Tag Archive | life

How do you measure a year: 2018 – My TOP 18 achievements, life lessons, and other pot pourri.

“Five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred minutes – how do you measure,
measure a year?”

2018 – My TOP 18 achievements, life lessons, and other pot pourri.

1. I ran a full marathon. That’s right, all 42.195km of it. Tokyo Marathon – check.

2. I swam a fricking channel with a team (both swimmers and crew) of amazing people. It took us 18.5 hours to swim 42km from Honshu to Hokkaido (ie the Tsugaru channel). In 18-21 degree water. That’s teamwork, grit and insanity right there.

3. I took up hiking. Hiking for me is therapeutic and cathartic. I hiked lots this year. (It’s cheaper than therapy).

4. I like to try and visit one new country a year. This year I went to Belgium – the home of waffles, fries, beer and chocolate – a gastronomad’s paradise. No regrets at all going to Belgium, although the waistline begs to differ.

5. I swam over 300km in total this year. A lot. But not quite enough at the same time.

6. Tiger Balm patches are the bomb.

7. KT Tape is magic duct tape for the body.

8. Growth (success) and comfort cannot co-exist. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable (this means running with blisters, swimming in 17 degree water, taking cold baths, working overtime, making sacrifices, saving money etc etc).

9. I did a solo trek of the Kumano Kodo trail. One of my most memorable experiences this year. Hiking is good for the soul.

10. I changed jobs this year. Every time I change jobs, I try not to think of it as “work” but rather “you’re getting paid to learn every day”. This is a mindset which has helped me get through working life in Tokyo.

11. I scored a reservation at Narisawa – a 3 star Michelin restaurant in Tokyo. Life goals. Great food. Great company.

12. Discovered the joy and simplicity of savoury porridge. Now I can eat porridge for breakfast AND dinner. Cook your oatmeal in a simple broth, add bacon, mushrooms etc. Voila! Savoury porridge. Game changer for the lazy cook.

13. In 2018, I went to the dentist. Last time I visited a dentist was 6 years ago (gasp!). Don’t judge me. Also don’t hate me. I have good teeth. Never had a cavity, filling or braces in my life.

14. You should back up your laptop/computer. You never know when it might die. (Don’t learn this the hard way).

15. Sleep is awesome. It’s also underrated.

16. Elastic pants/shorts are your friend.

17. Everyone should own a thermos and a reuseable drink bottle. This year I made a conscious decision to drastically reduce PET bottle and single use plastic usage. Say no to straws. And refuse plastic bags where possible.

18. You’re stronger than you think. Keep on keeping on.

2018 – you were EPIC. Thanks everyone for sharing in the journey.

I don’t expect 2019 to be as eventful and epic as this year was, but one can always hope. (Challenge accepted).


These lyrics from the musical “Rent” are appropriate.
Song: Seasons of Love

Five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred minutes
Five hundred twenty five thousand moments so dear
Five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred minutes
How do you measure, measure a year?

In daylights, in sunsets,
In midnights, in cups of coffee?
In inches, in miles,
In laughter, in strife?

In five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred minutes,
How do you measure a year in the life?

How about love?
How about love?
How about love?
Measure in love.
Seasons of love,
Seasons of love.

Five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred minutes,
Five hundred twenty five thousand journeys to plan,
Five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred minutes,
How do you measure the life of a woman or a man?

In truth that she learned,
Or in times that he cried?
In the bridges he burned,
Or the way that she died?

It’s time now, to sing out,
Though the story never ends.
Let’s celebrate, remember a year,
In the life of friends.

Remember the love, (Oh you got to, you got to remember the love)
Remember the love, (You know that love is a gift from up above)
Remember the love, (Share love, give love, spread love)
Measure in love, (Measure, measure your life in love)
Seasons of love,
Seasons of love (Measure your life, measure your life in love).

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2014: 12 months, 12 challenges

One month down. Another 11 to go.

This year, I thought I’d set myself 12 challenges or goals/achievements/stuff I want to do, one for each month.

