WHAT I KNOW ABOUT HER HANDS

12-1-18

They raised seven children, starting at age 19. Some not her own, some delivered on her own.

 

They like to cheers with a glass of soju, especially the San brand. They motion at empty glasses around the table, to be filled and cheers’d again.

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They caress her grandchildren’s faces to give them smooches before they head out.

It looks like a faire la bise, but it feels so much warmer than a casual goodbye greeting.

 

They slap my bare knees when I’m wearing destroyed denim, asking why I paid for half-ripped jeans. It’s style, of course, but it really did make me wonder why.

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They are often massaging her cramped legs, thin enough to be grasped entirely within the palm of one hand.

 

They recently started exercising with a green hand grip she brought back from a nursing home in Korea.

They are quite slender, with long and lean fingers.

Her rings are too loose to fit them now, so she keeps them stowed in boxes.

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They twirl when she dances. Once, she was on the local Korean news because she danced so well. It really wouldn’t be too much to say she’s a celebrity.

 

You can see their 90 years of finesse in them– in the way she cooks, cuts kimchi, peels chestnuts.

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She almost threw her phone to the ground one day, upset and flustered that it wasn’t working right. She had switched from a flip to smartphone; touch screens are honestly too sensitive for the tenacious hands of a 1920s woman. A couple minutes later, she was throwing up peace signs over the phone, waving with smiles and laughs. FaceTime with her son & granddaughter.

Her hands are so wildly expressive.

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These are her hands.

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And this is her.

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Model — SO JE PAK

Stylist — JINNAH PAK

Photographer — STEPHEN LEE