Friday, May 8, 2009

And now, the people of Uruguay get their due

Worry not, my lovelies, the blabla collection is still on, and the customs/security stories are a-building. I'm thrilled to see so many of you weighing in, and still laughing about the serrated knife (check the comments on the first post). Also thinking about how the combination of charges for checked luggage on domestic flights coupled with the 3 oz liquids rule is going to wreak havoc on my hair during the month I'm in the states this coming northern summer. Apologies in advance to people who've offered to host me. I will be stealing shampoo and conditioner. Except from my bookbinding friend who lives on/in (?) intentional community, and I'm willing to bet uses all natural products. But hey! baby goats.

Earlier this week I was touting Uruguay in general and Montevideo in particular as places to go, not the least of which because they're horribly photogenic. But the buildings are only part of the story. Despite my best attempts to get truly candid (yet decent) shots of Uruguayans or their Argentine neighbors hugging their termos and mates and sucking down this caffeinated concoction, these are not among the noteworthy photos.

So you'll just have to settle for some others. A photographer friend of mine describes my snappity habit as documentarian in nature. Worse things have been said about someone's photography, and those things may also be being said about what I take. But lalalalala, I can't hear you. PlanetNomad also makes her case for not taking pictures of people in an exploitative way, and I think she's totally right, and hope I never do.

And so I present some candid shots I forced my mother to wait through me taking (though not for very long, because one must, at all costs, keep moving). Clearly these are not as stellar as the old man and the river photo I posted a few days ago, but like the brownies I recently made for Mr. Stilllife that were only partially burnt, they still give you something to chew on. I hope you find them tasty.

lolos/teenagers
teenagers sitting by the river in Colonia. Notice the oblong mate purse hanging from the wall and the thermos by one of the kids' feet. Mate drinkers, caught in a time out.

hermanas
These sisters sat down waiting for their mom to come along with their little brother in his stroller. I love the way the girl with the cookie in her hand is eyeing the other one defiantly, with a don't-even-think-about-it look on her face.

candied peanuts
as you can see, this man is terribly concerned about the bottom line. Also, candied peanuts in Chile are sold from a different-looking cart, and it doesn't have a little put-put chimney on the top. I wonder if Tio Semilla (Uncle Seed, which sounds much less weird in Spanish, I promise), my corner peanut, guy wishes he had such a chimney. Inhaling the burnt sugar smell must get old.

And here begin what I like to call the grey-hair portraits. I am in love with taking pictures of older people. Maybe because they tend to be self-confident, or just because I'm looking forward to getting to be one, in that when-I'm-an-old-woman-I-shall-wear-purple kind of way.

ten fe en dios / have faith in God
this woman stands in her balcony with a windowbox of garishly-colored silk flowers, a sign above her head says "ten fe en dios" (have faith in God). The stream of light is just, as we say, la guinda en la torta (the icing on the cake).

tombola y la vecina/lotto and the neighbor lady
with this one, my mother asked, "do people ever get angry at you for taking their picture?" And I said, "I don't think they notice." Do you think this woman would mind? I think she's stunning. And I love her looking in what appears to be her change purse as she passes a storefront specializing in lottery tickets.

waiting
This gent's weathered hands, as well as the pose they are in make the photo for me. The background colors don't hurt either.

ships passing
I'll leave you with this one to comment on yourselves, though if you click back to my flickr page, you'll see what I think it should be called.

And although I believe there are universals in life, how much people love their children and dislike being hungry, appreciate a sip of water when they're thirsty and love to get mail, I also love how different people can look. These (for the most part) are the people of Uruguay. Nowhere else. And not Chile, by a long shot (no pun intended).

3 comments:

Cindy H said...

Really loved your pictures...
Searched on Twitter for Uruguay, and there you were in English..whew...
Just got back from Buenos Aires, and taking a day trip to Colonia, Uruguay. What a change between city and beautiful town. I loved it all!
Thanks..
Cindy H
Hard Brown Sugar

Margaret said...

You've definitely got the eye! And what gorgeous light! Thanks for the view!

Still Life in South America said...

Love those photos, especially the little girls and the man with the sky blue background.

Your brownies brought me close to nirvana today. They were that good!