What is a summary of each chapter of "A Jar of Dreams" by Yoshiko Uchida?
After the incident with Wilbur Starr, Rinko notices that her father has become more confident in his manner. One Sunday at dinner, Papa announces that he is planning to start his own garage and repair shop at home. Mama worries about the risk of such a venture, but Uncle Kanda surprisingly saves the day: he offers to become a partner in Papa's mechanic business. The family is thrilled and grateful when Uncle Kanda gives Papa five hundred dollars to start his new business. Papa then announces that the shop will be called the Kanda-Tsujimura Garage and Repair Shop.
The family eventually decides to take Aunt Waka to see the sights in San Francisco. Uncle Kanda is invited as well, but he does not show up for church on Sunday. Eventually, the family learns that Uncle Kanda has been hit by a car and is in the hospital. Aunt Waka confesses that Uncle Kanda may have gone to Stockton to talk to Cal; she tells everyone that he is especially concerned about Cal giving up on college.
Rinko goes to visit Uncle Kanda in the hospital. She is happy that he is still alive. It turns out that Uncle Kanda has managed to convince Cal to continue his college education. He also tells Rinko that Cal has a message for her: that he will study hard to be an engineer if she will work hard to fulfill her own dreams of becoming a teacher. Encouraged by her brother's determination, Rinko agrees.
Rinko soon discovers that Aunt Waka is returning to Japan. She is sad but understands why her aunt must leave. Rinko also realizes how much her aunt has taught her. Through Aunt Waka, Rinko has learned to appreciate her unique heritage. She is American but also Japanese. As the novel ends, Rinko finally understands that she never needs to feel ashamed of her background. All she needs to do is believe in her own worth and be the best person she can be. Most of all, Rinko learns why Aunt Waka is so special: she embodies courage, humility, and honor. She is proud of who she is and has never stopped believing in herself.
In these two chapters, we are introduced to Rinko Tsujimura and her family, which consists of her father (Papa, Shintaro), mother (Mama), older brother (Cal), younger brother (Joji), mother's sister (Aunt Waka), and Joji's dog (Maxwell). The story begins with Rinko coming home to a messy kitchen one summer's day. Her mother, a maid, is out cleaning Mrs. Phillip's house. Rinko is shocked because her mother never leaves the kitchen dirty. In the midst of the mess, Rinko discovers a letter from her Aunt Waka.
Because it is written in Japanese characters, Rinko cannot read it. She takes the letter to her father. Her father, a barber, hopes to be a mechanic someday. He translates the letter for her and tells her that her Aunt Waka is coming to stay with them for the summer. Aunt Waka is a widow; her husband died of tuberculosis and her young son of dysentery. To make room for Aunt Waka, Rinko learns that she will probably move into her brother's room as soon as Cal leaves for his summer job in Stockton. In these chapters, we are also briefly introduced to Mrs. Sugar, Rinko's favorite neighbor, and Wilbur Starr, the owner of Starr Laundry. Rinko does not like Mr. Starr because he is racist.
Rinko discovers that Papa is more than five months late on his barber shop rent payments. He risks eviction if he doesn't pay up. The family is distressed, and Cal offers to send home all the money from his summer job in Stockton. Rinko's father rejects the idea, stating that Cal needs the money for college. Mama suggests starting a home laundry. Although the rest of the family is initially less than enthusiastic, they eventually decide to give her idea a try.
When Rinko mentions Mama's idea to Mrs. Sugar, the elderly lady offers the family her old washing machine for the project. The washer doesn't work, but Papa is able to fix it up. He also builds a counter for sorting the clothes and a chute to facilitate the delivery of the laundry bundles down to the basement.
The family receives a threatening note and suspects that the owner of the Starr Laundry is behind it. Rinko is worried about what the note could mean, but Papa tells her not to worry. Soon, the family discovers that the threat is serious. Papa has his tires slashed, and laundry bundles that belong to Mama's customers are picked up before Papa can get to each house. Again, the family suspects that Starr Laundry is trying to run them out of business. To outsmart Wilbur Starr, Papa tells Tsujimura Laundry customers not to put out their laundry until Starr Laundry closes at 5:30 pm.
Meanwhile, the Tsujimuras lose some of their customers to Starr Laundry. There is a bright spot, however, when Cal comes home for a visit. Mama makes a special dinner, and even Uncle Kanda attends. The happy mood is soon destroyed when Cal, anxious to help his parents, declares that he will quit college to work for a while. An argument ensues, and Cal is forced to rethink his offer. Rinko's parents want Cal to finish his education and are committed to helping him. Meanwhile, Joji announces that he will put Maxwell outside to guard the house.
Rinko's brother, Cal, finally leaves for Stockton. We learn that he will be picking fruit all summer. Rinko is sad that her brother won't be home for a while, so she decides to call her friend, Tami. We learn that Rinko feels more comfortable talking to friends than speaking up in class. In school, she feels self-conscious and inadequate. To prepare for Aunt Waka's visit, Papa kills two chickens for the welcome dinner, and Mama prepares some Japanese delicacies.
The family eventually drives to the pier to pick Aunt Waka up. She arrives in a blue kimono, and Rinko is surprised to see that her mother's younger sister already has graying hair. The family celebrates Aunt Waka's arrival by enjoying the special dinner Mama made. Mrs. Sugar arrives with a spice cake but does not stay long. Tami and her mother also make an appearance. Later, Uncle Kanda, Papa's friend, comes to meet Aunt Waka. Tami tells Rinko that her mother plans to arrange a marriage between Aunt Waka and Uncle Kanda. Meanwhile, Rinko learns to her surprise that her aunt is a devout Buddhist; she wonders how Aunt Waka will adjust to attending church with Mama.
One night, Rinko is sleeping when she wakes up to Maxwell's barking. The barking eventually stops, however, and the family discovers that Maxwell has been shot. The dog dies from its wounds, and the grief-stricken family is forced to bury the beloved dog. Everyone suspects that Wilbur Starr is behind the atrocious act, but no one can confirm his part in it. Eventually, Aunt Waka suggests that someone should confront Wilbur Starr. Papa agrees with Aunt Waka and says that he will discuss the matter with Uncle Kanda.
Two days later, Papa and Uncle Kanda make their way to Wilbur Starr's shop. They confront Mr. Starr about his shameful behavior and declare that Tsujimura Laundry will continue to operate. To cover up his embarrassment, Wilbur tries to bully the two men. However, he fails to intimidate them. Rinko and Joji watch the entire exchange, but their presence is eventually discovered. Mr. Starr proceeds to abuse the children verbally and tries to use physical force against them. However, Papa stops Mr. Starr in time.