Socializing gone well

Tonight was a very good night.

I have not gotten home as late as 3:30am in a very, very long time.

I shall celebrate with a shower and my Tuesday underwear (because tomorrow is Saturday).

I have no specific plans for the day tomorrow, aside from doing exercise and being generally awesome, and I am delighted.

Post-a-day 2018

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My longest year so far

Thus ends the longest year of my life.  🙂

In my twentieth year of life, right at the end of it, I spent some time living and studying in France.  My birthday came and went while living there, effectively making my twentieth year of life shorter than any previous year – think birthday to birthday – by a full seven hours.  By the end of my twenty-first year, I had already spent several months living in the USA again, thereby making my twenty-first year seven hours longer – birthday to birthday – than the average year so far in my life (and 14 hours longer than my shortest year of life, which had been the year before it).

Last year, I found myself living half of my year (birthday to birthday year) in Japan.  Therefore, when my birthday came around in 2017, I completed my shortest year of life, its being a full 15 hours shorter than the usual (and eight hours shorter than my shortest year to that point).  Therefore, as I reach my birthday at midnight tonight, living again in the USA, I will be completing the longest year of my life – birthday to birthday, of course – with a full 15 hours more than usual (and 30 hours longer than my shortest year).

Cool, huh?

 

P.S.  Yes, of course I am excluding leap days, because they ruin the fun, and they don’t even make any sense in the first place.  A year is all about the Earth’s revolution around our sun, and a leap day is just a way to make up for the fact that it takes 365.25 (I think it’s actually 365.242189 to be exact) days to go ’round our sun, not just 365.  So, I’m just counting the approximate .25 with every year, instead of adding a whole extra day every fourth year.  Even if I did include leap days, then every leap day would cause the longest year of my life to be that year (and each of those would be equal to one another).  However, the shortest years of my life (still talking birthday to birthday) would remain the same, as they did not contain leap days.  To anyone with a birthday on February 29th – I mean you no injustice or discredit.

Post-a-day 2018

FaceTime

Today (March 5th) is my brother’s birthday.  He lives in Texas.  My dad called me tonight, as a sort of reminder about my brother’s birthday.  This is one thing I love about my dad’s side of the family – we all remind the family whenever it is someone’s birthday.  There are funny bits to this, of course, because it often means that whoever’s birthday it is gets a load of messages and phone calls all at the same time, followed by the thought of, ‘Hmm… I wonder what message just went out to everyone.’  For example, when it is my sister’s husband’s birthday, my sister sends a group text to the family, telling us that it is his birthday.  Within about five minutes, we have all either called or sent a birthday message to him.  There’s no way we all just happen to think of his birthday at the same time, so our ‘cover’ is just plain nonexistent – we were clearly reminded of the birthday.  But, the point is that we all care enough to wish the family member well on his/her birthday.  My dad, I think, is the one who started this sort of tradition we have.

Another aspect of the birthday tradition that my dad created is the song “Birthday” by the Beatles.  Every year, without fail, he finds some way to play the song for us on each of our birthdays.  One year, my eldest sister had an early-morning flight, and so expected to miss the song, since it was always played at home.  However, my dad surprised her with playing the song in the car on the way to the airport (at 6am).  When I was abroad, he would Skype or telephone me, making sure to play the song at the start of the call.

Today, as he was talking to me to remind me about my brother’s birthday, he checked the sound of the song with me, to make sure I could hear it well enough.  He said that he was planning to call my brother right after he got off the phone with me, and I saw that FaceTime had an option to add a call, so we went ahead and called my brother on FaceTime (I did, anyway), by clicking the “add call” button.  However, it ended up not working the way an “add call” button suggests it might work, so I improvised.

Right now, I’m sitting with my laptop on my lap, my phone on the lap of my laptop.  On my phone, I am FaceTime Video-ing with my brother.  On my laptop, I am FaceTime Audio-ing with my dad.  It is the middle of the night for me and the middle of the morning for my brother and dad.  The three of us are talking as though we’re all just hanging out together.  Right now, of course, the two of them are having a bit of their own chatting time, and I am typing.  This points to what is possibly my favorite part of this: I, in Japan, am joining two people on a phone call, who are barely an hour or two apart from one another in Texas.  I’m not even talking right now, but the whole reason they are able to talk to one another is because of me, over here in Japan.  So, it’s kind of like their conversation is taking the long way around… the Really long way.

Or something like that, anyway.  😛

 

Post-a-day 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Birthday

Today was/is (depending on where one is in the world right now) my birthday.  Thank you to my mother and to my father for having and making me.

Now, people at school totally forgot about my birthday, and that’s okay.  A friend was even giving me a hard time about details for an upcoming trip while I was in the middle of my birthday lunch at a nice little Nepalese restaurant, and that’s okay, too.  I wasn’t looking too forward to all of that.

