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We haven’t done any weapons training for aikido class lately because of the exam preparations so I decided to use it as a bokken to practice the basic movements.  I did it outside since I didn’t want to suffer the consequences of accidentally hitting something inside the house.  

It probably wasn’t a very good idea though.  The moment I started, our dogs joined in.  I forgot that sticks meant playtime for them.  Not in the yey-let-me-fetch-the-stick type of playtime, but more of hooray-its-the-bad-guy-with-the-stick-from-protection-training-let’s-rough-house.

So much for practice, oh well.

During Aikido training, I had to be uke for our sensei.  That was the first time he performed a number of techniques on me without holding much back. Normally he’s softer because I’m a beginner.  He did everything so fast that I couldn’t keep up.  I barely kept myself from falling the wrong way.  The whole time, I was thinking how that was probably how it felt like to get beaten up.  I had visions of The Hulk swinging Loki around (although that’s an exaggeration).  

That got me thinking.  If someone with technique as good as his attacked me, I wouldn’t be able to defend myself.  I would be totally helpless.  I’m going to have to work harder if I want to be able to at least match the “flow.”  I have a long, long way to go.

By the way, I took the exam for 4th kyu a few days ago.  It was nerve-wracking.  We did all the basic techniques in suwari waza and tachi waza.  I know I didn’t give my best performance; I messed up on gyu waza and some of my ukemi.  It’s really annoying how the technique is inside your head and then all that knowledge suddenly disappears just as you’re about to execute it.  Mental block.  The worst thing.  

Still, I’m going to receive my new belt soon.  Hooray! 

Be warned, I’m going to complain about my life in the paragraphs that will follow.  Please stop reading if this kind of thing upsets you.


I woke up with the flu today. I felt so bad.  I don’t think I was in the right mind to go to work at all.  I wore both my earrings on the same ear (I have two piercings on the left one) and walked around the hospital a few times before noticing.  I probably looked like crap considering how I was also having a bad hair day.

I also did not receive my first salary as it was promised to me.  I know whose fault it is that it happened.  And it most certainly isn’t mine.  They told me I had to wait until the 15th of the next month.  I’m upset because I’m running low on funds, and I don’t want to borrow money or touch my savings.  This means an even more extreme form of budgeting for the next two weeks.

After work I decided to treat myself to Baker’s Fair diced hopia, which I loved as a kid (I was hoping for the comforting nostalgia of my childhood and all that).  It was an unpleasant surprise to find out that the quality of their hopia had plunged (so sue me, cybercrime law enthusiasts). It was nothing like the hopia I used to eat.  The outer covering/crust tasted like pancakes and it was slightly burnt.  Whoever heard of hopia that tasted like pancakes?  I don’t have anything against pancakes but it totally overpowered the mongo filling and made me so, so sad.

Lastly, out of sheer idiocy, I checked my mail before going to bed.  I discovered that I had been called out on a few mistakes that I made on the minutes of one of the meetings that I attended.  It’s really embarrassing.  I feel like a total rookie.

And that’s why I’m still up writing this.  Remind me never to check my email before sleeping.


I went back to Aikido class after skipping for more than a week.  I got the biggest surprise when I saw an unfamiliar face walking with my sempais when I arrived.  It turns out that the founder of our dojo is back from Japan (although he’s Italian).  I heard that he was known for being a very strict instructor, and it was my first time meeting him.  No one told me he was coming.  Argh.  

Imagine my horror, coming from barely 4 hours of sleep and rusty from not practicing.  I was really unprepared.  It was a good thing that I took my sensei’s advice and arrived early.  

It went better than I expected, though.  He stuck to the basic techniques and I got corrected twice.  I didn’t finish the class because I had to leave early for work.  It would’ve been nice to have been there up until the end— I’m curious as to what else he was going to teach.  Oh well.

So… that’s all for now.  Good night everyone.  🙂

Quite a lot of things have happened since I last talked about my life in general.  That bit that I said about using the stationary bike while watching TV?  I’ve only done that once.  Hah.  So much for exercise!

I think I have a valid reason for not working out, though.  My mom was hospitalized for a “rare endometrial tumor,” which doctors suspect might be malignant.  She went through surgery to have it removed, and thank God that my worst fears stayed as fears and did not become reality.  We finally got the biopsy results and it was benign.  They’re still going to do more tests to be absolutely sure, and I hope everything is going to turn out normal.  

