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Cucumbers heard 'round the world

When a ten year old says she wants a garden, and then gets it, and keeps wandering through the world of growing food for -ahem- some additional years, there's no guarantee about where it will lead.

Until very very recently, I thought of the "urban farming" movement as an American thing, I suppose, if I thought of it geographically at all. I know that there are folks all over the world shoving seeds into soil, and when it Italy of course met people interested in it, as well as those just growing food as they always have. But generally, I keep my head down (eyes whipping around wildly though, because seriously, lots of people, animals, and plants here. Plenty busy) and don't think about The Big World Out There much.

Specifically, I had not given much though to the growing interest in local food in . . . Korea.

At least, not until recently. A person from one of the three main networks in Korea got my name from. . . well, from the network of local gardening folks. I'm starting to think it was really the "Oh-no-not-me" network. They were filming a documentary on local eating, because of the exponentially growing interest in the subject in Korea, and could they film my yard? My yard that looks as though it hasn't quite gotten enough water for a long time? My yard that has some. . . stuff in it that it didn't need to? My yard and house that are lived in but rarely kept up?

Guess what I said? Yes, let us all say it together, the thing Eric threatens to engrave on my tombstone: "How hard could it be?"(Cue wild laughter.)

Fortunately I am wealthy in spouse and friends and children, and a bunch of people pulled together and cleaned the house until it was sparkly - for our place, and the yard looked mostly like not-crazy people lived there, and when the reporter showed up all was well.



Instead of feeling weird, it was like hanging out with someone nice (Hello, Sunghan Lee!!) and talking about what I'm deeply interested and fairly competent at -- gardening and cooking food, with an eye toward local eating. Heck, where I live, it's practically a religion; you just absorb it with the weather.

Baby neighbor eats some tomatoes -- she's internationally cute.










After all kinds of running around outside, Sarafina and I cooked a quick meal on camera and then we shopped at a store featuring local produce. Everyone was great, but it was a long day. I know the reporter had a good few hours still to go; he must be more tired than I am!

Crazy privilege to get to be involved, even in a tiny way, with people as interested in local, homegrown food as I am across the world! The program will air on September 15, so if you're watching Korean television, there's a new documentary coming up.

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