Saturday, January 31, 2004

Happy Birthday Jennifer!

Today I just hung around at home. My student cancelled (I love it when that happens), so I just bummed around on the net. Tomorrow I will do work and putter around at home. Having two days off is lovely.

Friday, January 30, 2004

Hmmmm... fell asleep at 7 pm and didn't wake up until 9am (I'm backdating this entry). Guess I was tired! But I missed my mitt class darnit! I really like the one on Friday nights cuz the instructor is really fun and she always makes a point of demonstrating the moves for me ... cuz I can guarantee just listening to instructions won't result in accurate responses on my part.

Hiroshi has renamed me CTO. I am now the Chief Travel Officer LOL. He finally got Linux installed on his PC and is having fun playing with it. Now he wants another PC to act as a server so he can play more. How come boys toys are so expensive??!! Ok that's unfair coming from the jewellery present girl. But still!

I'm still reading thru the book on Morocco. So far I've learned that we are going to be accosted by touts everywhere we go. It sounds worse than India. At least by the time we'll get to India, we'll be seasoned in ignoring them! Learned that a good quality carpet costs 80 to 120 bucks per square meter. We won't be getting a carpet souvenir.

Speaking of souvenirs, where are we going to put them! Do you have any idea how small those backpacks are??!! Thankfully I don't wear makeup. The only thing that needs to travel with me are some barettes, an elastic and my tweezers (aka a girl's true best friend). I suppose a hairbrush and a toothbrush and toothpaste too. They don't take up too much room but there still isn't much space in those bags.

Guess my whole minimalist thing better kick into high gear. I'm looking thru my apartment thinking, that has to go, don't need those so they're garbage, etc. My most recent 'item' is movies. I have about 100 of them (these were culled last year already!) and I never watch them. I'm going to donate them to work. (Cal - if you want free movies I'll let you know when I'm bringing them in so you can have first pick). Let someone else watch them. I don't care if people walk off with them (that is what happened with the movies that used to be at work), just as long as they aren't taking up space in my apartment. Soon I'm going to go thru my clothes....

Thursday, January 29, 2004

Man, my butt hurts. I've been sitting at my PC all afternoon and evening editing my on-line learning program. Looks like we have the go-ahead, so we have to do all kinds of edits over the next month. (We being my colleague on the system side and the company we're working with for web-design) Not as big a contract as I expected (100 instead of 500 students), but it looks like I will be managing it on at least a part-time basis. Hoping that this will eventually be a full-time position. I enjoy teaching, but I want more regular hours. It would be heaven to have a 9-5 desk job!

Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Total budgeted cost for the RTW (averaging out the budget and mid-price costs) is: $48,339 not including visa fees or airfare. Umm... I think I need to go back to the drawing board and either not worry about avoiding winter (oh no!) or do it all budget travel or spend more time in cheaper places and elminate the expensive ones. :( Or find those rich relatives. How come I haven't had any takers yet???!!

Of course 554 days might be a bit excessive...

Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Argh. I hate Excel. Well, more specifically I hate Excel when I have a broken mouse. My left click button sticks (I have a touchpad mouse on my PC to clarify why I don't just replace the mouse) so when I click on a cell it double or quadruple clicks. Sometimes I don't even press the button and it double clicks on cells and then all hell breaks loose in my spreadsheet. This does not make me a happy camper. Especially when I'm dealing with multiple calculations that are all dependant on each other and my mouse just decides to go psycho and start moving formulae around. Maybe I should have it exorcised.

I'm trying to put together a budget for the RTW. There will be the budget budget and the mid-price range budget. With what I have so far, the trip is too darn expensive to do it all mid-range. However, the budget way seems to be right about where I thought it would be. I haven't included flights or visa fees yet though and it looks like we'll need to save more money than I though. Or shorten the trip. There's a novel idea. It is now somewhere at 20 months???!!! Ok, I think I got obsessed avoiding winter. But if you can live in Vietnam for a month on $1000, why not do it? Probably because the budget runs out eventually. Where are all my rich relatives (or winning lottery tickets) hiding???

