Saturday, February 11, 2012

Early Morning Bike Ride

I've got to say, it's a lot easier to get your morning exercise in when the bike ride looks like this:

Don't let the sunshine fool you, though - February here can still be bitter, bitter cold!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Wednesday Weirdness: Our Local Gorilla in a Bikini

No matter how you look at it . . . it's a gorilla in a bikini scaling the apartment block across the river.

I don't even think it's advertising anything. It's just there. Taunting me like the Great Gonzo with its blatant defiance of gravity and good taste.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

TheSenseitions at ZOMG, Candy!

Our friend Rosa has a candy blog (linked to at right, or here: ZOMG, Candy!), so occasionally we send here some of the strange things we run into overseas. You can see all the things we've sent here. I sent a bag of weirdness when I was back in the US over winter break, and Rosa's just started putting up reviews.

When I pick stuff for Rosa, I try to prioritize three things. First, it has to ship and travel well in all weather, which knocks out chocolate, and be acceptable to customs. Second, I don't get anything expensive or upmarket, since in Japan those candies tend to imitate Western products more closely and therefore are probably less interesting to a candy blogger. Also, they are hard to find in small portions, and I figure Rosa doesn't need a ton just for tasting. Third, Japan is really into local things, so I try to get her products which are hard to find even here. I just sent Okinawan Hi-Chews (candies with a Starburst-like texture) and have some Kyoto specialty Kit-Kats which some day I'll remember to put in the mail.

Unless the product has an awesome name, like Crunky Nude Balls. Then all bets are off.

Diet and Exercise . . . in Japan!

In our last post, we took a look at a week of typical dinners at our place. It turns out those dinners won't be so typical any more.

On Friday, my doctor has recommended some major lifestyle changes: lose a bunch of weight, double my daily exercise, and radically alter my diet.

Some of you know this already, as Nana's been in touch with our herbivorous foodie friends, looking for recipes, tips, and tricks. Others are probably hearing this for the first time, and might be fretting about their holiday menus. (Don't worry, Grandma, we'll figure it out!) But I wanted to post this as soon as possible: partly for motivation, as by committing publicly I'm making it a lot harder for me to let myself fail, and partly because treating something as an interesting, blog-worthy experience can really take the sting out of what would otherwise be a big pain in my (hopefully diminishing) butt.

So over the next few weeks, expect the occasional post about how the typical diet-and-exercise strategies have to be tweaked when you're living in a country where you don't really speak the language and you can't identify half of what you see on the supermarket shelf.

And if you like, wish me a hearty ganbatte!