Here’s what I’ve come up with so far (subject to change):

January – Polar Bear dip. DONE
February – Get a haircut. DONE
March – Try as many new recipes as possible in the month (submitted by Jess), do the Color Run
April – Photo Project – complete as many photo projects as possible from the 52 Photo Project Book (submitted by Em)
May – Visit a new country (ticket is booked!)
June – 8km island crossing Guam open water swim (airfare is booked)
July – 10km ows race, Paddle mix ows race, sit JLPT exam – level N1
August – Tsugaru Channel Relay swim crossing (August or September)???
September – Murakami triathlon???
October – 15km ows race????
November – Full marathon run???
December – Sit the JLPT exam – Level N1 (aim to pass)

I need a challenge for February!!!
Send me your challenge proposals!

2014: New year, New Word

A little belated, but here goes anyway.

But first off, a brief recap of last year. My word for 2013 was “new”, and true to word, it was filled with “new” things.
I started a new job at a new company. Lots of new things to learn, new work colleagues etc. It was a trying year to say the least. They say if you find a job you love, you’ll never work a day in your life. It feels like as if I am going to be working forever. Work has its pros and cons. Am surprised that I survived the year. Just another 12 months to go.
One day at a time.

Along with a new job, I also got a new apartment. After months and moths of apartment hunting, I also moved apartments to accompany the new job change. Moved to a new neighbourhood in Tokyo. Have only been there for about 3-4 months now, but I really like my new apartment and neighbourhood. Apartment is a lot bigger (2LDK), walking distance to a swimming pool. I swim train a lot these days. I’ve averaging 10-12km a week. I’ve also dusted off the old road bike and trying to take up cycling. Where I live is perfect for jogging and cycling. I no longer need gym membership, because I’m able to swim, cycle and jog to my heart’s content.

There was also new friendships and disappointments.

Unfortunately, last year I didn’t do any big overseas trip which I like to do every year. I did a short mini break to Seoul, and 3 trips back to Sydney (not for leisure). But on the upside, I did accomplish something which I had been procastinating doing for a long time, so I’m glad that’s behind me as well. But I’ve done some domestic travel instead.

Also, ran into a little bit of trouble towards the end of the year which put a dampener on things. Let’s just say it involved police and put a little dent on my wallet. But things are all good now.

Trying to start off 2014 fresh.
So the new word for the year is “FOCUS”.
I need to focus on me a bit this year. Focus on my future, focus on my happiness. Last year was about doing things that needed to be done, and not necessarily for the joy of it. But this year, will be about doing things I enjoy and want to do. A large part of that focus is going to be on fitness. I have a handful of physical challenges I want to do this year, mostly around swimming. I am hoping to do a few marathon swims. That means a whopping 10km! So yep, this is going to take a lot of training, motivation and focus.

I’ve also decided to set myself 12 challenges, one for each month. 12 months. 12 challenges. The list is still a kind of work in progress.

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/8rwR0bCMuVln2bn8O67t-uEsfyARU4ej4d_Dz8cpHxo?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-LjrJljPCQqQ/Us9nMxLILkI/AAAAAAACeL0/hJaedF2xxd4/s800/focus.jpg&#8221; height=”192″ width=”262″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/January102014?authuser=0&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>January 10, 2014</a></td></tr></table>

2014: Day One

Happy New Year!
May 2014 be a good one for you. Good lord, I need it to be.
2013 was a shocker of a year (hence the lack of posts over the last few months. You wouldn’t believe the lousy times I went through). Here’s hoping this year is going to be a lot better.

Anyway, what better way to see in the new year than a New Year’s Day Polar Bear Swim! You could say it was a “cool” way to see in the new year. Quite literally. It was freezing.

More like a polar bear dip for me though. Air temp was about 10 degrees. Water temp about 16 degrees and plunge into the water we did. Mind you, I was sporting a severe hangover from the previous night’s New Year’s Eve festivities in Roppongi. Probably hit bed around 3am and had to be up at 8am to make the trek to Hayama Beach in Kanagawa prefecture. I was throwing up on the 1.5 hr train ride down there. Not a pretty sight.