Tonight I didn't make it to the gym. My evening classes cancelled, so I went out for coffee with my class of seniors that I teach Tuesday afternoons. Then waited for like 45 minutes for a bus that never came (there should've been two during this time frame). Luckily two of my students were waiting with me and one ended up driving me to the station. By the time I got home I felt a fever coming on so went to bed with a tylenol at 6:30 with every intention of getting up to go to the gym... I woke up at 11:45. So guess I was tired. Now I'm playing on the internet and having a tea before I go back to bed again.

Monday, January 26, 2004

Today I totally did not want to go to the gym. Luckily Hiroshi got on my case and I went. Once I was there it was ok, but man it is easy to make excuses when you're tired! Tomorrow gym time is 7:30 pm.

Sunday, January 25, 2004

Oh no! :( Captain Kangaroo died.

Saturday, January 24, 2004

Didn't end up going in to work. By the time I piddled around and got dressed, it was after 5. So Hiroshi and I went out to dinner for date night tonight instead. I figured it would be better if I went into work tomorrow morning - Hirohsi doesn't go to bed until the wee hours, so he sleeps most of the day. I can go in and get stuff done while he's sleeping. If I had gone today, I'd probably have had to go back tomorrow.

Anyway, we went to Sizzler out in Odaiba (because I'm still mad at Outback). Odaiba is an island that is reclaimed land (read: made of garbage). Sizzler is in one of the big malls out there. I was suprised at how busy it was.... and even more surpirsed when Sizzler didn't have a lineup! And then again at the view! One of the nicer views in Tokyo is of the Rainbow bridge at night, and there is a beautiful view from the restaurant. There is a terrace too so we want to go back in the summer and eat outside with the view. It will be nice!

I ate too much at the restaurant. All that salad stuff. Delicious. Now I feel aweful though. Bloated stomach. Need to go and have an after-dinner rest. Geesh - I feel like its Thanksgiving or Christmas.
Playing with my blog today. I moved my hit counter to the side bar and changed the numbers from Japanese to roman numerals. Now you can read them too :) Also added a quit smoking meter to the bottom of the page. Hope to make some other minor changes (like changing the links colour). Right now I think I'm going to go into work and do some reports (blech!). Tomorrow I hope to start scanning in the pics in my photo albums (part of the big clean up / getting rid of stuff I don't need campaign) and update my photoblog which is more than a week behind!

Friday, January 23, 2004

Ok everyone, get your maps out because we've decided the RTW route! It does a big circle from Europe to Asia and back to Europe, but this will ensure no winter weather! LOL
So, starting in Nov:
Costa Rica
South America (not sure on this route yet, but Brazil, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina)
South Africa
Tanzania (for February)
possible jaunt over to Jordan
Spain (by ferry around beginning of April)
Finland (around September)
Russia - St. Petersburg and Moscow and then Trans-Siberian
China in October
Tibet (I consider this a separete country from China)
Vietnam by train from China in November or December
India via Bangkok for January/February
possible jaunt to Sri Lanka
Maldives (back to India)
Iran in March
Uzbekistan aound April
Greece in May
back to Canada in July or August

All up: 19 months, 34 countries, untold dollars LOL If we can't save enough money we'll have to cut off parts of the trip. Basically we've put a lot of Europe at the end cuz we can go there any time.

This is the dream trip! Do I have any rich relatives that want to donate funds? ;)

Thursday, January 22, 2004

Very sad :( I wanted to go to Bam in Iran because there is a wonderful old city there. Well it was destroyed in the December earthquake.

The scary thing about all the loss of life and devestation in Iran is that the earthquake wasn' t that strong. Japan regularly has earthquakes of that magnitude. Guess those earthquake designed buildings really do withstand large movements in the earth.

