Carol: One group photo before we go. *Sigh* I love the Sumo wrestling stable. Can we stay here for Christmas?
Hattori Hanzō: NO!
Carol: Whoa. Okay. Noboru, do you mind taking our photo with Mr. Hanzō and…who’s the samurai?
Dave: That’s Kenchu. He’s Hattori’s bodyguard. He goes everywhere with him.
Noboru: Okay. Everyone say Mochi!
All of us: MOCHI!
Carol: Japanese Mandarin Oranges.
Dave: Excellent. Guess where we’re going next? Japanese orange groves!
Mike: I like regular oranges better.
Dave: Sorry, Mike, we’re not going to Florida this trip.
Hattori Hanzō: We’re leaving NOW. Follow me.
Carol: Wow. Beautiful! Let’s go pick some!
Dave: According to the research I’ve done, the Mandarin oranges tradition came to Canada by way of the Japanese immigrants in the 1880’s. In Japan, they celebrate the New Year with these tasty oranges, so their families would mail them these oranges from Japan for New Years. They shared them with the locals and this tradition became part of the Canadian Christmas scene. They are rather delicious.
Mike: Oscar and Donner don’t look like they like oranges.
Dave: Oh. Right. Cats don’t like the smell of orange too much. Some people put orange peels in their gardens to keep the cats from reeking havoc. You should have used that in your pumpkin patch that year, Carol.
Carol: Don’t I know it. The neighbour’s cat used the pumpkin patch as his litter basket that year. Oh well. I’ll know better for next time.
Dave: Mr. Hanzō has organized a special meeting for us. We’re about to meet this orange grove’s official mascot and his wife.
Carol: Joy! Joy? Is that you?
Joy: Shh…Carol…Yes. It’s me. Just shush…come over here…
Carol: Joy! What are you doing here? In Japan?
Joy: Look, I got out of the hoosegow on good behavior. I met Stanley, the orange mascot, while he was in North America on business. He’s VERY rich and he knows NOTHING of my past. Please…don’t mention this to him. Please don’t.
Carol: Okay. Well, if you’ve paid your debt to society, I’ll keep that bit of information to myself.
Joy: Thanks. Okay…we’ve got a gift for you. So, we have to get back to that.
Stanley: On behalf of this Japanese orange farm, we would like to present you with some of our best oranges. We hope you will enjoy them.
Carol: Thank you, Japan, for the lovely Christmas oranges! I love, love, love them. They taste the very best of all the oranges.
Dave: Thank you, Stanley and Joy!
Hattori Hanzō: We have to go now. Goodbye Stanley. Goodbye Joy.
Dave: Okay. It’s time to go. Are you ready for our next stop in Japan? Here.We.Go…