STAY SALTY ...... means column

sour and sweet alike

Shiha Uenomori Column

from  Tokushima / Japan

Shiha Uenomori

From a brainy web writer to a physical farmer and agriculturist. He works for a farmer who owns fruit trees such as mandarin oranges and sudachi (Japanese citrus fruits) in a mid-mountainous area, harvesting and pruning them.

In the note, he also talks about fruit tree farming for those who have been influenced by Corona and are beginning to look at a career in agriculture, and for those who are interested in moving from a different industry to farming.

His hobby is taste comparison and analysis.

  • note


DAYS / Shiha Uenomori Column

sour and sweet alike

Value at the end of the season




As the shipping season for stored oranges comes to an end, one yellow container is placed in the warehouse at my workplace.

Inside is a free snack.

You can eat it during your lunch break, or take it home.

This is because the oranges are less than B-grade.


You can sell them cheaply as "B" products if they have graze marks that have dried up nicely at the time of harvest, or if they are slightly browned due to damage from red mites (also known as rust mites).

If it is too damaged and has discolored parts.

The skin is too lifted.

If they are heavily damaged by pests or plant diseases, they look unappetizing.

These are considered to have no market value.

In addition, it is easy to encounter old and "watery" ones.

In Tokushima Prefecture, when a mandarin orange tastes thin and watery, the local dialect describes it as "watery.


As I've been told, customers appreciate the process of effort, but they pay for the result.

It is a natural part of doing business that the items to be put on the store shelves should be beautiful in appearance and confident in taste.


We, on the other hand, are happy to accept oranges that are less than B-grade as valuable.

This is because they are good for rehydrating after a day of sweating from farming or when the air is dry.

Moreover, oranges kept in a warehouse with low temperature are well chilled.

They are also a good source of vitamin C.

Plus, the ones that have been damaged by red mites and have turned brown taste like nature's own eating soda juice. You'll be lucky if you find some mixed in.


Speaking of the end of the season, there is a low probability that you will see yellow sudachi (citrus fruits) at the produce market in the fall.

These yellow sudachi are also losing their market value, but some people who sell country sushi to restaurants or who want to use them at home buy them because they are cheaper than the green ones.

The advantages of yellow sudachi are its low price, soft skin that is easy to squeeze, high juice content, and mild acidity.

It is great for dressings and sushi rice.


...... so.

The green ones are hard and don't produce much juice, and it's hard to find ones that taste sweet.




I'm not sure if it's because I'm a writer, or because I'm just a writer.

These days, I feel that there are more people who are trying to sell their names and get work than those who genuinely want to write or make a living.


As for me, last year I was honored to be asked if I would like to work as an interview writer.

I could have returned to it, but I don't have the confidence to write fresh articles that are in line with the times.

I could have returned, but I don't have the confidence to write fresh, current articles.


In the past, there were professions that suddenly increased due to the influence of dramas and documentaries.

Hairdressers, lawyers, florists, comedians.

I'm sure there were many people who got the job, but couldn't stand the work and quit.

I wonder how many of them will still be working 10 years from now?

I think there will be fewer writers.

If the same situation that existed before the Corona disaster comes to pass, or if other easy and fun jobs become popular, there is a good chance that "writing" itself will become obsolete.


By the way.


By the way, farmer P. has beautiful oranges that he can sell even at the end of the season.

In fact, this is not easy to imitate.

It's easy to increase the value of a product that everyone else doesn't, and it's also easy to ship large quantities of products to fit in with everyone else's season.

But it is difficult to put out a good product when consumers have given up on the idea that you don't sell it anymore.


Value is not something to be increased, but something to be satisfied.

I want to be like that in my writing.




DAYS / Shiha Uenomori Column

sour and sweet alike

Prune your values



Let's do it together, Shiha.

No, no. I just want to watch.

Come on, let's do it.

All three of us had long ago passed the age of thirty, but the lively atmosphere was like a group of schoolgirls of the same age.

We were like a group of schoolgirls of the same age.

