Sunday, July 3, 2011

Back Home

I'm back home. The cold I got a few days ago has not relented; no more fever and the throat isn't sore any more but now I drag around an irritating cough instead. It'll pass. I developed the two rolls of 35mm Delta 400 that I took during the trip yesterday, and I'll start scanning the stuff today. I experienced my first development disaster - being tired and sick is not conducive to your attention span - so one of the rolls looks iffy, with a few creases and a fair amount of scratches1. I hope most images are salvageable, though I know some are not.


Monorail station in Naha.

My flight left at five in the afternoon. I went to Naha airport right in the morning, checked my bag, then took the very convenient monorail into the center. A place without rail transport just doesn't feel like a city to me; the monorail really improves my impression of Naha, which otherwise feels like a pleasant and a little sleepy town.

Ryukyu-Ya Cafe

Ryukyu-ya cafe is a couple of blocks away from the main street. Excellent coffee and a cool, silent, summery atmosphere. I spend half an hour there; had I had more time I could have sat there for most of the day. Good place.

Kokusai street is the main tourist street, with lots of stores selling Awamori, t-shirts and other omiyage. Go there to get souvenirs, then step off to the side streets on either side where you find a quiet town of small shops, sun-baked alleyways and small parks.

Naha Park Worker

A hilly park just off Kokusai street. This guy seemed to be working over lunch.


A set lunch of Okinawan soba and a mini plate of taco-rice. The soba.. not bad, much better than I remember having a couple of years ago. But it does seem Ishigaki-style soba really is different, and more agreeable to me than the Okinawan one. Taco-rice is always good. You want to make it? Easy: just make the stuff you need for Mexican tacos, then skip the taco shells and serve it on a plate over a bed of Japanese rice. Yummy!

Naha Colors

Vivid colors; that's my lasting impression of Naha and of Okinawa.

#1 Black and white development is easy. It is in fact so ridiculously forgiving that as long as you at least vaguely follow the general directions you're bound to get recognizable images. You need to really work at it to fail completely. People have been experimenting with urine, vitamin C, Paracetamol and instant coffee as developing agents with good success.

But if you want good images, consistently and reliably, then you do need to pay attention to detail. I didn't, this time, with predictable results.

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