Wednesday, January 21, 2004

I want to go here! Check out the pics for this blog entry (Erik's blog as previously plugged). For those of you who are technically challenged, click on the coloured text within the body and the pics will appear. Salt flats of Bolivia. Wow. What an amazing place. Guess where I'm going? :)

Tuesday, January 20, 2004

I'm zipping thru the book on Iran and well, Iran just sounds cool! And talk about cheap. The author goes on and on about how 1500 rials is a bit expensive for a personal pizza, or how 9000 rials for steak is pricey but worth it if you want something different. Granted the guide is a bit out of date, but I imagine prices haven't changed that much. Latest market exchange rate (not official rate - apparently banks now offer the black market rate and official rate is only for import/export purposes) is like 8400 rials per dollar. So you can get a steak dinner for a buck and that is a bit expensive??!!! I mean, even if prices have doubled that's a whole steak dinner for two bucks. Man, we'll be livin it up in Iran!

Aside from the fact that it is cheap, it just seems really interesting. Definitely want to spend a month there... hopefully I won't have any problems with the visa. Japanese can get visas to Central Asia with no problem. Hiroshi can walk up to the border and go right on thru. I have to apply at least three weeks in advance at an Iranian embassy. And I thought that Canadian passports were on of the best to have. It will be interesting at the end of all this to see who has to pay the most fees all up to get visas to get into all the different places we are going.

Radio station today is on French. I can actually understand parts of it. Yes I can hear rustry gears deep in my brain throwing off the dust and grinding into action. I might remember it faster than I had thought. I figured it was gone not having used it in so long. Anyway for some reason they're playing middle eastern music on the French channel. Kinda fitting for my reading!

Monday, January 19, 2004

So I'm on to the latest travel guide - Iran. Haven't gotten too much into it yet but it seems interesting. I want to wear a chador. I think it would be fun. You could walk around naked underneath and no one would ever know.... except Hiroshi. Interesting fact - while your passport can be normal, when you submit photos for your visa applictation, you must be dressed appropriately - i.e. women must have hair and neck covered. Sad sad thing - Bam is supposedly one of the most interesting and historical sites and Iran. It got squashed in the recent earthquake :( Hopefully they'll be able to repair the damage and there will be at least some of it left.
Diet check: gym - yes food - so-so

Sunday, January 18, 2004

I love lazing around in my pyjamas all day! Today I woke up at 10 and turned the washing machine on and promptly went back to bed. Around 2, Hiroshi got up but I wanted to snuggle under the covers a bit more. I vacilated between snoozing and staring at my world map (courtesy of Cal - thanks Cal!). Around 4 Hiroshi asked if I was going to get up, to which I responded, "No, I'm going to stay in bed all day!". He went out to browse the bookstore. I eventually got up around 6:30, but have not changed out of my jammies. Today is lazy day for me. I checked my e-mail, did a bit of stuff for work, and we ordered pizza for dinner cuz Hiroshi wanted it and I wasn't cooking or going outside today - that would require putting clothes on ;) I'm going to go and read more of Iron Rooster now. I love lazy days!

Saturday, January 17, 2004

Now it feels like Christmas - when's Santa coming?? :) It snowed today! Well barely - all these microscopic dandruff like flakes kinda started and stopped all day long. Now it is snowing so you don't have to squint to see it and is actually making the ground wet. Believe it or not, I'm pretty sure this is the first time I have seen snow in two years. Wow.

Friday, January 16, 2004

I joined an aqua mitt class at the gym tonight. It was so much fun! Basically you get webbed gloves to put on your hands so there is resistance and then you do all kinds of fun things like tai chi and fighting moves. My arms and legs are already killing! While you are doing it, it isn't so hard cuz it is like no impact. I definitely got a nice workout :) I'm going to check the schedule and do this more often cuz it is fun too!