At Mr. P's place, where he is a farmer, we eat lunch in front of the warehouse, except in the summer when the sun is strong.
After lunch, we sat down on the concrete with what looked like a kotatsu quilt that we no longer needed.
We talk about our private life.
Discussing work schedules
Touching our phones
After dinner, we spend most of our time talking about our personal lives, our work schedules, and our smartphones.
Last year, on Saturday, December 26, the same trend was starting to happen.

......? Someone's here.

All the people in the room paid attention to the sound of footsteps.
The person who showed up was P-san's husband, who had just come back from doing his business.


He placed the new tools in front of the women.
An orange basket, a silver hook for hanging branches, and a white rope for tying up cardboard boxes.

"Oh my. Did you buy these for me?

"You said you didn't have enough.

"Yeah. You remembered, didn't you? Thank you.

After Mr. P, we thanked him.
Navel plants can grow to the size of the palm of your hand.
So the baskets were full in no time at all.
Mr. P. said that he would need two or three baskets per person, but other farmers had beaten him to it because it coincided with the mikan harvest season, and the local stores were out of stock.

"Can I make them now so I can use them later?

Mr. P asked.


The reply was a double circle.
While Mr. P's family was eating lunch together, my senior and his sister started to prepare the string, in a good mood.
I thought it would be better to leave it to those who like to make things and are good at it.
I thought it would be better to leave it to those who like to make things and are good at it, because sometimes things go more smoothly if you don't say, "I want to participate.

"Let's do it together, Shiha-san!

A senior member of the group said to me with a smile.
Her sister also invited her with a cheerful smile, "Hey, let's do it.
I said

"I smiled back and said, "No, just watching is good enough for me

I smiled back, but I couldn't avoid the unanswered push, so I received the three-piece set.

Relying on the sample, I tried to make it like this or not. But I couldn't avoid pushing without question, so I received the set of three.

When we showed each other who had the best results, the results were similar and ugly.
The three of us laughed like schoolgirls and had a great time until the afternoon harvest.
If I were to write that, readers of this column might think, "It's nice that you all get along so well.
From the beginning of last year's New Year to the beginning of the summer harvest season, I was convinced that we would never understand each other.



I remember three years ago, I was confronted with a project in a friendly competition with several of my classmates who had taken a writing course.
We were divided into teams at the request of the office, and we shared and learned from each other's interactions with the editor in charge until the delivery was completed.
It was a very good atmosphere.
Until one of the students took the silent stance of "I don't want to flirt with editors or get along with other writers," and started to handle projects appropriately.
The self-centered behavior eventually affected others, and the cohesion that had been built gradually took a strange turn and the main purpose collapsed.
I did not like the person who disrupted the circle.

From my experience as a writer, I thought that there was no need to get along with farmers as long as I could do my job.
However, although it looks like an individual game, in reality it is a collaborative effort.
When a person who wants to do a given job perfectly and a person who thinks it's okay to do a lesser job do the same work, they end up asking the other person to fit in, which gradually makes them feel uncomfortable.
It's a common story everywhere.
My seniors and I felt a huge discrepancy in our work values, and the atmosphere grew worse.


After Golden Week, I met my senior again in the summer after a break due to the effects of the Corona disaster and the rainy season.
Even though we smiled and set the tone, I think we were both resistant to working together again.

(But I want to work comfortably.)

It's okay if the values you think are right are misaligned, I tried to change my views.
We had frequent opportunities to talk about our private lives during breaks, and I understood the difficulties my seniors were facing in raising their children, and by sympathizing with their work difficulties and learning about their common hobbies, we succeeded in breaking the ice.
Since then, I feel as if a change has taken place in her, and her enthusiasm for her work has become greater than mine.

The fruit trees are called "autumn buds.

Fruit trees have yellow-green buds called "autumn buds".
They look pretty at first glance, but they are susceptible to diseases, and if they infect the fruit, the taste and appearance of the fruit will deteriorate, so they are pruned as unnecessary.
People also sometimes misunderstand that a sense of justice is beautiful when they judge and stick to the idea that "I am right and she is wrong.
But when we realize that we don't need it, we can prune it.
I may not have been able to sympathize with the behavior of my peers who disrupted the circle, but if I had tried to understand the background, I might have been able to avoid being offended.

