Memories of Tashme

I don’t have memories of how we got to Tashme, except to say that we drove there because my father, who was a doctor, was exempted from the expropriation of his car because there might be an occasion when a patient had to be moved from Tashme to a hospital in Vancouver. That’s my understanding of why he was able to keep his car. I do know we arrived in Tashme in early September of 1942. And we were initially assigned a house on Tashme Boulevard among the hastily constructed shacks of Tashme.

Sometime in the first year, another home was built for us, located near the hospital in Tashme to be close to the hospital.  It was specially built for us.  We had electricity and indoor plumbing, in contrast to other shacks and houses in Tashme. It was a duplex. We lived in one side, as a family, and Dr. Kuzuhara, the dentist in Tashme, occupied the other half of the duplex.

My memories of living in Tashme were of being by myself most of the time because we lived away from the rest of the community which to me, was a bit of a problem in that I had very few friends. Normally you have friends because you live nearby with other children, but I didn’t.  This changed when I started school, first to kindergarten, then grades one and two. But I had some distance to go to attend, because we were living in a place quite far away from the rest of the community. So, I felt that because of my relative isolation and my father’s status in the community, I didn’t feel like I fit in with the other children of my age.  And so I do have memories of feeling lonely and on the outside.

On the plus side, the site was on a flat farm area in a deep valley with trees and two creeks for fishing and lots of space to play.  There were many community activities like baseball, boy scouts, regular movies, concerts and school activities.  The community thrived to provide recreational activities organized by the high school students.  So in many ways it was fun for young people.

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