Monday, March 23, 2009

Air Salonpas

That. Was. A. fckn. Task.

First of all, I would like to thank all the spectators who were voluntarily handing out chocolates/candies/sweets throughout the whole marathon course. Personally I think the Tokyo Marathon committee gave out way too little refreshments, so additional help from the public was truly a lifesaver. Second, shout out to Erica, Lily, Charles, NOT hanna, NOT jeremy and masaya, my mom's friend, and my Mom for coming out. I swear every random moment I saw someone I knew--whether it was my mom or Brian on the other side of the course, it pushed me to run faster than where I was currently--so props to you guys.

5 hours and 52 minutes. Within that time, I peed, stopped and walked every time the Marathon committee handed out water/food, and posed for my mom's camera. I was also placed in the last starting block group, which forced us to start at least 10? minutes after the starting gunshot. So the Tokyo Marathon is about 26 miles = 42 km. For some odd reason the first 15 km was a b*tch and then from 20-30 km it was a breeze, where I was giving high fives to way too many strangers and smiling for no reason. AND THEN. and then, it started showering around 35 km then mad rain with rapid wind 40-42 km till ze end.

To keep my mind off the pain while running, I judged the other runners based on their appearance. Not cool? Let me elaborate. There were obviously a lot of runners dressed up in costumes from Spiderman to an Eggplant, but there was Santa Clause and Mrs. Clause. They ran as a couple with a elastic bracelet attached on their arms with the reason of being--the wife is blind. There was also a group of middle aged men, just running together and joking around with each other and to a lot of random spectators. And then there were 60-70 year old grandmas and grandpas just hauling ass, doing what they could. How? That was the kind of stuff going through my head during the course.

After somehow successfully getting back to my dorm, I was at the point where my body was screaming when I just had to walk to the bathroom.

But today?
2 words. = Air Salonpas

Friday, March 20, 2009

56281 out of 56299

Ok before I forget, remember how I compared Tokyo's recent weather to that children's book, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs?? WELL, THEY'RE MAKING IT INTO A MOVIE AND ITS COMING OUT FALL 2009!! YES, I'LL BE HOME!

And now the Real Ish...
The day is finally here. Tokyo Marathon 2009 is tomorrow--starting at 9:10 A.M. until 4:10 P.M. The course is crazy long, circling and winding through countless popular Tokyo spots. Something interesting...the Tokyo Marathon committee can only allow 30,000 runners and when internet applicants went over that number during the sign up period, all entrants were selected lottery style. So out of 30,000 I am listed as number 56281 out of 56299 under the non-athlete females. Yes, I am the last foreign person listed lol.

The Tokyo Marathon Expo completely hyped up the event, which has made us a lot more excited for it. There are a total of 5 UC EAP students running: 4 representing UC Irvine, and 1 from UC Santa Cruz. On top of that, they gave us hella. HELLA. free stuff during registration and at the expo...reminded me a lot of the States. Anyway, thanks to everyone who have been constantly reminding and asking me about my marathon training -____- you know who you are. Aaannnddd if you're in Tokyo, come out and watch us!!!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The Cure

rah! As mentioned earlier, I went to Hiroshima for the weekend, as well as Miyajima--an island right by Hiroshima. Everything about this 3 day trip was wonderful except the departure. Holy cow, so our shinkansen was set for 7 am which means we have to bounce out of our dorm by 6 am. The. Weather. Was. A. Bitch.
Our transparent umbrellas completely bent and went out of shape within 15 minutes of walking outside in the terrible mix of wind, rain, and grumpy gray clouds.

Food in Hiroshima is basically Okonomiyaki, but mos def no complaints on that. This city, like Nagasaki was also full of trolleys?/trams which made stops at countless historical areas. The Historical Museum was packed, PACKED with foreigners from all over the world. Other than that, this city was a great walking/strolling city.

Miyajima...Miyajima...taking the ferry to get there reminded me how easily I can get sea sick by just sitting in the opposite direction of the boat, ok anyway. THIS WAS THE FIRST DAY from the past 4-5 weeks where I had absolutely no stomach pains for the whole day. The weather was gorgeous, the town wasn't too cramped with tourists, the biking around was calming, the bambis were chill and cool, and the Momiji Manjyu was divine. THe whole environment just hits you with the fact that you're really in Japan. *Miyajima > Kyoto , I'm sorry. That's just how it goes.

