Aug. 17th, 2007 02:23 pm
Happy birthday to me!

For some reason, that one always cracks me up. :) And you know you're spending too much time giggling at LOLcats when your first reaction, upon spotting a giant cockroach exploring your kitchen, is to say, quite firmly, "Do not want!" *whacks roach with frying pan*

Though I must say, until today -- and this is the cue to knock on wood -- I've only seen four cockroaches in my apartment. The first was a big ugly thing, almost two inches long, that I smeared on the wall above the sink with the aforementioned frying pan. The second one was much smaller and escaped through the window while I was searching for a weapon. The third one, also small, made the mistake of hiding in the shadow of my bed, instead of scuttling beneath, and was summarily dispatched. The fourth though itself clever to run into the cupboard while I was trying to get a pot to flatten it with, but my patience was rewarded a couple of days later when the bug emerged and decided to take a stroll. My aunt got quite a laugh out of watching me, pot in hand, stalk the thing into the bathroom, move the toilet paper and the kleenex and the little set of shelves it was hiding behind, and finally, after three or four loud THRONG!s of the pot hitting wall and/or floor, kill it.

In a way, I'm surprised I've seen even four (not counting a few I've seen outdoors). Everytime I prepared to travel to a supposedly roach-infested part of the globe, I was promised huge bugs, flying cockroaches and all sorts of creepy-crawlies in my shoes. Guatemala? I saw a couple of spiders and a really neat stick-insect. Vietnam? One flying cockroach, and it didn't even fly in my presence, though it had no problem putting on a show for M-P. The geckos were cute, though. Mexico? A dead roach in a hotel room and a huge, live cricket on a discarded pillow the next morning. A hotel room in Bulgaria yielded some cockroaches, but they were small and boring and stayed well away from me, prefering to hide under G's bed.

Anyway, enough about that. Is mah birfday, dammit! I had some succulent sushi for lunch and bought a nice bottle of wine and fruity pastries for this evening. Methinks I'll try to make myself some cocktails; aside from the wine, I have chilled sake, club soda, cranberry liqueur, raspberry liqueur and fresh lemon juice. And mango Fanta! :D

But before that, I think I'll go update my Travelpod to tell the world how sweaty I've been these past few weeks.
Summer is definitely on its way. The past two day have brought that morning heat, when you wake up slightly sweaty and even after the shower, your skin stays warm and humid. My window has stayed open since yesterday morning, which has required me to adjust my modesty settings; the window itself is frosted glass, so it's no problem when it's shut, but I'm at street level so with it open, even with the sheer curtain, I have to be more careful about stripping down to try on my latest work-in-progress. Which is, surprise, surprise, another skirt! What can I say, Japan is a great place to wear skirts. And they're easy to make without a pattern. I would have finished it yesterday, but a boneheaded cutting move on my part resulted in me having to change my mode of attack. I should finish it today, though, only the hem, the zipper and turning the waistband in are left.

Perhaps of interest to those who've been writing about weight, recently, and have a lot of time on their hands, Part I: FOOD! )
Yesterday, I cycled all the way across Tokyo! Go me! I figured that since I'd had my bike shipped all the way to Japan, I might as well use it, right? Well, I hadn't actually ridden it in at least... three or four years. Aside from some rusting of the gear shift (which wasn't working properly anyway, even before the rust), it seems fine. Except what the hell was I wearing when I adjusted the height of the seat, anyway? Platform shoes? It's too high for comfort when I stop (and riding a bicycle in Tokyo involves a lot of waiting around at traffic lights) but I tried lowering it and it seems to be... rusted in place. >_< Seriously, I was leaning my full weight on it and it wouldn't budge.

My excursion yesterday was from my old apartment to my new one, a thirty-minute subway (one line, no transfers) + fifteen-minute walk journey. It took me about one hour and twenty minutes, though that includes waiting for traffic lights to change and a few stops for pictures, since my route took me around the southern side of the Imperial Grounds, which are surrounded my a moat and are quite pretty.

Cyclists in Tokyo use the sidewalks, which is a good deal safer than it would be on the street. The only people you see wearing helmets are very young children or people who are actually cycling for sport/exercise, as opposed to nearly anyone else, who uses it as a mode of transportation. And I must admit, the whole helmet-wearing deal was one reason I sort of stopped cycling (when I was a kid, before helmets became mandatory, I spent an awful lot of time on my bike) because what's the fun of it when you can't feel the wind in your hair, a.k.a. The Taste Of Freedom?

Wow -- the sky suddenly went almost black and it's started to rain. I haven't seen a daytime sky this dark in ages, it's like right after sunset when there's only a little light left. Strong winds, too. Freaky!

Another difference here is that almost everyone has a "girl's bike", with the low crossbar. Mine has a high one, I guess because I thought it was cooler and obviously never intended to ride it while wearing a skirt. Well, I did yesterday and despite the wind, I had no trouble of the skirt-accidently-flying-up variety. Also, everyone has at least one basket, sometimes two (front and back) and a bell to warn pedestrians out of the way. I'm going to have to get myself one of those as well as a basket. Yesterday I had a backpack to carry my things and today, my collarbone is sore. My bum is also sore, though I'm not sure how much of that is due to not being used to the seat and how much of it is due to the seat being uncomfortable. It just makes me remember all those times I'd sit on my father's lap when I was a kid and he'd complain about my "sharp bum bones" and wonder how I could ever be comfortable sitting down. I was perhaps a rather scrawny child.

Ooh, lightning -- and a huge clap of thunder! O_O And another! It's practically right over me now, that was only a one-second delay.

I'm chewing blueberry gum. Yum! What will they think of next? Oh, right, plum gum!

I was afraid I'd never be able to listen to Leonard Cohen again, after listening to him non-stop in the weeks after I found out G was having an affair. But here I am and it doesn't bring up the pain and I'm so glad that experience didn't ruin such beautiful words. I agree with [ profile] krk, "Hallelujah" is amazing, but I also love "I'm Your Man", "Who By Fire", "Take This Waltz" and "A Thousand Kisses Deep". But I think my favourite is the heartbreaking "Alexandra Leaving". It's a rare time when I can sing it and get through to the end without my voice breaking at least once.
Were I forced to bestow the title of Best Condiment, I would probably choose ketchup out of lifelong loyalty. It was, after all, a major part of my nutrition when I was growing up and one of the first food items I moved into my new apartment. However, I must admit to being most partial to mayonnaise, especially the Japanese variety. Not too creamy, not too strong, not too salty, just right for tomato sandwiches.

Today I'm experimenting for the first time with my washing machine. I recognise some of the characters on it, but I'm still not quite sure whether to read it right to left, as Japanese normally is, or left to right, as it is sometimes printed on various items, so I don't know if I chose the long cycle or the short one. I'm pretty sure it's the long one, because the button at the opposite end seems to say "quick", but I guess I'll find out when the machine stops making funny sloshing sounds. There are different combinations of cycles to choose from as well, and I have no idea what they could be, so let's hope my socks come out all right!

*machine starts whirring*

Ooh, now that must be the spin cycle.



February 2012

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