Tuesday, January 20, 2009

LAX, First Thing In The Morning

I have four uncles on my mother's side of the family: one in-law (my mother's only sister's husband) and three that are my mother's brothers (one older, two younger than Mom).

The eldest of my mom's siblings, Kim Kwang-Soon (김광순), arrived in L.A. this morning. He's going to be here for about a month while he's on vacation (he's a professor at Jeonju University (전주대학교) in the music department- an article about his work (in Korean) with a picture of him).

My mom suggested that we both go to LAX in separate cars, so I can just go straight to work from the airport. I agreed ... a little hesitantly ... because his flight was scheduled to land at 7:30 a.m. I am not a morning person at all, and the prospect of waking up at 6:00 was dreadful. But I haven't seen my uncle in years (15 years!) so I agreed to leave the house at that ungodly hour and sit in traffic.

The traffic was seriously terrible. There's no traffic like L.A. traffic. It's maybe 25 miles from my house to the airport, which means, logically, that it should not take an entire hour to get there. Something that did make me laugh is the fact that my mom and I drive the exact same car (hers is 2004, mine is 2005) in the same exact color. We were a duo of white Saturn Vues chugging along on the freeway (105, I hate you).

While sitting in mind-melting traffic, I took this picture:

The clouds were so odd. Whenever I see things like that in nature, it occurs to me that if we (as an industry) created VFX images that looked exactly like this, people would think it was totally fake.

Nature creates pictures that look much faker than we do.

A picture right as I was taking the Sepulveda exit off the 105, with the giant L A X. I don't understand the point of the metal letters ... don't we all know we're at LAX?

(By the way, why do Blackberry phones take such dim photos? This is my second Blackberry, and they have not fixed the strange lighting issue. The photos taken at night with the flash are actually better than daytime photos. Odd.)

It was great to see my uncle. We had coffee (Americano for the siblings, cafe latte for me) and chatted. I have to admit, it's awkward to see family that you haven't seen in forever. I love my uncle, really, but I don't know him anymore. I imagine this is the feeling I'll have at my high school reunion, where I recognize people but I won't really know anything about them anymore (reunion is next year. Where does the time go??).

With a little trepidation and a lot of excitement, I anticipate the coming month, living with an uncle I haven't seen in 15 years.