After reading Mr. Jones’s post, I acknowledge the fact that I did feel grossed out about some of the strange foods I encountered. For example, while I was watching a TV program about insect foods from the Discovery Channel, I found my self having goosebumps all the time. In South America, it is not uncommon to eat caterpillars, larvaes, and ants. What’s more, there are many restaurants that specialize on these strange foods.

I felt disgusted, refusing to concern about the culture of the region and reasons for eating those foods. But, after reading the story about strange food in Things Fall Apart, I realize that these strange foods may be practical solutions for nutrition problems. Some cultures might lack food that has particular nutrition such as protein, causing nutrition problems for those people. Insects and other creatures might have been perfect solutions to those problems: they are rich in proteins, abundant, and easy to catch. Voila! People started eating these foods that might seem strange to others.

Whether it is disgusting or not, I thought I should appreciate these strange foods for a purpose. Nowadays, we have food shortages. Shortages of rice- Korea’s staple food- eventually caused some countries such as India and Cambodia to prohibit the farmers from exporting rice to other countries so that the country can feed their people. Thus, in the future when we can’t get enough food to feed ourselves, we might have to turn to insects or other things for alternate food sources.

Like I said in the previous article(Back to Nature I), Fall is coming. But there is one peculiar incident occuring near my house: I still hear birds chirping. It would not seem weird to me when I hear birds chirp during summer. But at Fall?! I thought birds started migrating at Fall.

Some birds chirp annoyingly loud. Others sound pleasant. Fortunately, my mom was able to identify two species.

Chinese Oriole

 

Cuckoo

 

That’s it. Mom and I were only able to identify these two. And something more amazing is they are not suppose to be here at this time of the year! They should be heading south. But, they are still here  and I’m still glad that they are here. It was fascinating hearing Chinese Oriole’s “calls” as birdwatchers would say. The calls were very high in pitch, but it was still pleasant. It  was like listening to a Diva singing in an opera.

Because my house is right behind a mountain, I enjoy merits of nature such as listening to rare birds chirping at day or night. Other merits include fresh air and view of clear, vast sky.  I used to complain that I was living in a rural area and that I could not go anywhere without a car (because my house was so far away from stores and buildings). But I am slowly seeing the benefits of living in such a rural place.

                                                            

The sky is everywhere- of course. Even though the landscape changes, we still can see the blue sky. So sometimes, people may think it is pointless to go to a countryside to see the sky. Obviously, all we have to do is to look up and bam! There is the sky.

But, I beg to differ. The vastness and the beauty of the sky is radically different between cities and rural places. We can’t appreciate the magnetitude of the sky among the forest of sky scrapers. Buildings fragment the view of the sky, like reain forests breaking into fragments due to land developments. In cities the common impression of the sky from a city-person may be, “Ah, the weather is nice today.”

On the other hand, the countryside fully highlights the vastness of the sky. There is nothing to stop the blue sky from stretching over our heads. The sky is so wide and clear that I sometimes feel overwhelmed just by looking at it. For the countryside, the sky is the guardian of the place.

As the Fall is approaching, it gets easier to see the clear blue sky. However, as I walk through the streets of Seoul, it is sad to see small glimpses of the sky between the buildings. But I can enjoy the full view of the sky when I am at home, since my home is almost rural (no big land developments!).

So the next time I happen to have a free time, I decided to grab a cup of hot tea or coffee and enjoy viewing the sky for a while.