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Nikkei Names: Writing Workshop in Chicago

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Carolyn Chiye Funai

I was born in Waimea, Kauai, Hawaii and was given the name Chiye Takita (da).  I was told that my name Chiye means “wisdom”.  Taketa—“Take” means bamboo & “ta” means rice paddy field or as explained to me to mean bamboo rice paddy.  My nickname growing up was “Blondie” because I was a swimmer & exposure to salt water & bright sun made my hair lighter in color.  In college in Colo, threy called me  Cheesie —I don’t know how I got that name but, perhaps because they couldn’t pronounce Chiye (my Japanese name). 

Funai means; “Funa” (small boat written in Japanese), “I” means entrance = boat entrance.

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Carolyn Chiye Funai
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Photo taken and name story provided on July 19, 2014 at the Church of Christ Presbyterian (Chicago, IL) as a part of Discover Nikkei’s workshop warm-up excercise in conjunction with the More »

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