Sister – high school
In the prefecture I grew up in, almost all public high schools were segregated by sex until I graduated in the late ’90s. My sister entered the same girls’ high school that our mother attended 23 years earlier.
The school was in the city that was a 40-minute train ride away. My sister woke up at 6 in the morning, and my mother drove her to the nearest station. From the station in the city, she walked about 20 minutes to get to school. I saw my sister less, but I was still able to get a glimpse of her high school life from her accounts.
The school uniform had not changed the design since my mother’s era. The school bag was an ugly black leather briefcase and was as heavy as a bundle of books. But with her long hair down and spectacled, she looked mature and intelligent, even in the hideous post-war era style.