Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Be nice, give rice

Stop reading this right now and go here. You can learn new words AND give rice to starving folks. In less than five minutes I donated nearly 300 grains of rice.

OR, click here to learn about geography while donating flour. OR click here and donate five cents to this non-profit.

Have you ever seen how Japanese harvesters dry rice? Magnificent.

The picture above is from the Asia Rice Foundation. Specifically, Kazuko Tomiyama's 2004 "Rice in Japan" calendar:

The type of landscape that evokes nostalgia shows scenes that have a human touch. It is the diligent care of human hands that naturally creates this type of beauty. That is why they say, in farm households, that the harder the farming conditions, the more the heart is moved by the scenery that results.

In fact, it is just this kind of land that brings forth the abundance of creatures. Here, at Shiginoyachi Wetland, diving beetles, water scorpions, water bugs, giant water bugs, water mantises, and other predacious aquatic insects are found, not to mention amphibians such as the Japanese tree frog, wrinkled frog, and Shlegel's tree frog.

The local children are particularly proud that even the Japanese skimmer, a dragonfly suddenly rare elsewhere, still flies and hovers here. In a project with students from Tokyo, the children are carrying out a joint survey of the paddy field ecosystem.

That is all.

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