But what does Kenkichi think?

Kenkichi?

He's overjoyed. He didn't sleep a wink last night We ate again in the middle of the night Really?

I'll live a nice long life, thanks to you I feel so relieved now Well, I'll be going now. I'm so happy!

This is the way out Oh, is it?

Oh, I'm so happy!


Fumi, can you pull it from that end?

I wonder if she did the right thing, deciding on her own I wonder too She didn't have to marry someone with a child You're right Maybe she doesn't mind...

...but it's a pity there was nothing we could do

I always thought...

...ever since she left school...

...every time I heard people compliment her...

...I wondered what kind of family she'd marry into

You know Mrs Shinoda from Denen-Chofu?

Yes Whenever I visited her beautiful home...

...I dreamed Noriko would be a wife in such a smart house one day I'm sure Now I think Mr Satake's man might've been a better choice I agree I don't understand young people nowadays Are you going out?

To buy some seed for the canaries

I'll see him out

Do you want me to get anything else? No

See you later


So you've already decided?

It was all very sudden. When's your wedding?

We’ll discuss it when he returns from Akita in a few months You've taken a big step I didn't think you were the type who could ever leave Tokyo Why?

I imagined you'd live Western-style, with a flower garden...

...listening to Chopin And in your tiled kitchen, you'd have a refrigerator filled with Coca-Cola I thought you'd be a wife in a house like that And when I'd visit, you'd meet me on a covered porch...

...wearing a white sweater, playing with a Scottish terrier...

...and you'd greet me over a hedge, "Hello, how are you?"

Not at all I couldn’t imagine otherwise Akita is farm country, right?

Will you wear farmer's clothes? Of course

"A wright my luvva?

"Proper nice weather we been havin', eh?"

Can you talk like that?

"Reckon I can a wright. Tis easy"

"Well, I be!

"You come up 'ere from the big city and already talk our dialect

"You don't look local, but you talk local"

"If I's gonna live in Akita when me man an' I tie the knot...

..."then reckon I shud learn the dialect"

You speak it so well!

A girl from Akita went to our school So that's why!

Do you remember...

...before your brother Shoji left for the front...

...we went hiking with him and a friend?

Is he the man?

I don't remember if he was with us Did you like him then?

I had no particular feelings for him When did it start? I don't know. It happened gradually Really? I had no idea Of course not. I never imagined myself marrying him So what happened?

It was just by accident Accident?

Well, that's not entirely true. How can I explain it?

It's like when you look for something all over the place...

...and then you find it was right in front of you all along My mother always looks for her glasses when they're on her nose That's how it was How so?

He was so close at hand, I didn't realise he was the one So you did love him No, it wasn't like I was in love with him I'd known him well since childhood, and I knew I could trust him That means you love him No, it's different. It's the feeling of being totally at ease with him Don't you understand?

If that’s not being in love, what is?

No, it's not Yes, it is You've fallen in love with him You're in love Am I?

Yes, you are. Don't make me hit you!

You better not. I know how you hit Right!

Grab her, Mother! What's going on here?

Aya, where's that thing? What thing?

The thing I brought up the other day. It's about this big, and yellow I was sure I'd left it here somewhere Madam, you're wanted Oh, all right

What's she looking for? I don't know She's always like that. She’ll be back, anyway

I wonder if she’s getting senile I can't leave home to get married with her like that Wouldn't your husband live here with you?

No way. No real man would live with his wife's family

See? And she usually comes back once more Really?

I'm happy for you. You're lucky you found a man you love I'm sure our new life together won't be easy There will be a lot of difficulties and inconveniences to deal with I'll have to scrimp and work really hard And what about your boss's plan? I declined this morning What did he say?

He laughed that I was old-fashioned for a modern girl That's funny. He's upstairs right now And Mr Manabe's with him Why not take a peek from the next room?

No Come on, it'll be fun He's quite good-looking No Come on. Why not? It'll be all right No, I'd rather not. I don't need any more husbands Don't worry. Come on I may marry whoever's left. Let's go!

We shouldn’t It's fine!

Let's not Come on!


I wonder if we should give her our blessing She's impossible

I just don't know I feel sorry for her

Let's talk to her again and make sure Maybe we should She said she's decided, but she might have second thoughts

I'm back!

I'm home. Sorry I'm late Welcome home I went to see Aya Did you?

Have you eaten?

I'll fix myself something. Don't bother. I'll help myself There are some leftover croquettes Good. Thanks


Thanks for the food


Are you worried because I'm marrying a man with a child?

That's one reason Please don't be worried I'm not worried But mother feels sorry for you I saw her crying in the kitchen last night

But I love children Father and mother don't see it the same way as you do Mitsuko will grow up, and what happens when you have your own child...?

It’ll be fine. I've given it a lot of thought It’ll be all right The situation's not that unusual. I'm sure I can manage But... Don't you worry, Sister I'm confident I can do it Is that so? That's all right, then

Maybe I'm an optimist Being without money doesn't worry me like it does other people I'm fine with it Are you sure? Yes I'll stop worrying, then

Frankly, I felt I couldn’t trust a man...

...who was still unattached and drifting around at 40 I think a man with a child is more trustworthy I admire you, Noriko Why?

I knew nothing about marriage when I got married

But what will become of the family when I leave home?

You needn't worry about that Your father and mother only want you to be happy So don't worry But it’ll be harder for you without me It’ll be fine. You and I can compete from now on At what? Economising And I don't intend to lose Neither do I You’ll have to stop eating shortcake Of course! It's too expensive But if we’re given some, I'll eat it

Come on, it's lovely down here!


I'm glad you came

Congratulations

Thank you for everything over all these years No, I should thank you Shall we call Aya and go out for dinner?

Well, thank you for asking, but I really must be going I see Well, do stop by if you ever come up to Tokyo Thank you very much And take good care of your husband

Manabe will probably be disappointed, but tough luck

If I were younger and single and proposed to you, would you accept?

You'd turn me down too?

Hey, come and take a good look at Tokyo

Tokyo's not so bad


Putting it back on?

I can't decide Leave it off

Please look towards me

Keep still, Isamu

Madam, chin down a little, please

Ready, everyone?

Thank you Thank you Could you take one more picture of my mother and father?

Good idea Really? All right Very well


You look wonderful together Don't make fun of us It's been years since the last time


I'm finished Me, too You've eaten everything up!

Where are you going, Isamu?

To poo

Thanks for the meal

Now you're marrying Yabe, I wish I hadn't sent him to Akita But knowing he was leaving made me realise how I felt about him Three or four years will pass in no time Yes, it’ll go quickly We've lived in this house for 16 years already That's right It was spring and Noriko had just left primary school That's right. She was just a little older than Minoru is now She used to wear a ribbon in her hair...

...and she was always singing She was so cute

Children grow up so quickly What will you do now, Koichi? I'm going to start a practice here Really? And what about your hospital post?

I'll keep working there in the evenings I see...

Well...we're parting ways, but we’ll be together again I wish we could live together forever...

...but that's impossible Father and Mother, you must visit us now and then from Yamato

I'm sorry, it's all my doing No, it's not your fault. It was inevitable

Noriko, please take good care of your health I hear Akita's very cold

Yes, you must take care and keep healthy Then we’ll be sure to get together again


Hey, look there A bride is passing by

I wonder what sort of family she's marrying into

I wonder how Noriko is Our family’s been scattered But you and I, we've done quite well

We've experienced a lot in our years together

We shouldn’t ask for too much

We've been so happy


THE END