Conversations quotes

Chairman: He would never tell you himself; he is far too modest. We were fighting in Manchuria together. There was an explosion. He protected me from the worst of it. As you might imagine, I owe him quite a debt. Nobu has taught me a great deal - patience, for example. And I in turn have tried to teach him: you have to savor life while you can.

Sayuri: The lesson of the cherry blossom!
Chairman: That is why Nobu likes you. We must not expect happiness, Sayuri. It is not something we deserve. When life goes well, it is a sudden gift; it cannot last forever! Hatsumomo: "Sayuri"... A name as sweet as she is! I'm afraid these days even a common chambermaid can call herself a geisha. So, it's nice to see such a sincere young maiko, isn't it?

General [laughing]: Why yes!
Mameha [to Sayuri]: Surely you would like to thank Hatsumomo for her gracious compliments?
Sayuri: There is so much I would like to say to Hatsumomo.
Hatsumomo: Sometimes, the smartest remark is silence.
Sayuri: What better advice to follow than your own?
Mameha: Sayuri... Hatsumomo: Ah, a maiko. I was one myself, once.
Sayuri: Of course... But it's been such a very long, long...long, long...time. [Everyone laughs] Baron: If there had been any tea in that pot, I believe Sayuri would have gotten it out!

[other men laugh]
Mameha: Don't tease, Baron. It is her very first time. Mameha: Now that your beloved Granny is gone, you have no need for a maid.

Mother: I would never question the great Mameha. But...you could choose anyone in the hanamachi!
Mameha [laughing]: You flatter me.
Mother: I'd give you my Pumpkin, if she were not already tied to Hatsumomo.
Mameha: Please, I'd never dream of asking.
Mother: Besides, I could always sell Chiyo to Mrs. Tatsuyo...
Mameha: With your eye for beauty and nose for talent, surely you can see what a terrible waste that would be?
Mother: If you were not the kind-hearted geisha I know you to be, then I might think you were scheming against Hatsumomo!
Mameha: Then I'm grateful that you don't have a suspicious mind, Mrs. Nitta.
Mother: Perhaps you could pique my interest with...
Mameha: Yes?
Mother: Your offer.
Mameha [pauses]: I will cover Chiyo's schooling, and all of her expenses, until after her debut.
Mother: Now I am certain, you are teasing.
Mameha: I could not be more sincere. If Chiyo has not repaid her debt within six months after her debut --
Mother: Impossible! Too little time!
Mameha: Then I will pay you twice over.
Mother: What...? [pause] Why...no geisha could ever...!
Mameha: I am sure you will not object to one trivial condition?
Mother: Yes?
Mameha: If Chiyo erases her debt in the time allowed...you will have no part in her future earnings. Mother: It's too good to be true. Mameha is up to something.

Auntie: She isn't in it for the money, that much is for certain. Rumor has it, ever since the prime minister bought her mizuage, she's been rich!
Mother: That so? Absurd to think she noticed Chiyo!
Hatsumomo: It's that kimono. She remembers how you destroyed it. Now, she wants to get even.
Mother: An odd picture, isn't it? Hatsumomo sweeping to teahouse after teahouse with our little Pumpkin, and Mameha with our maid!

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