Thursday, January 15, 2004

Went to the second hand book store today and picked up some more travel guides and some travel tales. One of the books I bought was Riding the Iron Rooster by Paul Theroux. I'm in the middle of reading a novel already, but I just read the first paragraph of this book and I was hooked. It's great. I'm really enjoying it and have put aside the other novel until I can finish this one. I've seen several recommendations on travel sites for Paul Theroux's books, but I didn't expect I'd enjoy it this much.
I also picked up The Alchemist by Paul Coelho which is also highly recommended. Hopefully that will be just as good! The two travel books: Morocco and Iran. Today I've been thinking about Jordan... might be another stop. The trip keeps getting longer....
For the old people ;) ... is this better mom? :) Don't throw shrimp at me!

Wednesday, January 14, 2004

So I finally took the time to figure out how to change the text size on my blog. I didn't like how big it was. I'm happy now. Of course, now y'all have to squint. ;) What do you think? I'll be doing some other minor changes over the next few days I think. Oh memories of playing with code.

Tuesday, January 13, 2004

So Hiroshi and I are re-thinking the departure date of the RTW plan. Originally we had thought June 2005 because that is when our lease renews and we have to fork over a couple thousand dollars in fees to renew it. But that presents a couple problems - the first being we'll hit India in the height of summer and 45C heat and the second being how to get to Costa Rica in November to meet up with Jen and Mike for their wedding festivities.

So after much thinking and waffling, we are on to departure plan B. We'll renew our lease (or move into a weekly rental). Then we'll be able to save a bit more, thus lenghtening our trip. We'll start our RTW in Costa Rica (might hit Las Vegas first to get married by Elvis though). Then we'll work our way thru South America from mid-November to mid-January. We'll catch a flight to South Africa from Rio and then up to Tanzania in February to see the birth of the wildebeasts (which is amazing appartently, and low season too!). From there, possibly we'll hit Egypt, otherwise we'll go directly to Tunisia and then on to Morocco from which we'll cross over to Spain by ferry. That means we'll hit Europe in early spring. How perfect is that?

Then we'll hang out in Europe for several months. Two months in Spain - we might go back for the Running of the Bulls in July. We'll also spend a month in Italy and Greece and hit a few other places - thinking about Czeck, Poland, Hungary, Netherlands, Sweden, Germany right now. From here we can either cross into Central Asia and on into India or we can take the trans-Siberian Express across Russia, thru Mongolia and on into China. The reason for doing it this way is it is easier to cross the Himalayas coming from China (China is reluctant to issue visas if you say you are going to Tibet which is your entry point from Nepal). And we'd get to take the Trans-Siberian :) Then we'd hit Central Asia from India, cross back into Europe and fly on to Canada in time for Christmas 2006.

So the trip is looking like it will be a 12 month thing. Those few extra months will let us save a bit more so we're not scrimping and having to cut things short. So now our route is a bit circular but we'll go with the weather pretty much... oh a whole year without winter. How great is that??!!

Monday, January 12, 2004

Eggs sold 6 months after produced ... ummm.... and Hiroshi gets upset when I use eggs that are a week past the sticker. And 'produced' kinda implies frankenfood doesn't it. Hmm... I'm starting to feel a bit queasy - I ate eggs for breakfast.
Egypt - to go or not to go. Egypt is the latest country for RTW consideration. Found Nile cruises that fit our budget that take you to all the sites. I'm having a hard time deciding. I mean, its the pyramids, but do I really want to see them? It didn't make my 'must see' list but is on the 'possible stop' list. What is everyone's opinion? So far the African stops include Morocco, Tunisia, Tanzania and maybe Cape Town on route to South America.

Sunday, January 11, 2004

Went to see Mystic River with Hiroshi tonight. Excellent performance by Tim Robbins. Interesting movie - I liked it simply because it isn't the normal garbage Hollywood pumps out. Although the ending had a bunch of stupid crap that took away from the movie overall IMO.

