Monday, October 22, 2007

Some old pics and getting to know my couch

My mom uploaded a few old pictures after my old blog in response to my request. I'll only share a couple here due to the 'bad hair' that I seemed to chronically have between ages 6 and 23. The above is one of the oldest surviving pictures of me- aged 3 rocking out to "Chipmunk Rock" by the Captain and Tenile I believe. (I'm not sure why I have this in my mind that was the song I was listening too, it could be the fact, or just an artificial memory as I like to call them).
Here is the picture of me the winter after breaking my leg the first time. I heard that my recovery at that time was 8 - 10 weeks. Probably a bigger break, but I wasn't too surprised when the new doctor I went to the other day lengthened my expected recovery time to 6 weeks. But looking at that picture- holy crap- have you seen the movie Bad Santa? Because I'll be damned if that isn't Billy Bob Thornton working as Santa at the Seaway Mall. I wonder if they got robbed that year...?

So I had a soft week last week, with my business classes cancelled, just 2 home lessons, then the end of the week we started stepping up the work load with a couple of trips to ESL College (Though don't be fooled it's not a college- nor is it ESL... it's EFL okay, sorry Chris!). Next week is going to get more tough, me getting reacquainted with my old friend the train. But I have been trying to concentrate on getting lots of rest this week. Maybe a little too much? I think Ritsy was getting a bit annoyed, but she is awesome- been really helpful, I will step up my help around the place now too!
Well the couch I have been using for propping up the foot is usually the couch where the cats sleep. So you can imagine that times there are territorial challenges. The other day Lanma was so funny, she was sleeping on my side and kept stretching until she was almost sitting up straight. Funny girl. Well, one more day of rest then back to it! Maybe I'll shoot for one more posting before I get back to the busy schedule...

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

A funny thing happened the other day...

Wow, fall is here. The trees around the area are starting to sprout Mikans (also known as Mandarine oranges) and Persimmons and the weather is actually bearable now. Yep life couldn't get any better.

Except for the October curse.

Those who know me- know the story of when I was young (maybe 6 years old) on Halloween I ran into the side of a car and broke my leg. The part that still always cracks Ritsy up is that I was too scared to use crutches for whatever reason, so I walked around in the beginning with an old person's walker. Near the end though, I was on crutches. {Mother- if you read this can you scan the old picture of me with Santa clause in my cast?}

Some 29 years later, the October curse strikes again. I will have to document somewhere to beware in October of my 64rd year...

Sunday started harmlessly enough. I taught in the morning. I was quite proud of the handout I made for my Sunday class- studying haiku. I thought it would be easy for them get since it was a Japanese style of poem, and a great way to study counting syllables. Well it turned out to be tough for them to get, but sometimes we have to push the students, right? I digress....

After teaching, Chris called me up for a spot of basketball, which is quite a common activity for us on Sundays. So I met up with Pete and Chris and we saw that the usual crowd wasn't there, and we ended up playing a few games with a big crowd of guys from the Phillipines, nice guys and they played hard. Early in the third game, I was starting the playing and found that my check was easily fooled if I would stand with my back to him, protecting the ball and spin backwards into the lane to the hoop. While I was spinning though, my foot caught in an awkward position (maybe something related to the piece of my shoe that fell off earlier in the day) and instead of stopping I kept trying to twist my foot and I was met with an odd popping sound. Yep, that pop was the fracturing of my fibula. How lame to break your own leg without any contact or anything.
I planned on going back to work right away, but I realized that with a 4 week healing time, and my baby due in about 4 weeks, it's better to cut my financial losses a bit and try to get a head start recovering, so I asked for a couple of days off. Time/Life went ahead and got me the whole week off from the company classes, which will really help, once I start taking the trains to work it's going to be tough! Well, I saved the pictures for the end of the post to preserve the integrity of the story...
This is my leg, try not to look at the toes too closely...

And here is me resting on the couch, trying to heal quickly....

Monday, October 8, 2007

Adding an RSS feed in Firefox

Okay most people probably already know how to do this, but I think this was a pretty neat and easy way to check someone's blog. So I am making my first blog tutorial- how to add an RSS feed icon in Firefox.

1. In the View menu go to Toolbars, then make sure that the Bookmarks Toolbar is checked- it will provide a nice home for your RSS feeds.
2. When you are at a site with an RSS feed you will see an icon like in the above picture (click on the picture to get a larger view). Click on the icon, then select the option to add the site as a Live Bookmark.
3. You will get redirected to the feeds page, just select to Subscribe to the feed.
4. A box will popup where you can change where the bookmark gets saved and the name. By choosing the Bookmarks Toolbar Folder it will show up on the bookmarks toolbar.
5. Now you have a simple link that you can click on that will show you a list of all the latest posts, you can see if there is a new one that you haven't read (or quickly access an older post lightning quick).

