Iam an urban construction. Distant to me is the world of the pastoral, the sight of stars in the night sky. No, these sights are no longer in my view. The natural, the call of birds, has been replaced with the sound of sirens and car horns. I cannot remember the last time I felt I was in nature. Yes, I am a full-time resident of the concrete jungle.
I cannot imagine where some food comes from. I am not talking about my usual diet of 7-Eleven selections, Pop Tarts and glazed doughnuts. I have watched the TV show How it's Made, so I understand that processed food is made in large vats and massive metal machines churn out products, additives and preservatives popping out of chutes and tubes faster than you can comprehend.
Yes, that all makes perfect sense. There is no disconnection in my mind from my mouth to the artificial assembly line process where my ever-loving snacks are born. And it all happens faster than a turnstile in a Hong Kong subway during rush hour.
The world has a lot of people; in turn, a lot of food is made very fast. I get this on one level. I see freight trucks filled with Dr. Pepper (my favourite beverage) move across this vast country. Yes, I have accepted that food is created in a mechanical, automated process and this now makes perfect sense to me.
But as I sit at a restaurant - a rare occurrence in this impoverished student's life - eating a farm-fresh organic salad, I feel slightly confused. These things that grow in the ground and are individually plucked from the Earth with care confuse me. Why?
Of course, I know farming is a massive industry worldwide and I know machines are employed in the acquisition of much of the produced stocked at the local chain supermarket. I understand that genetic modification is quite common and this is why produce now lasts so long and looks so unrealistically good.
But as I sit and look at this beautiful, crisp romaine lettuce, there is something so fragile about it. It seems so temperamental and individual, with its unique structure. Each individual piece is unlike any other piece, much unlike the bag of M&M's in my pocket, each one indistinguishable from the other.
No moulds were used in the production of my apple. I know it may sound silly but I find myself thinking, "How did this happen?"
In my world, it seems, everything I handle on a daily basis was designed, engineered and produced in factories. So I stop now and think about the wonder of an apple. And yes, I am a little confused. Whether or not you believe that an apple was designed by an all-mighty creator or is just a consequence of the evolution of all living things, you cannot deny that it is simply mind-boggling how this process has remained intact.
Unlike me, this apple at its core is untouched by progress and unaffected by the electronic world, which humans inhabit.
Naomi Yorke is a Port Coquitlam student who lived in Shanghai, China for four years, writing about her experiences twice a month for The Tri-City News. She now lives in Chicago, where she's attending art school, and continues her column.