Peace March Journals 平和行進の日記

5 Days to go before the Peace March – May Day

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The May Day stage at Yoyogi Park

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May 1 is the International Labor Day. They call it May Day in Japan.

Many labor movements and NGOs gathered in Yoyogi Park in the morning. There was a big stage and one choral group was practicing backstage. They are a combination of the best choir singers around Japan and some of them are also members the group of JAL workers who were unjustly laid off. Aichan and I met with Bunchan in the same place and practiced The song, Aruite Yuko, with them.

The song goes like this:

Let’s go walk Let’s go walk
あるいてゆこう あるいてゆこう 
Aruite yuko  Aruite yuko

Let’s go walk, one step at a time
あるいてゆこう いっぽずつ
Aruite yuko  ippo zutsu

Let’s go walk, Let’s go walk
あるいてゆこう あるいてゆこう 
Aruite yuko  Aruite yuko

With our faces forward
まえを むいて
Mae wo muite

Don’t have to hurry it’s okay
いそがなくても いいんだ
Isoganakutemo iinnda

Don’t have to rush it’s okay
あせらなくても いいんだ
Aseranakutemo iinnda

You can stop and take some rest, it’s okay
やすみながらで いいんだ
Yasuminagarade iinnda

At your own pace, it’s okay
じぶんのペースで いいんだ
Jibun no pe-su de iinnda

Now, your very first one step
いま ふみだした あなたの いっぽは
Ima fumidashita anata no ippo wa

Will certainly lead us to the future
たしかに みらいへ つながってゆく
Tashika ni mirai e tunagatte yuku

Now, your very first one step
いま ふみだした あなたの いっぽで
Ima fumidashita anata no ippo de

Will change something (will make a difference)
なにかが かわるでしょう
Nanika ga kawaru desyo

This is one of the many songs that we will sing during the Peace March. The melody is easy to follow and is encouraging. Very appropriate for the march.

Several minutes after, we followed them onstage and sang Aruite Yuko. I also delivered a short speech of solidarity on the fight against nuclear weapons. And invited them to join and support us in the Peace March this year. After that, we met with the other members of Gensuikyo at the other side of the park and promoted the Peace March to everyone We kept shouting ‘kampa onegaishimasu’ as we asked for donations. We met so many people from different backgrounds. There were lawyers, a DJ, a sax player, an anime director, a champion boxer, journalists, leaders of labour unions, people from the Japan Communist Party (JCP), women’s groups, and many people from the peace movement. We received many donations and we were very thankful. Words of the day: Arigatou Gozaimasu! And it is good to note the unrelenting charm of Tirochan. He surely knows a lot of people and he knows how to get them involved. 🙂

The next set of photos is a collection of some of the the kind people who donated for the Peace March. They were taken by Tiro Maekawa and Ai Satoh. We were like on a photobooth mode for a time. They gave kampa (donations) and we took photos. 🙂

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name… He is a famous director of anime films. He had movie projects with lessons of peace.

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They told me he is a popular sax player. Sugoi!

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… He is a peace journalist working with…

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With Kasai Kimiyo. She is the President of New Japan Women’s Association (Shinfujin). Shinfujin works closely with Gensuikyo in promoting peace and abolition of nuclear weapons.

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They told me that these guys will be the DJs for the Peace March on May 6. That’s really cool! Imlook forward to meeting them again.

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With …. He is a champion in the sport of boxing. Perhaps in a weight division higher than Manny Pacquiao. He is also famous in Tokyo for making very delicious tofu. What a combination!

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There were many donors aside from the ones we were able to take photos with. The touching part of it was to see various organizations from different sectors support each other strongly. Many groups gave us kampa and people from Gensuikyo also gave kampa to them and signed in their signature campaigns. It was like a big familynof caring citizens.

The program ended with an encouraging song and we sang ‘Gambaroo’ as we did fist pumps. Gambaroo means ‘Let’s work hard / hang in there / let’s try hard.’ As a final part, we marched along the upscale streets of Tokyo – one of them was Omotesando. It was a good march joined by some 20000 people. We shouted ‘NO NUKES! YES PEACE!’ and ‘Abolish Nuclear Weapons NOW!’ (in Japanese). It is also good to note that a couple of American guys joined the Gensuikyo team during the march. They said that they usually attend the May Day rally in the US. But since they are here today, they decided to join the demonstration in Japan.


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Last photo was taken by Taku Tomita.

This entry was written by Peace March Journals and published on May 1, 2013 at 11:04 am. It’s filed under Everyday Japanese, Peace Movement and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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