The MoF*ckn Bridge at Iwakuni. It's titled the Kintai Kyo--Brocade Sash Bridge. Once again, the scenery just blew your mind away and let you know that you were for sure living and breathing in Japan.

Now back at home, things are honestly back to crap again. But that'll all be over when my legs break off my body after this Sunday's Tokyo Marathon.

Days until Marathon: 4
Days until I see my parents: 4 (yes, they are flying out and cheering me on)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

10 Days to Go

so I'm kinda mad right pretty furious. Maybe not the best time to blog, but I Do What I Want.

I will not get into detail of my current mood because adding stress and talking about it is Not something that my stomach needs at this moment. On a happier note, I am gonna peace out to Hiroshima/Miyajima this weekend with my R.A./friend from my dorm, Ayano. For my American readers, Hiroshima is the main Japanese city that was attacked by the atomic bomb during WW II. So w00t to that.

Last night when I came back from shopping with Erica (this girl is a curse when shopping), I found a colorful bag hanging on my door handle. Turns out, there was a bouquet of flowers inside...haha lemme explain. This past week I have been helping my RA with her application to study abroad in France, and she needed to turn in a Japanese, English, and French personal statement. She asked me to help on her English paper, and we really churned it and nailed it after lotsa drafts. So yeah, it was an extremely sweet way of saying thank you. Just an FYI, the only time I've gotten a bouquet of flowers my entire life was from my mom at the end of dance performances. Now you know how widely I was smiling when the flower surprise occurred.

Countdown: 10 more days until Tokyo Marathon
Number of hours I ran today: 2
Number of miles: I don't give a Hoot. (like 10)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


Since mid-summer when I first moved here, I have had deathly painful stomachaches which I always blamed on my period. Nah. Turns out I have had stomach ulcers from the clash of "foreign country syndrome" (from carolyn loo)and stress. To be exact, my first major one was in August with just homesick-ness and new individuals, and then a minor one in early December right after the Mita Festival with my dance circle. I guess the current one really got to me with a mixture of overwhelming amounts of unneeded packaged food consumption plus the dance circle. It has been going on and off for about a month now, but super heavy and hard hitting these past 2 weeks.

Along with my daily dose of Ester-C, Cod Liver Oil, and Zinc vitamins, I have 3 more pill friends to add, according to the doctor. THREE FCKN PILLS for a stomach problem built on stress that I brought on myself.
I'm gonna go shopping now, bye.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs

So this was my first mental image I had when I was walking back to my dorm in the horrendous weather. If you're still not going "ooooohh man I remember salivating on this book", let me help. Remember images of a huge pancake taking over roofs of houses, or hamburgers with chicken drumsticks falling like rain...yes, you're on the right track. This whole week has been raining cats and dogs here and when it rains, it Can pour.

On the other hand, I have about 2 weeks to play my music at my maximum volume, AND ALSO argue with my mom on skype with my normal voice tone. All of my neighbors have moved out--right side, left, front, diagonal, under, you call it. Until then, our dorm will get about 80 new residents at the end of March...from all ova da World. And thanks to them, our school is pushing back our school session start dates to mid-April with all the new student festivities, opening ceremony, etc.

Oh yea I forgot. Today me, Anna, and Brian went to Yokosukachuo (in Tokyo, but not. wtfunk?) and watch JADE's spring dance performance. From the time that I quit, I will say that they did helluvalot better than what I remember rolling my eyes to. (again, sorry) For those who know me well, you should be proud that I tried to make eye contact with everyone in the dance circle as much as possible. I wanted to let them know that there were no hard feelings, and I still was there to support them...aaanndd the reactions I got were cheerful and positive :)
One thing about growing up is that, you learn on your own how to appropriately depart from social situations right before it gets awkward. Do I love it? Well, do you? Yea now You're in an awkward situation. shoooot.

Hi, my name is Tina Tomomi Tsai and am a proud owner of 4 umbrellas since moving to Japan this past July. -___-