Monday, March 8, 2010

Volcanic Onion Rings, Lottery, and Life in a Japanese Restaurant

Okay, now this actually happened early in March five years ago. Going through my archives brought back memories, which led to a new piece of art as well, as you will see. Went to a Japanese restaurant and ordered a delicious filet mignon steak grilled up on the hibachi. Was amazed to see the chef create a volcano of onion rings, complete with smoke and flames rising with a steaming sizzle upwards across the restaurant.

The heat from the rising fire was so intense I thought my camera would melt. It sort of jumped around in my hands trying to focus on the light.

A wisp of hibachi smoke in jade green curled its way through the air, rich with the smell of delicious cooking. While this photo was taken years ago, I just came up with this particular rendering of it days ago. In reality, the atmosphere was smoky gray.

Now when you have hibachi cooking in a Japanese restaurant, they like to seat large groups at each table. Singles like me they simply add to an already-formed group of people.

The unknown man next to me was friendly so we struck up a conversation. Never would have guessed, but he was a lottery winner ... of quite a large sum of money. Told me he'd been in a lottery pool of nine people at work and had split the money. Out of the nine, only one had retired from his job to live off his winnings. The other eight kept the normal rhythm of their day jobs and quietly continued going about their regular daily lives.

It might have been that everyone seated around the hibachi grill with me was a lottery winner or somehow connected except for me. That said, the fiery feast with flames leaping up was what attracted the most attention on the surface, and everyone liked it that way. To merely enjoy the simple things of life.


Mami said...

OH FIRE!!Amaging!!
HIbachi grill? I am a japanese but somehow i dont know that! Robata cooking or hichirin cooking I know. Wow!! is that so fired up?
Wow!! I need to check out right now!
Anyway did you enjoy japanese food?

Bren said...

These are amazing, candid shots in and of themselves, but I love the final rendering! It has the feel of a watercolour abstract, delicious. Enjoyed hearing the story around these photos, inspiration comes from living life doesn't it.

I'm intrigued by how you 'fell' into photography, someday I'd love to hear the full story.

mariamarooska said...

Love the jade green smoke!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful image and great story!! Amazing what you do with your photographs- they become art. Wonderful!

Anonymous said...


Say It In Color said...

Hi...You left a sweet comment on my blog....thanks so much!!! My daughter lives in Ohio, so I would be interested in your favorite B&B and where ?Hocking Hills email is love your very beautiful!!! Blogging has been the best ever experience!!! Look forward to checking back!!

Mariel said...

great pics of that habachi fire!!

Debbie said...

your pictures are amazing! thank you for visiting my blog and your sweet comment.

Bren said...

"working on an abstract with the same colors and a similar theme" I'm intrigued, can't wait to see what you've been working on :-)

CountryDreaming said...

Mami: Maybe "hibachi" is a Japanese-American invention? It's a great way to cook a steak dinner. The food was excellent ... totemo oishii deshita! :-)

Bren: That watercolor look is only one version. There's another in royal blue, and still another in flourescent neon shades. This watercolor look best suits the mood of the restaurant experience. ... And I'll have to keep you posted on the other geological abstract, my friend!

mariamarooska, PAMO, Sunshine and Baba, Mariel and Debbie: Thank you very much, appreciate your kind comments!

Say It In Color: Your wish is my command ... the e-mail has been sent. Happy to help.