Carol Burke is a Hawke's Bay local who lives in Napier. Mary O'Neill talked to Mrs Burke about Siniti, her pen friend from Japan who sent her a doll in 1961.
"Carol in what language did you have a correspondence with Siniti, your Japanese friend?"
"Did you have to teach English your pen friend from Japan?"
"When did you hear from him last?"
"It was long time ago I think, I corresponded with him for about 4 years."
"When did people of Hawke's Bay begin to have a pen friends?"
"My mother had a pen friend when she was a girl and she was born in 1925"
"Where was your mother's pen friend from?"
"Carol did many people in Hawke's Bay had a pen friend in your days?"
"People like to have pen friends. I think in 1950s-1960s a lot New Zealanders liked to have a pen friend from another country because we like to hear what people are doing in other countries. All the magazines used to come by boat to Napier. You had to wait 6 weeks for them to come. Before the TV we did not know what was going on. We used to go to Orchards in Hawke's Bay. As a school trip (school project) and we all had a letter which we wrote in the classroom, which we put in the boxes of apples for export, and often some people would have replied from England, or Europe."
Carol Burke donates her Japanese doll to our museum.