A couple of trains and a bus ride later and a few more throw ups along the way, we made it to the beach.

Crazy windy and freezing. And quite the swell. The waves were rough.

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Ax7KyGH821c6npappSAvTNEAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-4XfAM_8cM8s/UsUAke5g6ZI/AAAAAAACdFo/rX2r9UBblbA/s640/IMG_6414.JPG&#8221; height=”480″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/ojxAumCfeh3Anp7J8EvW59EAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-lcYUpHaPhb8/UsUAkTPaLXI/AAAAAAACdFk/0ir-5p7PS38/s640/IMG_6412.JPG&#8221; height=”480″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/JHPDiSmW-whD3jQrEDh8z9EAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-1p99TCiZoy0/UsUAkdSygXI/AAAAAAACdFc/j5r__K7hMH4/s640/IMG_6413.JPG&#8221; height=”480″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

A few of us braved the cold temps, <em>sans</em> wetsuits, of course! The boys got in:

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/XeQiPuTQHF0BwdkWUx1cNtEAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-po_mTGuaveY/UsUAvxwZSOI/AAAAAAACdIA/tlIwy9kzOCo/s640/RIMG0702.JPG&#8221; height=”480″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/4VugJRsKO5PiprjMzgnsrtEAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-9HJnX_qnQ_U/UsUAw8lsiZI/AAAAAAACdIQ/RemnG9Fgmwo/s640/RIMG0705.JPG&#8221; height=”480″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

Meanwhile, at the water’s edge….(I’m the one in the pink cap):

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/EryuDmFIBPXBEUJ5r_ztfNEAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-1xkySEvKBtg/Usj34XlHG9I/AAAAAAACd9k/TaLjPKOHmjw/s640/polar.jpg&#8221; height=”427″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

Am still not convinced about going in:

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/gWKz2OOjSW7EQHl_ONS8UtEAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-XnbpBZRp6vg/Usj2bm8LUsI/AAAAAAACd9A/Ch5VhJGwCHI/s640/dip.jpg&#8221; height=”626″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

C’mon in the water’s lovely.

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Mv7N_7Hv1leJX92C3fri9dEAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-EQDxy6kxkSU/UsUAmw2BS3I/AAAAAAACdGc/8BAAAkXSDRk/s640/IMG_6420.JPG&#8221; height=”480″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;authkey=Gv1sRgCObBn4fm9fei6QE&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

I finally muster the strength to take the plunge. Might help rid the hangover, me thinks:

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Mie8jtnd7tqFqhp10mbRJNEAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-s98EZkfeGjA/Usj2eTohRZI/AAAAAAACd9I/agPM4ViAZTw/s400/plunge.jpg&#8221; height=”400″ width=”313″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;authkey=Gv1sRgCObBn4fm9fei6QE&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

Oh holy crap it’s cold!
I couldn’t breathe. I cannot breathe.
I had to get out of the water. Because I couldn’t get in proper breaths, I had to get out of the water. Know your boundaries.
Survived the polar bear dip, but not the swim sadly.
My body did not take kindly to the water especially in the state I was in.

The others did well, and we’re in the water swimming away for at least another 20-30 minutes.

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Vc_PL5I8D_LwzlyVMeMlq9EAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-WdzlVbsVmYI/UsUAmZryNkI/AAAAAAACdGM/GW4Jzt69t90/s640/IMG_6418.JPG&#8221; height=”480″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/V_AQgpKNfnCjQ18j_x_W7dEAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-uvuIXdhUNk4/UsUAlal2YUI/AAAAAAACdF4/ludcYkXFsBw/s640/IMG_6415.JPG&#8221; height=”480″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;authkey=Gv1sRgCObBn4fm9fei6QE&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Hxut6mlTye9itlz_4BNVMNEAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-71GXI8iLeHs/UsUAloZFOXI/AAAAAAACdF8/6qQkPLSqZbo/s640/IMG_6416.JPG&#8221; height=”480″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;authkey=Gv1sRgCObBn4fm9fei6QE&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/6ZuffkCVJ8FnaPYU5vo36NEAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-HbjRF6i3EIk/UsUAmG-kLkI/AAAAAAACdGE/dL0BBFLJTZo/s640/IMG_6417.JPG&#8221; height=”480″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;authkey=Gv1sRgCObBn4fm9fei6QE&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

