Words & Expressions
・ーにはいいひびきがある：- has a nice ring to it.
・勝つチャンスはない：not stand the chance
・遠征をする：go on an expedition
・臼と杵：mortar and pestle
What is the meaning of the name ‘Momotaro’?
Momo means peach in Japanese and Taro was a common name for the firstborn male at that time.
Why did Momotaro want to go on the next expedition to ‘Onigashima’?
Because he wanted to crush the ogres who have been attacking people and plundering their food, crops, and treasures.
Listen to act 2
“Would you say that’s a baby boy?”
“That’s what it looks like to me.
What do you think?”
“I think it’s a gift from heaven.”
“Yes, the gods had a period on us.
Oh, all alone in our old age.
Heaven sent us a baby boy.
Isn’t he the sweetest baby we’ve ever seen?”
And he is quite healthy.
Look at the way he kicks his legs.
He’s quite strong for a baby.”
“Isn’t he now.
What should we call him?”
“How about Momotaro?”
That has a nice ring to it.
Hello there, Momotaro.”
And after all, Momotaro was a fitting name for the baby since Momo means peach in Japanese and Taro was a common name for the firstborn male at that time.
It was quite remarkable the way Momotaro grew.
With just one cup of rice, he became noticeably taller.
With two cups of rice, he seemed to grow bigger and with three cups of rice, he shot up like a bamboo shoot.
Soon he was considered the strongest lad in the area.
And anyone who challenged him to a wrestling match didn’t stand the chance.
（not stand the chance：勝つチャンスはない）
When he turned 15, Momotaro sat before his aging parents and said,
“I have some urgent business to attend to.
I’m going to go on an expedition to Onigashima to crash the ogres.
（go on an expedition：遠征をする）
I’ll be leaving tomorrow.
And when I return I will bring back all the treasures that the ogres have stolen from our people.”
The old man and woman were speechless.
The red and green ogres have been attacking people in the area plundering their food, crops, and treasures.
These cruel demons lived on an island called Onigashima.
The elderly couple knew that once their son had made up his mind nobody could change it.
So they brought out the mortar and pestle and started pounding millet in order to make Kibidango, special millet dumplings, used for centuries to increase stamina.
And to scare the ogres, they fashioned a colorful banner for the son to wear on his back that says ‘Momotaro, the strongest of all Japan’.
The next day, fully dressed for the journey with his swords and millet dumplings fastened to his waist and banner on his back, Momotaro set out for Onigashima.
（set out for：出発する）
“Son, eat your dumplings and take good care of yourself.”
“May the gods be with you, Momotaro.”
“Farewell mother, farewell father.
Please do not worry about me.
I will be back soon.”