There will work with any site that has an RSS feed. RSS means Really Simple Syndication by the way, which means that it is a very easy way to distribute your works quickly. So most news sites or regularly updated sites will include a feed for easy access to their sites. So, really- I'm not just teaching this to make it easier for people to come to my site, it is a great tool for any site!

Saturday, October 6, 2007

A New Post!

Call the kids in! Phone your friends! Hamamatsu Life has an update! A new posting! And the lead picture is a generic, unreferenced one, it must be time for one of Todd's miscellaneous ramblings entries! Wow!

Sorry: Yep, I don't know what's been going on, my posts have been a little too much spaced out lately. I guess this week I had two new classes which I usually get a bit stressed about especially when trying to teach a new textbook. I tend to think that in the end the classes always work out fine but if I don't get worked up for the classes, I won't do as good a job- so it may be part of my successful recipe (it's one of my theories anyway). Well even though I haven't been typing in my blog, I often think about what to talk about when I am driving, so this is probably the by product of those thoughts!

Baby Talk: Ritsy finished work this week, and is now on Maternity Leave. I think it's great that she will have a month to relax now, it's going to get really busy for both of us, especially for her in about a month. And wow- that really feels real now- one month away from baby arriving. We actually heard the baby's sex now- but I'm not going to mention it here just yet- I want to personally tell a few people first. We already have a baby bed- thanks to Kouji-san, and we bought a new mattress and blankets for it. We also bought a stroller at a used goods shop and a car seat. So I think that is a good start. I even have been trying to read the What to Expect in the Baby's first year to be prepared for the challenges ahead. Progress is slow...

Baby Talk part 2: I watched the movie Knocked Up the other day and had a good chuckle. Of course the movie isn't for everyone- very adult themes like drugs, etc... Though in the movie the baby comes about thanks to a one night stand- the actual pregnancy and everything after that was somewhat relevant to me, so it was actually good to watch for my situation. Especially when they showed the picture of the baby crowning, that is something I have to work myself up to...

Death Hill: One of my new classes this week was in Morimachi(actually both of them were), which means that for the first time in a long time I had to go out in the direction where I had my accident earlier this year. Well, the old road is now gone, they built a new, much safer road through the hills. It is a gradual incline with a much lower apex and very good sight lines- the drive feels much safer now! Good job government of Hamamtsu!
Not Farewell, it's see you later : Ya it was kind of a sad feeling on Tuesday. Some of my regular students for my Tuesday night class that have been attending for around 2 years will not be joining next semester. So it felt like goodbye, though I hope that we will all stay in touch as they were not only great as students but we also had some great talks and a couple of fun times at Josh's place. Well if you guys are reading this, thanks again!
Lanma: Asked me to put her picture in my blog again, so there it is.

I will try to be more on top of posting again! Thanks for reading!

Monday, October 1, 2007

Mac and Me

Last week, Mak made the trek out with his new girlfriend, Shizuka to Hamamatsu. He actually had planned on coming around the last week of August, but we kept bumping the date as we couldn't co-ordinate our schedules. As they were coming to Hamamatsu for the first time, we thought it might be a good idea to partake in Unajuu. Unajuu is a lot like Unagi donburi (broiled eel rice bowl) but instead of being served in a bowl, it comes in a square box (called ojuu). Ritsy did a little research and found Fujita - a nice little restaurant in Hamamatsu located oddly enough next to a hotel called Canada Hotel. It didn't really look Canadian to me....
I was surprised to hear that Mak had a lady in his life as when I saw him back in April he was a single man. Apparently he and Shizuka had gone to the same Junior High School but didn't really know each other back then. He was surprised to see that he was invited to his Junior high school reunion as he attended for a short time before moving to Canada and the U.S. Well he met Shizuka at the reunion and the impression was that they seem to hit it off pretty well. They have many things in common, they like sleeping in, they both aren't working anymore and... well they live in Tokyo...?
Who the heck is this attractive couple?
It seemed that time burned up and next thing I knew we were parting ways. They wanted to retire in a romantic setting near Hamanako ( I guess) so didn't take us up on our offer to stay over. It was a great night and very delicious dinner- I hope they come out again soon!