I have been working on my mental and physical health lately, and one part of that has been going to my gym more often.  Instead of once or twice or zero times a week, and only for, perhaps, an hour, I have been going more like five to ten hours a week, attending all sorts of fun classes (boxing to ballet, angels training [a misleading name for the crazy-hard workout that comes with it] to yoga [yes, normal yoga]).  The gym is all women, and we all have to have nicknames, so as to create a close-knit space (instead of the formality of Japanese culture and always using last names), so it makes for a really great environment.

That being said, I was really looking forward to getting to my gym today.  Dinner with a friend was something great on the list, too, but the gym had the extra excitement of helping out my physical health while I enjoyed its being my birthday.

I knew that some of the ladies knew that today was my birthday, and so I was excited to be going somewhere where I could feel the love, so to speak, for my birthday.  Just after I walked in the front door, the lady at the desk wished me a tentative English, “Happy Birthday…?”  A huge grin and verbal thanks assured her of the success of her endeavor.

As I was changing for class, I heard some English being practiced in the common area, “How old are you?”  So, I suspected I was about to be asked this question when I got into class a few minutes later.

What I did not expect, however, was to walk into my step class of older Japanese ladies, and for them to break into song, singing me “Happy Birthday”.  And in English!  I actually started tearing up a bit, it was so wonderful.  If I had been hoping for some welcoming love here, I certainly found it, I found myself thinking.  Essentially, it was perfect.

After class, a number of people kept wishing me a happy birthday and talking to me about this and that.  Before the next class began (yoga), I made a point to interrupt the delighted chatter of the older ladies from step class, and to thank them especially for their singing and well-wishes.  And I did it all in Japanese, and successfully.  They were just so wonderful.

And then they all started asking me how to say the name of a bicycle that has a motor attached to it.  Amidst all the Japanese, I declared that I’d have to do some research, because I could only think of electric bicycle and motorized bicycle.  

But that’s not quite the point.  The point is, I suppose, that step class is amazing – you could do yourself quite well by joining one wholeheartedly today.  🙂

Also, all of my thanks to all who played a part in my coming to be.  🙂

Happy Birthday to me.  Watch out, World!  😀
Post-a-day 2017

 

Mardi Gras

Tomorrow is Mardi Gras and my birthday.  This is the second time in my life that the two events have coincided.  It just so happens that people haven’t even heard of Mardi Gras here in Japan, so we can let alone the idea of their celebrating it.  I am throwing an impromptu dinner tomorrow night (decided it this afternoon), and am only certain of two guests (a Canadian and a Japanese friend).  Not my favorite kind of Mardi Gras bash, but it’ll still be nice, I think.  Nonetheless, this will be one of my most simple and uncelebrated birthdays yet.

The last time my birthday coincided with Mardi Gras, I was in ninth grade, and we had arranged with a friend of my mom’s to go stay at his place on one of the main parade roads in New Orleans for Mardi Gras.  Unfortunately, that was 2006, and Hurricane Katrina cancelled those plans for us.  

We instead grabbed my childhood best friend, and went down to Galveston for some all-you-can-eat pancakes and a good ole parade.  It was nothing like New Orleans would have been, but it was still wonderful, and it started a tradition.  Almost every year since (we must exclude the year I was studying in France), my mom and I have gone to Gaveston for Mardi Gras.

Which makes it totally weird that there is literally nothing around here for any Mardi Gras merriment… happy birthday to me?  (There’s got to something good for me to get out of all of this.) 😛
Post-a-day 2017

Ouch

I decided Friday that I wanted to do another running challenge with my birthday as the deadline/goal line.  I had just run a bit over two miles, and I could feel the pain (though it was slight, I am not accustomed to two miles being any sort of painful).  And so I decided 66 miles total by my birthday, the end of February (most years, anyway).

With the consideration of upping it to 100 miles, I got myself out on another run today – I realized that running two miles every day would get me close to 100 anyway, and so, the more I run, the longer the distances get, and the less often I have to run (meaning not daily).  It ended on top of the riverbank hill, watching the sun set behind the clouds blocking Mt Fuji (Bummer, I know, but it was still beautiful.).  And that was great, except that, once I attempted to walk back home, I could barely use my legs.

As I had been running, it had felt like the second day of cross country practice all over again – a painful, when will this ever end beginning to my dislike of what was once one of my favorite pastimes.  Standing in my hot shower after the run, my right knee was swollen, and my legs felt worse than they have in years, as though preparing to give out beneath me, and crying silently all the while.

So, now I’m unsure as to what will happen with my running challenge, as I also have a swollen spot on the right side of my lower back (first time for that one), which also hurts… hmm.

The whole idea was a sort of way for me to release pent-up energy regularly, and to get myself fit like I want again.  Kind of like a Happy Birthday to me thing.  Let’s hope I wake up revived and well in the morning, shall we?  Yes, let’s. 🙂
Post-a-day 2017