Japan for Kids
We’re so glad you came to visit us! Sam and I had an awesome time in Japan. We keep talking about the adventures we had with Shou. You remember Shou, don’t you? He’s our new friend who saved me from all the wasabi that I ate. He showed us how to fold origami and took us to see the sunrise from Mt. Fuji. But that’s not all Shou also introduced us to another new friend. His name is Haruto and he loves stories. Haruto is always reading and even makes his own comic books! I have always loved to read and write, so I asked Haruto to tell us one of his favorite stories. He told us the story of Momotaro, the Peach Boy. I wrote it down for you to read. Hope you like it!
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Once upon a time, in Okayama, lived an old man and an old woman. One day, while washing clothes in the river, the woman saw a peach floating toward her in the water. It was the biggest, most beautiful peach she had ever seen. She decided to take it home for dinner, but when she went to cut it open, the peach split in half and a boy popped out! The old man and old woman named the boy Momotaro, which means Peach Boy in Japanese, and raised him as their son.
After Momotaro had grown older and stronger, he decided to defeat the mean ogres who lived on Ogre Island. They did mean things in the nearby villages and had to be stopped! The old man gave Momotaro armor and a sword and the old woman gave him delicious millet dumplings for the journey.
On the way to Ogre Island, Momotaro met a dog, a monkey, and a pheasant. The animals were angry at each other and almost attacked Momotaro when he approached. But Momotaro was kind and smart and gave each of the animals one of the old woman’s dumplings in exchange for their help. We can defeat the ogres together, he said. They’re the ones you should be fighting. Momotaro built a boat and, together, the dog, the monkey, the pheasant, and the Peach Boy sailed to Ogre Island.
The ogres lived inside a big fortress with high walls. Momotaro and his companions couldn’t get past the gate! With a flapping of wings, the pheasant soared through the air and snatched the key from behind the castle walls. The ogres roared in anger as the bird flew back to his new friends and gave the key to the monkey. The monkey was quick and sneaky. He crept up to the wall and unlocked the gate while the ogres weren’t looking. Momotaro and the dog charged the ogres and caught them by surprise. With his animal friends by his side, Momotaro defeated the ogres of Ogre Island. The ogres promised never to attack the villages again and gave Momotaro all of their treasures.
The old man and old woman were overjoyed when Momotaro returned home, safe and sound. They had a celebration! The Peach Boy and his family lived happily ever after.
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I hope you liked the story of Momotaro. Haruto told it so well I just had to share it with you. Japan is one of our favorite new places, and we’re so glad you could come along!
Have fun, as always,
Sofia & Sam