That was a long time ago.
We can't change the past.
Instead, I am now pruning the autumn buds of my heart that have grown.
In order to live the future comfortably.



DAYS / Shiha Uenomori Column

sour and sweet alike

Have two cups of happiness a day



Coffee time in the open air.

A man with an American-style appearance and his lovely wife entertain you.

It's as if you are sitting on the terrace of a coffee shop.


This is not the usual scene during break time.


The wife is a friend of one of the farmers I've been working with.

She came with her husband to help with the harvest.

The husband is a coffee hobbyist, and he grinds and brews his own beans.

Today, he brought a canteen of coffee that he had specially blended with three different kinds of coffee and was going to serve it to us.


I can't wait to try it and see what it tastes like.

With so many happy faces lined up in front of me.

......1 was the only one who tried not to show his confusion.


I like cold iced coffee from convenience stores like a fool.

On the other hand, I am not a fan of hot coffee.

When I was in high school, I was served black coffee at my part-time job, which I was not used to drinking at all, and it caused serious damage to my stomach.

After that, I couldn't like hot coffee, even if it was mixed with milk and sugar.


(I'll hold out for today. Everyone else drinks it, but if I refuse, I'll become an airheaded alien.


Paper cups were being handed to me one after another.

It was my turn to drink.

It's black.


We have milk and sugar.


I was relieved to hear the wife's gentle voice.

I tore the stick of paper and put in the sugar grains.

Next came a mixture of brown and white, almost black, which changed to light brown when I turned the wooden muddler.

I put my nose to the paper cup.

It's the first time I've smelled something that doesn't have a uniform scent.


(It's fun even before I drink it. Amazing.


In my mouth, the sweetness of the sugar and the vegetable oily creep deceive me with their weird smoothness.

However, the original flavor of the bean was not completely destroyed.




After that, during the lunch break, he said, "We still have some. Would you like another cup?" His wife suggested, and we gratefully accepted.

There was entertainment here.

We decided to sing together.

The husband picked up a folk guitar brought by the farmer's sister, and the wife opened the pages to show the sheet music.

The two of them smile at each other, their expressions relaxed, and I feel a sense of peace.


"Beside you waiting for the train, I am...


I sing "Nagori Yuki" by Iruka in a shy whisper under the cold weather.

Occasionally, I would sing too fast to keep up with the music, and the musicians would hurry their hand movements to match.

When the performance was over, everyone applauded.

It was a wonderful time.


As I sipped my coffee, which had grown lukewarm in the winter temperature, I thought happily, "Long live agriculture.

Long live agriculture.


DAYS / Shiha Uenomori Column

sour and sweet alike

Touching Living Things


You don't like the cool, crisp air and hiding deep in the thicket, or

There is a friend who has not been seen since the second half of November.

Mr. "Dragonfly".

He is a winner, famous for his good omen.

When I put my hand out in front of him, he perches on my finger and is very charming.

Some of them do not perch on my finger but fly around as if they were enclosing a body, while others

There are also strong men (laughs) who rush forward with authority and try to stick to your jacket.

Oh, don't get me wrong, I haven't always liked bugs.

I didn't always like bugs.

When I was 20 years old, I came across a blog by a therapist who has a store in Jiyugaoka, Tokyo.

Looking at a photo image of a dragonfly perched on a finger

I want to do it! I want to do it! That was the starting point.

We were able to achieve this last year, and it took us 14 years.

Until then, whenever I saw a dragonfly, I experimented relentlessly to see if it would land on my finger.

It didn't go well, and I thought, "I guess it's impossible.

Unlike dogs and cats, they are creatures that can't see the expression of joy, anger, and sorrow," I decided and gave up.

Getting along with them is just a dream come true.

Last fall, before working at a tangerine farmer, I got a call from my paternal grandfather's parents' house and went to harvest the yucoup.

As the owners were an elderly couple, the field was poorly managed and a sea of tall weeds.

Using a small sickle, we decided to make a path for people to walk on.

Although it was my job as well as my helper, I felt sorry for the fact that the weeds were alive and well.

I mow and then crap and pull it out, apologizing to myself.

I didn't want to get stung when I had to walk past the bees buzzing around for the nectar.