Last month when we went to the show we got a movie-goers card. I forget the actual name. Anyway, it is 300 yen to buy it, but unless the woman made a mistake you get 200 yen off the ticket price every time! That was a nice surprise! And you get points - once you get 1000 points you get a free ticket. (You get 10% of what you buy in points) You can also collect more points for premium seating - it is kinda like a big couch that you and your 'date' can watch the show on - or for lunch or dinner at the hotel restaurant (the theater is in Shinagawa Prince Hotel) or even a stay at the hotel. That's pretty cool. So definitely worth the 300 yen.

Also went to Outback tonight for dinner. It was the worst service we have ever had. Absolutely awful. We waited five minutes for our server to come over and this was only after we flagged one down, it took them 20 minutes to bring our food, they never stopped by to see if we wanted refills on our drink, and the worst was it took them more than 20 minutes to bring our bill... despite asking THREE people!! I was not happy. We were standing there beside our table with our coats on ready to walk out before they finally brought it. If we weren't already 5 minutes late for the show I would've asked to complain to the manager. If we go back I will. For the prices you pay there that lack of service is appalling. Luckily their baked potatos taste sinfully delicious or I would definitely never go back there. OK - Outback rant over :)

Saturday, January 10, 2004

So today a big thanks goes out to Cal who directed Hiroshi to a public radio link. Lots of stations from around the world. This is good because Hiroshi's been listening to Czech radio for the last week. It was interesting for the first day or so and then it just got downright irritating. Especially when trying to concentrate on anything. So now we're listening to a Madrid radio station. Getting me in the mood for travelling... either that or dancing to the music with Spanish guitar. I feel like I'm being seranaded.

Friday, January 09, 2004

Made nabe tonight for dinner... mmmm hotpot :) In the supermarket we found some fish balls and shrimp balls. I'm not such a big fan of the fish balls (get your minds out of the gutter! They are ground fish paste meatball like things) but Hiroshi likes them. I was happy to find the shrimp ones and they were mmm, mmm good! Loaded up my soy sauce based soup with shiritaki (konnyaku noodles - konnyaku is like super food: pure fiber made from the root of a mountain potato), mushrooms, bok choi and shrimp balls. Delicious!

Thursday, January 08, 2004

Today I dragged my butt out of bed after being awake all night feeling nautious, and tried to work. That didn't last very long. Came home at noon and conked out. Starting to feel better. Had some strawberries for dinner - stomach is sort of ok with them. Wish I had some crackers or something but don't have the energy to go to the store. Not to mention it is really darn cold today. Winter is coming :( Going to get myself a cup of tea and then head off back to bed. Have pics to upload to the photoblog, but will have to wait until tomorrow I think. New pics are coming soon!

Wednesday, January 07, 2004

I feel sick today so I'm going to whine. My tummy is upset and even toast makes me nautious. I want to eat the strawberries that I bought yesterday (only 300 yen a pack which is REALLY cheap!), but don't want to feel crappy afterwards. My last class cancelled tonight so I got to laze in bed. I slept most of the afternoon and am up now otherwise I'll be wide awake at 3am. I think I'm gonna go back and snuggle in bed and watch a movie or something.
Ok, I'm finished whining now :)

Tuesday, January 06, 2004

So I made the purple potato things on Monday and brought them in to my class of elderly women today. I was worried because they are too wet.. but they all said it was fine and said they were great. That was a relief. You know worrying about them tasting horrilbe, what if there is a hair in one of them, what if they think they're weird. Ok, I easily admit I tend to obsess about things. They always make yummy goodies though that taste awesome so there is this huge pressure to make something that tastes good. And they all keep travelling places and bringing back omiyage which is horrilbe for the diet! Omiyage are food souvenirs. Things like cookies, crackers, mini-sponge cakes etc etc. They always force the leftovers on me too... which makes Hiroshi happy cuz I just bring them home for him to eat.
Anyway, I'm sleepy tonight so it is off to bed for me. Want to get a good night sleep so I'm bright eyed tomorrow.

