Thursday Doors – Otaru (part 3)

So I know I’ve already gone back to Tokyo in my post earlier this week, but I’ve got unfinished business in Otaru, so we’re heading back to Japan’s north island for this instalment of Thursday Doors. Actually just a quick post this time because, between my never-ending struggle to improve my sleeping habits (i.e. to sleep earlier) and my other writing commitments, I’m gonna have to pare down my blogging time a little. Just a little.

If you’ve been following my Japan posts, or even just my TD posts about doors in Japan, you’ll probably know that I really like snow. With that in mind, here are some doors + snow:  Continue reading

Tokyo – part 2a (back to Shinjuku)

I can’t believe it’s already been about five months since my friend and I went to Japan, and I’m barely even halfway through blogging about it. But I’ve come, at last, to one of the highlights of the trip (I probably have too many “highlights” from the trip, but who’s counting and/or enforcing a limit? If you are – stop it. That was a rhetorical question anyway.)

Ok, so after I started writing this, and got a few paragraphs in, I realised I was doing that thing again whereby I write this long preamble, and don’t quite get to the point. So, originally, I was planning to skim over the events of February 9th, and get onto our visit to Mt Fuji (which was the aforementioned highlight), but looks like that’s not gonna happen in this post. Even if you’ve enjoyed reading about my Japan trip so far, feel free to skip this one, and wait for the Mt Fuji post (hopefully coming up very soon). Continue reading

61 minutes

On Saturday evening, I went for a run around my local park (which is more like a network of parks linked together by a creek and a cycling/walking path that runs along it) and the surrounding neighbourhood. It is probably the best run that I’ve ever done – it’s at least the best run I’ve done in the last few years. I was pretty chuffed (I’m still quite chuffed) to complete 10.1km in under 61 minutes.

I don’t think I’ve actually run 10km since the last time I did Bridge to Brisbane (which was back in 2013). Well, actually, I might’ve done a couple of 10km runs in the intervening time, but certainly not many. Maybe I got to 8km a few times? I am passionate about running, but I never really bothered to properly keep track of these things. (It’s not about the numbers, really.)

But I do know that, in recent months, most of the runs I’ve done have been about 5-6km. That distance takes about half an hour, or a bit more, and has generally satisfied my need to run. However, since signing up for the Bridge to Brisbane fun-run (B2B) again this year, I needed to step this up. For so long, I’ve been telling myself that I’m probably more suited to shorter distances; running 10km would be too much. Maybe I told myself that I just didn’t have the time or energy to run so far, and then maybe I started believing it. Continue reading

big shoes to fill

I really want to write about my run last night, but I need to post this first because it’s kind of the backstory. You can read all the boring details about my run next time (or not).

My workplace decided to enter a team into the Bridge to Brisbane fun run this year. For those unfamiliar with the race (i.e. you’re not from Brisbane or never lived in Brisbane over a winter), B2B gives you the option of doing a 5km and 10km course, which you can either run or walk. I’d been tossing up between the 5km and 10km options because I haven’t run 10km in a very, very long time, but I know I can do a pretty decent 5km run. The choice was then between protecting my pride, or taking on a challenge and pushing myself.

I’d like to say it was an easy choice, but I took at least a week and a lot of encouragement to commit to the 10km run. Well, there is actually a jogging option as well as running or walking, so I went with jogging. (What you choose isn’t overly important, it just allows the event organisers to get an idea of what time you might finish in, and hence allocate an appropriate starting time bracket.) Continue reading

meditations – superfluity

Of all the lessons, revelations, advice and guiding principles that I’ve gotten from Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations there’s probably one that’s been most influential. Well, I actually hesitate to say that because I don’t always follow it, and because I’ve taken so much from reading the book that it’s really hard to pinpoint which one singular passage I think about the most; but if I had to choose one, this would be it:

Most of what we say and do is unnecessary: remove the superfluity, and you will have more time and less bother. … And the removal of the unnecessary should apply not only to actions but to thoughts also: then no redundant actions either will follow.
– Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, Book 4, Chapter 24

Continue reading