Cold, cold, cold:

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/-KFnu2DRSc7A0zGgsXECMtEAJXZdkKLe2njuguxH8bw?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-9KFJqL_c4sE/UsUAnksYEdI/AAAAAAACdGg/_KWXjzrYU44/s640/IMG_6421.JPG&#8221; height=”480″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/116032719585350311356/PolarBearDip?authuser=0&amp;authkey=Gv1sRgCObBn4fm9fei6QE&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>Polar Bear Dip</a></td></tr></table>

It then took a few hours to get warmed back again. But a breakfast of pancakes, soup and muffins and cups of tea helped. My head and liver still not in good shape though.

Was a very cool thing to do though on New Year’s Day. I’m glad I did it, even though my body didn’t really hold up to the challenge. Still, I went in and took the plunge.

Here’s to a swimmingly hopeful new year!

Burn progress pics

It’s been just shy of two weeks since my burn accident.
I’m surprised with how fast my skin has been healing. That’s not to say that the scars are going to fade anytime soon. I think I’m going to have scars for a few months.

I burnt myself on June 12, and a week later this is what my arm looked like: I had no skin:

From Burn progress

It was just red raw – and it hurt. Super sensitive to movement and especially painful to get it wet. Made showering very difficult.

From Burn progress

The area around the burn felt like it had been badly bruised.

This is how my thigh looked, one week after the burn incident:

From Burn progress

And this is what it looked like with cream applied liberally to it:

From Burn progress

I’ve only had to go to the hospital once in the last week. I have to go back again sometime this week for another check up.
I’ve been using prescribed creams. I’m on my third different cream now.

The skin on my arm is healing really well. It’s looking less raw and I can fully immerse it in water.
This was about 3 days ago:

From Burn progress
From Burn progress

And this is how it looked about 30 minutes ago (today):
It now has skin!

From Burn progress
From Burn progress

And this is how my thigh looks today:

From Burn progress
From Burn progress

Hope the scars will fade eventually. Pretty unsightly.

If you’re going to burn yourself though, make sure you do it at work. Workers Comp all the way. I haven’t had to pay a single yen for half a dozen hospital visits, medical treatment and prescription creams etc. It has been surprisingly easy to do consider I had to fill in the forms all in Japanese (my written Japanese is worse than a 3 year old) and do all the hospital visits on my own.

Hopefully will be back swimming soon. I haven’t been able to hit the pool for the last two weeks whilst my body has been trying to repair new skin.

Burn, baby, burn

Burn, baby, burn.
And burn I did.
Had quite the dramatic and traumatic experience this week.
One minute life is all good and dandy, the next minute you’re in the emergency room at the hospital.

Wednesday afternoon at about 5.05-5.10pm, I was at work and was just sitting down to a nice cup of tea,as you do, when all of a sudden before I knew it, I was wearing the tea.
I had 100 degree scalding boiling hot water on me. The initial shock made by jump up from my seat. My initial realization was that I was wet, and then it dawned on me that I was also burnt. The water temperature was literally and actually 100 degrees – no hyperbole. We have these electric pots at work which display the water temp. The temp is usually set to 100 degrees. (Although I’ve noticed in the last 2 days since the accident that the temp. has been set at 90 degrees). The water is so hot that you can’t hold the paper cup, and you have to use two paper cups. Also, the water should not be that hot, because as most tea connisseurs would know, you shouldn’t use boiling water for tea and I’ve noticed that the tea I have at work is less than perfect because it’s always too hot. Let me tell you, there is MASSIVE difference between 80 degree water and 100 degree water especially when it’s all over your body.