I’m so glad that everything went smoothly.  We all put a lot of prayers and hope into it.  I went for a peek in the OR to check on how things were going, and I saw my mom’s surgeon (who just finished the procedure) about to have breakfast, looking very relaxed, without a sweat on his brow or a hint of stress on his face.  He had a fast-paced approach to recovery.  The IV was removed the morning following the surgery and he advised sitting up and a little ambulation.  On the third post-operative day, my mom looked like she didn’t go through an operation at all (except for the slow shuffling gait due to pain).  We spent 5 days in the hospital.

The whole ordeal made me miss taking care of people.  I don’t consider myself as a nurturing or motherly kind of person at all, but there’s something very calming about caring for someone. I missed helping people up from beds, giving bed baths, and even the simple act of putting on their socks for them.  

Anyway, the day that my mom was discharged from the hospital, I was hired to work under another hospital’s clinical IT team.  I just finished my first week and I already have several projects assigned to me, hooray!  Things are going a little slow but I’ve been told to expect a busy schedule for next week.  I’m really enjoying it so far.  

I love our work environment.  One of my old classmates from college started working on the same day that I did, but in a different department.  His office is just at the opposite end of our hallway.  There’s always a lot of laughter in the hallways; most of the employees seem really happy.  I don’t know if I can say the same for the people on the floors and wards, but I hope I can go around and meet some of the nurses soon.

I want to say that I’m now out of shape but I have never been in shape in the first place, harharhar.  :-p

Despite being the least likely person to be called “sporty,” this year I want to be physically fit and healthy.  I decided to become more active since I stopped working in the hospital.  It was my only form of exercise until I quit (I can guarantee that you will lose pounds by being on your feet for more than 8 hours a day with no breaks/meals.  I kind of miss it sometimes).  

Anyway, I have been taking Aikido classes thrice a week since March, and I walk everywhere that’s possible to get to on foot.  That’s really the farthest that my exercise goes and I realize it’s not enough.  I don’t have any set goals except to improve muscle tone and shed some inches off my waist.  I want to go to a gym, but it’s boring and it costs money.

In addition to the classes and walking, here’s what I’m going to do until I come up with a better plan:

  1. Do some stretching after I wake up each morning
  2. Use the stationary bike for an hour every other day (I moved it in front of the TV so I can watch a couple of episodes of whatever show I have on hand)
  3. Go jogging in the park while my dad trains our dogs on Sundays, and if I’m lucky, on other days if my friends are available
  4. Use the treadmill on days that I don’t use the stationary bike.  I am ashamed to admit this, but the only people who have used the treadmill here at home are not people at all, but our dogs
  5. Lift some very very light weights, which I don’t have at the moment

In order for all of this to happen, I have to sleep as early as 9PM and wake up at 5 or 6AM.  It feels almost impossible.  Good luck to me.

So my brother got the Big Breakfast at McDonald’s yesterday (which wasn’t big at all), and McDonald’s had the funniest design on the styrofoam. I don’t know if they’re trying to be more Asian, but there is a paper chicken instead of a paper crane, a bowl of rice, a gravy boat, and Ronald McDonald slam-dunking some trash into a wastebasket. Endless amusement.

Does anyone else feel dizzy after a few minutes of playing Silent Hill Downpour?  For some reason, the game makes me mildly nauseous, and it’s not because of the atmosphere or visual elements in the game environment.  It’s really weird, this is the first time I’ve felt dizzy when playing a game.  I think it might be the way the camera view changes.  Also, it feels likes it’s being done on purpose, especially in the Otherworld.  Weird motion sickness and a headache.  So I went and turned the system off and slept, and I still feel queasy.

Look at this circular bookshelf above the room.  This writing studio was designed by Travis Price Architects for Wade Davis.  The sunlight coming in from what looks like a sky light is perfect.  I’d love to work in this room and take a break just by looking up and being mesmerized by the sight of all those books.

Wade Davis Writing Studio by Travis Price Architects

But this day made up for it.  Small things go a long way.  I’m still blessed 🙂


This is the personal blog of teskaraptor aka bananatree. Yes that's me, a 20-something nurse working in the IT field.
If you ask me to choose one word to describe myself, I would choose "weird."

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