A documentary about a village that practised sericulture, the farming of silkworms and their cocoons, which is now almost deserted due to the lack of demand for the cocoons, featured a strange woman who made an even stranger sound whenever she acknowledged what someone had said.
'Journeys in Japan' gave an interesting account of the village of Nanmoku, in Gunma prefecture, and was presented by Theodora Forgo, a Hungarian, who spoke fluent Japanese.
When she spoke to some villagers, she made a very queer sound very much like a cow lowing, to show that she had understood. The sound lasted about 5 seconds.
When she conversed with her guide, Sato, she made the same disconcerting noise.
It came out in an interview with 78-year-old former farmer Ichikawa Genzo that the silkworms were fed on mulberry leaves, to which Forgo replied:
When Yoneda Maduro, a man who had moved to Nanmoku with his wife 15 years ago, explained that he had done so to enjoy the quiet, scenic setting, Forgo lowed:
Sato said he had been a resident for three years, having been lured there by the charming people. Forgo hummed:
"Mmmmmmmmmmm," which was slightly shorter than the other acknowledgements.
At one point, during an interview with 32-year-old Okobata Tsutomu, Forgo repeatedly made the bizarre sound, and her interviewee looked so unnerved by it, he seemed to be on the verge of asking her:
"What the fuck's that daft sound about?"
But he didn't, and Forgo kept on mooing.
The programme was very interesting.