The hot water had poured onto my left arm and my lap (as I was sitting in a chair, and the cup of boiling water had been knocked into my lap and thighs).
My first thought was first aid and to get out of these pants which were saturated with boiling water and clinging to my legs.
I ran to the HR dept and said I need ice and pants. Get me a change of clothes. I was in dire need of stripping out of my clothes.

They took into my the rest bay/bed area (which I didn’t even know our office had one). I took off my pants, whimpered in pain until ice was brought to me. I was basically burning alive, with no relief whatsoever.
I needed a change of pants. They brought me change of pants – a pair of gym pants. I swear they were a kids size. It was goddamn ridiculous. I was never going to get into them.
I semi squeezed into them, but they were so frickin tight that it made my burnt legs worse to have such tight fabric clinging to my skin.
It was like a comedy of errors, except not so funny. It was a choice of wearing pants that were 5 times too small for me, or put back on my saturated boiling water pants. The wet boiling pants it was then.
Meanwhile, the skin on my arm was shredding off me.

This is how my arm looked immediately after the boiling water made contact with my skin:

From Burn, baby, burn

This is what it looked like the next day:

From Burn, baby, burn

I felt like I was dying. I had been scalded by boiling hot water to half my body. My left arm and both legs.
I needed a hospital.

One of the ladies at work got in a taxi with me and took me to the nearest hospital which thankfully is only five minutes away.
We got to emergency and basically waited for 2 hours to be attended to. Meanwhile, I am crying and slowing dying. I am sitting on a chair in the waiting room of the hospital, with skin peeling from my arm, still in my wet boiling pants.
Thankfully, I am given more ice. Yes, just ply with me ice. Bucket loads of ice. I need to numb the pain stat. The pain was so freaking excruciating.
Still no one attended to me. Was feeling mighty angry and neglected.

Waiting with bags of ice in my lap:

From Burn, baby, burn

Finally after a 2 hour wait, I am taken to a little cubicle in the emergency room, where I can finally get out of my pants. They give me a nightgown robe. Give me more ice, more ice, more ice. Soo much pain. Get me morphine whilst you’re at it! Stat!
They took my temperature, blood pressure etc, and hooked me up one of those heart rate monitors thingies taped to my finger.
The hospital I was at, is actually a university hospital so it was full of med student interns. Seriously, I felt like I had walked onto the set of Scrubs.
I had an audience of 5 students observing me and then questioning me. Geez. Treatment now. Questions later. Get your priorities right. So basically had to answer a bunch of questions through tears and whimpering.

Basically, there wasn’t a lot they could do for me, as their priority is just primary care. Ice, ice and cooling down the burns. I basically just had to sit through the pain.
I was eventually kicked out of emergency into another room somewhere. They put some kind of cream on my burns which made me cry in pain. The application of the cream directly onto my burnt skin was worse than the burn itself. They then bandaged the burns and finally gave me some painkillers. Praise the lord. They could have given me the painkillers whilst I was in the waiting room for 2 hours. I was told to come back the next day to see the skin specialist so feel free to leave.

Here are my bandaged legs at the hospital:

From Burn, baby, burn

I had no strength to walk, let alone leave the hospital. I basically just kept sitting in a room trying to muster enough strength to leave and get a taxi home. I was in a world of excruciating pain. I literally wanted to die. I would have given anything for the burning pain to subside.

I needed to get out of the hospital for my morale’s sake. My concern was that I would not make it through the night due to the pain if I went home.
Eventually mustered enough strength to walk out the hospital door and straight into a taxi for the 60dollar ride home! Mind you, I was still pantless, dressed in the hospital gown to cover myself somewhat, with bags of ice wedged between my thighs. Finally got home, just packed myself with ice, took painkillers and then passed out and had a surprisingly fitful night’s sleep. I was exhausted and fatigued from the shock.

