【Interview】An interview with Tsuyoshi Yoshida, a staff at Yokoyama Memorial Manga Museum

We interviewed Tsuyoshi Yoshidaon the day we visited Yokoyama Memorial Manga Museum. Tsuyoshi Yoshida, a manga lover, is born and brought up in Kochi. In this interview, he shared his love for the museum and recommended his favorite spots in Kochi.

  1. Could you please give us a brief self-introduction?

I am a staff at Yokoyama Memorial Manga Museum. I am born and brought up in Kochi.

  1. What do you think is the best feature of Yokoyama Memorial Manga Museum?

Even though there are many museums and galleries in Japan, but museums dedicated to manga arevery rare. Yokoyama Memorial Manga Museumis one of the rare manga-themed museums. The museum offers free access to 14000 manga books to visitors.

  1. Are there many foreign tourists visiting the museum?

There are more and more foreign visitors in these two to three years.  The majority of them come from China, Korea, Taiwan, andthe USA. While some manga lovers specially make this museum into their travel plan, some people don’t even know the manga writer, Ryuichi Yokoyama until they visit the museum.

  1. What is your favorite thing about living in Kochi?

I have many colleagues who are from other prefectures. The most frequent comment I received from them is how delicious Kochi cuisine is.  I also have an Osaka friend, who loves utsubo, a kind of fish in Kochi. He even asked me to reserve a restaurant where good utsubo dishes are made before he came.

  1. How long have you been working in Yokoyama Memorial Manga Museum? What is your favorite thing about the museum?

I have worked here for around 4 years. I can have unlimited access to a variety of manga books.Yokoyama Memorial Manga Museum locates on the 3rd to the 5th floor of this building. There is detailed information about the life story and artworks of the manga writer, Ryuichi Yokoyama. Ryuichi Yokoyama had a broad range of interests, therefore, the museum also displays many of his interesting collections on the 4th floor.

  1. As a native of Kochi, can you recommend some spots to tourists and leave a message to them?

When it comes to tourist attractions in Kochi, Kochi Castle is the first thing that comes to my mind. I also highly recommend Hirome market. Hirome market is lively both day andnight. If you want to have a taste of the local life, you need to go check out Hirome market. It is a place for people to eat, drink and have fun. All the market stall owners are friendly and hospitable. It is a place worth visiting.

Throughout this interview, we deeply felt the warm hospitality and kindness of Kochi people. Knowing that we were foreigners, Mr. Yoshida slowed down his speech while giving us the tour. Just by listening to his speech, we could feel Mr. Yoshida’s passion for his job.  He enjoyed getting lost in the world of manga and introducing people to the beauty of his hometown, Kochi through the museum.

Date of the interview: February, 2019