Monday, January 05, 2004

Today I didn't have any classes, so I got to extend my holiday by one more day. I definitely do NOT want to go back to work tomorrow *cry* I like this time off lazing around at home doing nothing stuff. You know, sleep until mid-afternoon and then piddle around.
Despite being a holiday today was first day back on the diet. I did pretty good today. I ate fairly well - I even cooked! And I went to the gym and had a good workout in the pool. I experimented with treading water and kicking exercises. Man they're tiring. And then did some laps and aqua-jogging. I'm going to be sore tomorrow. But, that's good :D
Have to go and plan what to eat tomorrow. Maybe oatmeal with strawberries for breakfast and a mushroom omelette. Lunch time I'll have a melon and cottage cheese and mid-afternoon a salmon wrap. Not sure what to have in the evening yet - but it will be healthy!

Sunday, January 04, 2004

So Hiroshi and I are sitting here watching K1. Basically a free for all where men try to knock each other senseless. I have no idea why I am watching this. At first it was pretty funny cuz Bob Sapp (who is absolutely huge - popularity wise - in Japan) was just chasing people around the ring, and when he shoved them they'd go flying over backwards. Now the matches are getting into bloody messes though - yuck. Hiroshi is entranced.

Saturday, January 03, 2004

So sister Jen and Mike have finally decided on a wedding date... November 14, 2005. They'll be getting married in Costa Rica... so Hiroshi and I will swing over there during our RTW. Yippee one more country to visit LOL.

Also doing some research and Tunisia looks really great! Might take the ferry over from Spain and spend two weeks there. Oh the trip is extending and extending. I think there will have to be some tough decisions in terms of eliminating places :( Right now the trip is about a year long and I think the budget is only going to hold out for 6 to 8 months. It is the side trips to Maldives and Tanzania.... *sigh* I might have to give up Maldives *cry* Tanzania is going to be about 20% of our budget for one week, but seriously we'll never do it again. Maldives just has nice little islands and great beaches. And villa huts that sit over the ocean which we can't afford. So really I guess we could go to any beach... but Maldives looks so nice :(

Hope Hiroshi gets a kick ass job where he makes lots of money so we can stash tons of money away this year. Or maybe someone will win the lottery and share with me? I certainly didn't win anything on the Jumbo lottery tickets I bought *grumble* I was SURE I was going ot win something decent. Jumbo lottery is held like 4 times a year and has really big prizes. All I got was 300 yen on 1 out of 5 tickets. *sigh* The darn things cost 300 yen a piece. Geesh.

Friday, January 02, 2004

So I survived the trip down to Hamamatsu to visit Hiroshi's parents for New Year. I arrived late on the 30th. On the 31st MIL (mother in law) and I went shopping for food to make New Year dishes. Obaa-san (older women) in Japan are notorious for being pushy and fanatical when it comes to bargains and MIL is no exception. First off we pulled into the parking lot which was worse than the mall in North America at noon on the 24th December. Then I was pushed, shoved and jostled without one 'sumimasen' (excuse me). I was shocked - I have never experienced rude Japanese before.

Anyway, MIL was going crazy over the discounts. Actually there were some really good ones. We got eggs for 30 cents (carton of 10), blocks of tofu for 20 cents, and a whole salmon for ten bucks. Then we also had to inspect everything to find the best looking one - I swear we spent 15 minutes searching for pretty spinach!

We finally made it to the checkout when MIL decided that she wanted to do another run thru. My job was to wait by the checkout area while she shopped more.... fine with me. She said she needed to get two more things... and came back with a whole basket! Then she needed something else. But midway thru that mission she saw a friend of hers whom she literally dragged over to meet me. Off she went and came back with things that had been marked down more than what we had bought. That third trip thru saved about ten bucks!

All in all it was kinda fun. I was really worried cuz this was just me and MIL - Hiroshi was at home cleaning. I was really worried about communication! But other than something about the salmon that I still don't understand everything was fine.