Quite the traumatic experience.
I’ve been to the hospital every day since for check-ups and change of wound dressings and cream etc.
I have second-degree burns.

On Wednesday (day of the accident), my legs were red and the burning pain was off the charts:
It’s suprising that they went from this, initially (where the most pain was had):

From Burn, baby, burn

to this: the next day (Thursday): this is how my legs looked.

From Burn, baby, burn

Surprisingly not as bad as I thought. It’s interesting, that you can’t tell what the burn mark will look like until the next day.

I am pleased to report that I am totally ok. I have full mobility. And have been at work everyday since.
My arm burn is quite deep, and very sore and sensitive. Hurts to shower, and I whimper and curse every time the hospital staff have to clean it. It will take considerable time to heal.
My legs are totally fine apart from some superficial ugliness – mostly just burn marks….hopefully I will be able to reduce the scarring because it’s not particularly pretty to look at.

Moral of the story: Drink beer. Not hot tea. Tea is hazardous to your health. You can’t burn yourself with beer.

Seriously, though it’s quite shocking how this size cup of boiling water (probably same or less than a softdrink can – 375ml):

From Burn, baby, burn

can do this much damage!

From Burn, baby, burn

Skin is overrated, right? Man, if only I could “burn” fat just as easily. Seriously need to after looking at photos of my thighs! Just the motivation I need to whip my arse into shape.

Unfortunately, this means no swimming for a little while (I’m hoping only a week). But I am actually super genki and even going camping this weekend. (I think denial of pain is the best treatment.)

And needless to say, I haven’t had a hot beverage since the accident. But a craving for a cuppa tea is gonna kick in soon, I’m sure.

Me no Jane. A world of pain

As if Mondays aren’t painful enough.
My arms. My shoulders. My back. A new level of ouch.
Sore is an understatement.

I spent yesterday climbing ladders, climbing nets, tightrope-walking, balancing on planks of wood between treetops and ziplining. I went to a Forest Adventure park near Mount Fuji.

Turns out I have absolutely. no. upper. body. strength.
After swinging off a rope into a Tarzan net, I then had to climb up the net and across to a tree platform. It was impossible for me to climb up a suspended net. Across. Yes.
Up. No.
I was stuck like a spider on this net. Safe to say, I ain’t no Jane. I thought they were going to have to get a cherrypicker to bring me back down. I mustered everything I had and with a helping hand from a friend, I was finally able to get myself off the godforsaken net and onto the tree platform. It seriously nearly pulled the arms out of my sockets.
That Tarzan net was rather traumatising for me and it was only the first 10 minutes in.

Somehow I managed to do all the other obstacles though, but geez did they require balance and upper body strength.

Treetop swinging:

From Fuji Forest Adventure
From Fuji Forest Adventure
From Fuji Forest Adventure

Plank bridge crossing:

From Fuji Forest Adventure

Swinging through logs and ropes:

From Fuji Forest Adventure
From Fuji Forest Adventure

Tree ladder climbing:

From Fuji Forest Adventure

Tightrope walking:

From Fuji Forest Adventure
From Fuji Forest Adventure

I had to pass on the rings. I’m a girl who knows her limits!

From Fuji Forest Adventure
From Fuji Forest Adventure
From Fuji Forest Adventure
From Fuji Forest Adventure

Cool glimpse of Mount Fuji through the treetops:

From Fuji Forest Adventure

The best part was ziplining:

From Fuji Forest Adventure

(Not me):

From Fuji Forest Adventure

Managed to get through all five courses in one piece, save for a handful of bruises!
My poor arms!

From Fuji Forest Adventure
From Fuji Forest Adventure

The best part of the day was the beer, lunch and onsen that followed:

From Fuji Forest Adventure

One hell of a workout. My arms, shoulders and back and even neck are incredibly sore. It hurt to pull my chair out every time at work today. It hurts to walk or move. Couldn’t swim or jog today. Am somewhat concerned, as I will be needing to both swim and run in this weekend’s aquathlon (yes, it’s that time of year again for open water swimming). It hurts to shower let alone swim. Sooo many muscles I never knew existed.