It's like saying to someone, "I'm sorry to bother you, but I have to let you through.


For years, I understood in my head that insects and plants are living things on earth.

But I hadn't reached the understanding that they were individuals, and I hadn't reached the point of contact.

If you're a person, you have a different face, you have a different heart.

In the case of creatures, including dragonflies, they were lumped together.


The turning point was two perceptions.

The perception that they are individuals with dignity.

The perception that both insects and plants were subjects when taking pictures during harvest breaks.

When I walked around my home, I saw each one as a separate entity, even if there were three of them flying around.


Then... a dragonfly latched onto my finger.

I was elated, feeling like a child at school again.

By the way, the dragonflies I come across at work now seem to be pissing me off and won't stop at all (laughs).

There is a land pattern, as well as a personality, a bug pattern.



When I look back on the days when I was working solely at home writing articles

For little creatures that have no facial expression, no words, no voice

What I tended to understand in my head, after all this time, I felt that way as I typed the column.

Playing with the individual is a great way to learn beyond the senses, as you can only learn by touching and holding things in your hands.

If you're up for the challenge, you should try it.

I don't recommend the seahawk spider and tick at .......




DAYS / Shiha Uenomori Column

sour and sweet alike

45 degree landscape


If you move a light car, the engine will cry.

If it's a new car, people cry a lot (laughs).

The day after a rainy day, the tires slip on wet grass and trees, and sometimes the car stops in the middle of the road and can't get up.

Such steep, 45-degree slopes are my route to work.

If I make a big mistake in operating the steering wheel, the car will be thumping and thumping.

There is a guardrail at one spot just to make sure the car doesn't turn into a diaper bag.

Probably less than 3 meters in length .......

Going to work by car is nerve-wracking.


Walking to work, on the other hand, is very easy.

I like it because there is a lot to discover.

For example.


October 2020.

On this day, the day after we were hit by a strong wind, I found chestnuts on the road.

I sat down in the middle of the road and took a closer look.

Most likely, the chestnuts had been picked up by humans with their shoes on, or eaten by wild animals such as weasels and raccoons.

Chestnuts don't walk away on their own.

Regardless of who did this, the fact that the chestnuts are lined up as if they were dropped by Gretel, a character in a picture book, is very strange and funny.


It also makes me feel good when I walk in front of the bamboo forest.

A chorus.

A dead and fallen bamboos were caught between the pale blue live bamboos.

They sway and collide with each other as the wind blows through them, and they sing with a quiet clattering sound.



As you keep walking, you notice.

I look up and see an unknown tree with its branches and leaves making a roof.


It's a path I take every time I work in this mountain, but I only pay attention to it when I'm outside the car.

I guess my five senses tend to get dulled when I'm inside the car.




The fun discoveries are still to come.

However, depending on how you perceive it,

it may seem like an outrageous story.


There is a weed that looks just like a giant leaf,

which has been called 'Hijyuu leaf' by locals since long ago,

growing on the road to work.

'Hyuji' is a black caterpillar.

They are supposed to be where the leaves are,

but I wonder where they have gone, leaving signs of a full meal (holes).

They may have been blown away by a strong wind,

or turned into food for the birds, but we can't find them.


It's a good thing they're not there,

because the leaves of the hijiki have grown too vigorously in a blah blah blah blah blah.

Every time I go to work in my car, I scrape the doors and windows.

Even if I try to pull it out, it's massive .......

Are you guys working together going to leave it until it dies?

I asked during my break.


'If you were driving, would you get scraped by the leaves of the hijab?'


The farmer and the older man laugh.


I wonder who will be the first to run out of patience and reap. It's a contest of patience.


The sensors are working fine,so I wouldn't worry about that just yet.


I laughed at the positive, cheerful responses from both of them, which were interesting.

In the end,

the first people to go numb were either those who came to do construction work nearby

or those who had a field next to the road.

We were unsuccessful (laughs).



Writing about the 45-degree scenery reminds me of how much I enjoyed discovering fun and interesting things when I was a writer.

The truth is that it's just a matter of what I'm doing and where I'm doing it,

and it's up to me to decide how I feel about the landscape.


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