Rice

Where I work today (February 2009) we have a creative printing studio that is free for all employees. One can upload and print images, make calendars with photos of one's own choosing, and generally burn through paper and mass amounts of printer ink and toner without ever cracking a wallet. There are some limits (like you can only print out 5 custom calendars per month, 5 24" x 36" posters per month, 25 greeting cards per month, etc...), but it definitely is a perk worth taking advantage of.

Most of the pictures I took in Korea over 20 years ago were developed into slides. I think I thought slides would weather the test of time better than photos. The net result today is that I have tons of slides that nobody will ever see. (Secretly I do have a slide projector in my garage and I could put on a mean show, but I never have been the type to load every single photo from a digital camera up into Flickr or Facebook just because I took the picture. I only load ones I like and that I think turned out well. Show some discernment people please!)

At the creative printing studio there is a scanner with an adapter for scanning slides. One can scan 12 or 16 slides at one time. I am just learning how to use it. The quality--as you'll see below--is not always great, but it allows me to share a few nuggets from days gone by. Here is the first in a series of such slides scanned to digital.

May 1987. Rice:

I grew up with a huge cornfield right across the street from my house. Down the hill behind was Mint, Sugar Beets, Potatoes, Onions. We had a strong FFA group at my high school. I certainly was no stranger to agriculture, but I had never seen rice farmed before arriving in Korea. I guess that is the main reason I took the following pictures of rice.

Driving from Pusan to the burbs to teach English at a corporate gig:

Let's take a break here and finish up tomorrow:
This looks like as good a place as any to dry the rice:
One time in Maui in 2005-ish, we took our 2-year old son to a Korean restaurant. We ordered full meals for ourselves, but only steamed rice for him. Oddly, the 아줌마 was very surprised by that. I was surprised that she was surprised. Sometimes I just can't help myself and I told her it was perfectly natural because the boy's father was a Korean farmer from 경상남도 in a previous life. She gave a look somewhere between shock, confusion, belief, and offended Christian sensibility. But all she could muster was:

"그렇구나."

I'll let you, the reader, provide your own translation of that...

3 comments:

Otto Silver said...

The slides have a natural burn to them. Just run them through Photoshop, turn them B&W or Sepia and you are all set.

I had a side road right in front of my apartment turned in to a rice processing area. Because I normal keep the blinds on that window drawn, I only noticed it as they were sweeping up the final grains. I would have loved to take a photo. Next year I am leaving that blind open. That Ajuma is not slipping by me again!

White Rice said...

Thanks for the tip. I've got a few more series of slides to post. After that I'll try to monkey around with Photoshop.
I've been subscribed to "I, Foreigner" for a while now and quite enjoy it.
Thanks for reading and for the comment.

Cammy said...

I would like to watch the mean photo slide show please.