Got an awesome view of Mount Fuji late in the afternoon yesterday.
Fading Fuji-san:

From Fuji Forest Adventure
From Fuji Forest Adventure

32 Truths

1. You don’t always get what you want in life (but that shouldn’t stop you from trying).
2. You can’t make someone feel what they don’t feel.
3. Freedom comes when you learn to let go. (This. A thousand times this.)
4. Embrace simple pleasures – a cup of tea, a hot shower, fresh linen, hearing the voice of loved ones.
5. You get what you can handle. (You are stronger than you give yourself credit for).
6. A hair perm is never a good idea. (Trust me).
7. Rejection/Failure is a 1000 times better than regret. No one gets to see what could have been.
8. Progress always involves risks.
9. Tea is better than coffee.
10. Eating two whole large pizzas will make you constipated.
11. Experience is the most brutal of teachers. (See above).
12. Patience is the key to joy.
13. Memories are designed to fade.
14. Make decisions and stand by them.
15. Don’t focus on what you had. Focus on what you have. Always look at what you have left. Never look at what you have lost.
16. Respect yourself or no one else will.
17. The world owes you nothing.
18. You are worthy of love.
19. Everything is temporary.
20. Always ask. What you don’t ask for always stays the same. Know that you did everything you could.
21. Have faith in what you cannot see.
22. What comes next is up to you.
23. Sleep is underrated. (Oh bed, how I love thee.)
24. Be positive. You’ll live longer!
25. Chocolate always tastes better with a glass of milk. (It just does, ok!)
26. Be classy. Drink champagne.
27. Nothing worth having ever comes easy.
28. Be grateful.
29. EVIL spelt backwards is LIVE.
30. You have what it takes, but sometimes it will take all you’ve got.
31. Age doesn’t matter, unless you are wine or cheese (in both cases, the older the better!)
32. Everything will be ok. In fact, it will be more than ok.

Starsign wine:

<table style=”width:auto”><tr><td><a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/bK6KKXXVyq0pXNVCrUDcdr3WiG6ZayafsHG4V21Kv8g?feat=embedwebsite”><img src=”https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-iXs-Llvsqeg/UZOigLnOu1I/AAAAAAACSHc/aLP_P3CoEX4/s640/photo%25281%2529.JPG&#8221; height=”640″ width=”640″ /></a></td></tr><tr><td style=”font-family:arial,sans-serif;font-size:11px;text-align:right”>From <a href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/aleishariboldi/May152013?authuser=0&amp;feat=embedwebsite”>May 15, 2013</a></td></tr></table>

Happy NEW year: 2013

Excuse the hiatus. Have been super busy since the end of last year. In a nutshell: finished up old job, went back home to Australia for two weeks, ate way too much, caught up with family and friends, busy, busy, busy, flew back to Japan, started new job and new firm the next day, getting familiar with new job, and have been away the last two weekends that I’ve been in Japan since coming back this year. So it’s that time of year again – – New year. New word. And the word for 2013 is…

From January 21, 2013

I’m going to focus on NEW things this year. The new year has started off with a NEW job. New work environment etc. Am also planning on moving apartments this year, so hopefully a NEW residence. I plan on trying NEW things, gaining new skills, new confidence etc. Maybe somewhat a bit of make-over year in terms of lifestyle. Nothing drastic. But sometimes change is good. Out with the old, and in with the new. Also need to lose me a few KGs. I’m at my highest weight ever. I ate all sorts of good stuff back in Oz, and have not found any time to exercise in the last couple of months! So I’ve got to do something about that. Time to focus on a new mindset and let go of the past. So here’s to a Happy NEW year for me…fingers crossed. Will have lots of posts forthcoming. Took way too many photos as usual during my trip back home.