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Memories of C&O Kansai

Terry Nakamura, my “Senpai” at Worcester College in Oxford, retired from the post of Honorary Secretary of the C&O this April after drinking thousands of bottles of wines at various C&O parties and golf matches over a period of more than 30 years. As the first secretary of C&O Kansai, I would like to share my memories and the history of the reinauguration of C&O Kansai, which was one of Terry’s greatest contributions to C&O.

Early in 1998, Terry suddenly telephoned me when I was working hard at the Osaka headquarters of Sumitomo Bank (now SMBC). He told me that Mr. Eikichi Itoh, KBE wanted to reestablish C&O Kansai and had asked I help Terry support him. Since it is natural in our generation that “Kouhai” should obey an order from “Senpai”, I accepted the request without hesitation.

At first it was not easy to find would-be members for the new C&O Kansai. Eikichi-san, Boyd-san, the Minister at the British Consulate and the staff of the British Council at Osaka, however, gave tremendous me support (I was working on this project even during ordinary business hours), and I was able to assemble around 100 members from the western area of Japan. Here it should be noted that members of the C&O Kansai come not only from the Kansai area but also from Hiroshima, Kyushu, Hokuriku, Nagoya, and so on.

On 6th November 1998, an Inaugural Dinner was held at the Century Club Osaka after 9 months’ preparation. Eikichi-san and Terry made splendid opening speeches. Boyd-san gave a toast with humorous comments. Then Sir David Wright, HM Ambassador, gave a wonderful congratulatory speech. Below can be viewed the agendas of the dinner and business matters, and the constitution of the C&O Kansai.

There have been many events organized by C&O Kansai so far (I myself left Osaka for Tokyo in October 2000 on company orders). Among them I will never forget the first “Ohanami” held at Eikichi-san’s home in Mikage (Rosa, Eikichi-san’s wife, started preparing delicious foods for this at 4:00 am), the First Anniversary party at Osaka Kogyo Club (Sir Stephen Gomersall, HM Ambassador, attended with his wife ), and a lunch at “Mankamerou” (a traditional Japanese restaurant) in Kyoto. Terry, of course, was always there.

Yoshi Shimizu (Worcester Oxford, 1992)
October, 2012

Posted in Submitted by huw.williams on Mon, 2012-11-19 15:00.
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