Until now we have seen the family (viewing itself as uchi) defining its guests at various points along a single axis, which moves from inside (uchi) to outside (soto). The uchi/soto calculations are made in terms of two points: host (insider) and guest (outsider). The guests are differentiated according to how "close" or "distant" they are gauged to be from one another. (See Modules 5.2―5.4 if you'd like to review this concept.) But what happens when a third party enters into this same situation?  Because the single uchi/soto axis has only two points, a shift is unavoidable. Someone (either the party that just entered the scene or the party that had previously been the soto outsider will have to be moved into uchi.

The above examples all hinge on a third party entering into a two-party interaction scenario. The crucial factor is that the newcomer(s) are more distant than the soto person in the former two-party relationship. As a result, the soto guest suddenly finds herself vaulted into uchi, where she usually assists the host in catering to the more distant newcomer(s). In the case of the bath, the foreigner who had already frequented the neighborhood bath for a month was in a soto relation to the neighborhood bathers. But when they both moved to the non-neighborhood bath, Janine was considered "closer" than the strangers in the non-neighborhood bath. Suddenly she found herself vaulted into their uchi .