On New Year's Eve we ended up watching some Japanese singing show and commenting on how well different people were singing traditional (enka) songs. Now I actually like enka - I'm probably about the only gaijin (foreigner) that does. So we spent New Years Eve watching tv instead of cooking... I was under the impression you weren't supposed to cook at all on New Year's Day which is why there is a whole set of dishes for it. Oh well. My suggestion to go and view the first sunrise of the year which is totally Japanese was booed down too. Geesh! Wimps. All whining about being too cold and too early to get up. I even suggested watching it on tv (all the tv channels show it) but no one wanted to get up. Party poopers. Had to drag Hiroshi over for the traditional kiss at the strike of midnight - he was all embarrassed that his mom might see.

On New Years we just hung around. Didn't do much. Didn't even do any cooking until almost midnight LOL. We made kinton which is chestnuts in sweet potato paste. It is actually really good. Also made bean kinton - which uses beans only (no sweet potato or chestnuts). That was good too. And we made purple potatos!

Purple potatos (murasaki imo) are dark purple inside. Very cool! MIL said you can only get them twice a year too. We cooked and mashed and sweetened them, and then added some gelatin. I'm like, ewwww, purple goo. Little did I know that this was just an ingredient! The next day we used cheese cloth to shape the purple goo around chestnuts so that they were cute little purple balls with sweet chestnut in the middle. They are really good! And the colour is awesome! I'm going to make some for my class of older women and will take pics of the process and put them in my blog sometime next week.

Anyway we didn't end up eating our o-sechi ryori (New Year food) until the 2nd. After we had a breakfast of lots of traditional foods we headed off to visit BIL's (brother in law) grave. We washed it and put some plant (like branches with leaves - I don't know the name) in the vases. Then prayed. After that we came back home for dinner and then left again for me to come home. Hiroshi comes back tomorrow.

So it was a good visit. MIL is getting into some elderly habits though. She's keeping food ... which is fine except that it is old and not refridgerated. She'll leave meat out (cooked) overnight. She has things sitting on the table for days. Doesn't want to throw anything out. The potatos burned when we were cooking them - we tried to throw out the ones that were stuck on the bottom but she refused. Its pretty bad. Hiroshi was trying to get her to tidy up and put things away but she was being obstinate and didn't see anything wrong. I don't understand how a woman who can spend 15 minutes finding perfect spinach refuses to throw out nasty burnt potato. *shrug* Other things too like using a cutting board on the corner of the sink/edge of the counter with extra knives sitting nearby (cuz there is day old food all over the counter) which means events like flying knives happen. Scary. She's got a smaller car but still has trouble driving especially at night. I told Hiroshi to talk to his sister to keep a watch - it isn't safe. We veered into oncoming traffic twice in a period of three days.

Anyway, Hiroshi is quite depressed. His dad called him aside and told him he wouldn't live much longer. Apparently there is a problem with his lung. That means he's the only one left (meaning the only male and therefore the head of the family). He's a bit upset about that... and that his mom is declining. He doesn't want to accept their mortality I think. However, FIL will be 72 this year and MIL 70 so statistically their time will come soon.

On a more upbeat note - Hiroshi has decided he hates his house... now that he spent a week cleaning it LOL Our small apartment is definitely a lot easier! He's suggested getting a maid for when we finally get a house - great idea if he pays for it!

Thursday, January 01, 2004

1. I will weigh 160 or less by Dec 31, 2004.
2. I (we) will save US$20,000 for the RTW trip.
3. I will take more 'me' time

So there they are for all the world to see. They sound like the same pat answers that everyone gives. However, the reality is that I DO need to lose weight (note I put my goal weight and not how much I actually need to lose) and I do need to take more 'me' time (part of the reason why I regained weight this year). I think I should print them out and put them on my PC.

How about everyone else? Any resolutions you want to share?