Are they emigrants our exiles, these young Japanese in Greenwich Village and the Lower East Side of New York? The ones who love Jazz and buy their vintage clothes on the streets between Avenue A and First Avenue and speak in Broken Wigwag, their very own version of English. Is Tompkins Square Park a sanctuary from what they perceived as a stultifying Tokyo, the place where their lives had been neatly laid out for them, much too neatly? Yasuyo (Suchi) Asano, a denizen of the area for the last five years, tells us in a very poignant way that 'life here can be marginal' but you have to put that against her native Tokyo where the order of the day is 'don't dream, don't hope, just follow the orders'. And that contrast between cultures makes the overwhelming melancholy and sadness of emigre life seem bearable, especially when it is laced with her wonderful humour and delightful self-mockery.