1 Season Down

1 Season Down

Now that winter has officially ended, it’s time to look forward to what the other 3 remaining seasons have in store for me and my friends this 2016. But before I do just that, I’d like to write a few sentences for the season that has just gone by. The season I like the most, even though it’s the one responsible for most of my broken bones.
Continue reading “1 Season Down”

Glimmer

Glimmer

I don’t like organizing events. It is stressful, entails a lot of work, and above all nobody seems to be satisfied. It’s a thankless job.

It is statements like these that give event organization its notoriety. I will not refute the fact that it is a stressful endeavor, because it is. You have to anticipate and consider a lot of things, decide on a lot of details on your own, while at the same time factor in the requests and opinions of the attendees. You also have to be very detailed, and at the same time be really brief in dispensing information.

Continue reading “Glimmer”

Here’s To A Great 2013 Snowboarding Season

To say that I love snowboarding is an understatement. My winter sport preparation starts not just before winter comes, but as soon as the winter season ends. I clean and repair my snow wear and gear, I save money, I even plan which snow resort to visit next season . But this season, the main objective changed. It changed from wanting to snowboard on every challenging terrain there is and doing all sorts of crazy tricks, to teaching beginners how to snowboard, so that they too may enjoy the sport like I do. You can say that I’m recruiting future snowboarding buddies.

What I love about teaching “snow-noobs” is their reaction when they successfully complete their objective. Be it being able to stand-up on a board, do the reverse falling leaf, or the most popular and most important and most enjoyable maneuver of them all, the S-curves. Some of them shriek, well okay, most of them shriek with excitement. Some of them simply ask me, “What’s next?” It varies from person to person, but the end result, the sense of fulfillment, is the same regardless. Continue reading “Here’s To A Great 2013 Snowboarding Season”

Snow Miracle – Day 1, Part 1 of 2

March 17, 2012. I was panting very hard. Walking on top of snow and ice is not easy when you don’t have the proper shoes for it. We, all 6 of us, were on our way to Zaou Central Lodge, to check-in, change into our boarding attire, and have some much-needed breakfast. I was hungry, and geographically lost at that moment. I looked back to see if my friends were still following me and I was alarmed to see that we were missing three. They were further behind, taking their sweet time pointing their shooters at inanimate white objects that seem trivial to my earnest eyes. I wanted to get to the hotel as quickly as possible. I wanted so much to start boarding. Bad. After a few more minutes of wading through 3cm of snow, there it was, our hotel, in front of the gondola, less than 60 seconds away. Color me blown. I was ecstatic. Continue reading “Snow Miracle – Day 1, Part 1 of 2”

Slush

Slush

March 10, 2012. Sky Valley Ski Resort.
It was 6 AM when I woke up. I was extremely hungry. I checked the tea bottle in front of me for contents. It still had some left. I drank it to moisten my mouth and lessen the rumblings from within. I put on my glasses to check our location but couldn’t quite figure out where we were. The bus had been parked since 4AM. I fiddled with my phone to pass time, the back-light illuminating the adjacent seats.

It’s now 7AM. Other peoples started waking up. The sunlight seeping in through the crevices between the windows and the curtains. It was hot. They probably had the heaters cranked up to the highest level. I was getting impatient.

7:20AM They started to draw the front curtains back. I felt a sigh of relief. We were where we were supposed to be all along. The sun is up, there was snow all around, and all was right again. I grabbed my bag and proceeded to the least crowded locker room to change into my snowboard attire, red top and black pants with white boots. I put the stuff that I won’t be using anytime soon inside the rental locker, grabbed my board and went outside to look for my friends. I called Tiffany to ask about their whereabouts, which was at the food court upstairs, before proceeding to where they were. The resort does not open until 8:10AM, and they don’t start serving food until 8AM. I had some beef with that since I was extremely hungry, but all I could do was wait nonetheless.

I was scouting the area for some pretty boards to look at and saw one that had stickers of Ski-Resorts posted on it. And then I had the idea of doing just the same thing, starting with this one. I went over to the ticket desk, waited until they opened up and talked to 2 elder ladies behind the counter.
すみません、チケットの交換ですが。
(Goodmorning. I want to exchange these for lift tickets.)
はい。8枚ですね。少々お待ちくださいませ。
(Alright. Just hold on a moment while I get 8 tickets.)
あ、後ですね、本リゾートのシールも欲しいんですが販売していますか。
(Also, do you by any chance sell those resort stickers here?)
あ、それはそれはも終わっちゃって・・・
(I’m so sorry but we already stopped selling those…)
ん。。。そうなんですか。残念ですね。
(Is that so… Too bad.)
あ、ちょっと待って、在庫まだるかも知らないので、ちょっと確認しておきますわ。
(Hold on. Let me just check if we have some stickers left.)
お、ありがとうございます。
(Really? Thank you so much.)
***数分後(A few minutes later)***
やっぱりまだありますね。これあげますから。
(Today’s your lucky day! We still have this left. I’m giving it to you.)
お!本当ですか。ありがとうございました!!!
(Oh wow! Thanks!)

I posted the sticker onto my board, distributed the lift tickets to my friends and went straight for the lifts. I was excited. This was my first time boarding after the accident last January. Went up 2 lifts, and like a kid inside a candy or a toy store, I hurriedly fastened my board, and started sliding down the slopes.

I was almost ecstatic. To be snowboarding again, it was pure bliss.

Granted the snow is not as good as it was back in January, since the hill consisted of 1-part compacted snow(almost like ice) and 1 part slush, I still had so much fun. I tested myself to see if I can still pull off the stunts I did prior the accident. I tried tricks like the buttered pretzel, some butters, and spins and I still was able to pull them off, if not better. Also, I believe, I’ve just captured the proper feeling when taking off on kickers. Finally! I think. I will test this theory next weekend when we go to 蔵王(Zaou) for the final Boarding trip of the season.

God is good for still allowing me to go snowboarding for this season.

Mixing Business with a Lot of Pleasure

March 9, 2012. I was having a hard time getting out of bed. Pollen season is in full swing and it’s affecting my capability to breathe. My eyes were all swollen up and itchy, and my ears are starting to get fuzzy as well. I tossed and turned insde my futon. I needed to do 2 things today, first, go to my opthalmologist and get some much needed anti-histamine medication. Second, go to city-hall and register my new address. It was just 7:30 AM. Mustering all the strength I have in me, I got out of bed and headed straight to the living room. I sat on my couch, turned on the TV, and tuned in to MTV. Nothing says “wake-me-up” like music.

Little did I know that it was a double-edged sword. Time had passed by so fast that when I looked at the clock on my iPhone, it was already 9:30 AM. I was supposed to leave the house an hour earlier. Hurriedly I got dressed, brushed my teeth, washed my face, grabbed my keys and ran out the door. It was raining. This complicated things even further. [Click here for details of what occurred next.]

— Time Warp —

I arrived at APA Hotels in Honmachi, Osaka. I felt so relieved when I put down my snowboarding equipment which I had brought with me all the way from Kanto. It’s not that heavy, but the longer it stayed on my back, the more it seemed to me like it was.

Now for the business part of this trip, I attended the quarterly meeting at our Osaka office. It went way better than I thought it would. Usually it’s all boring reports after the admin and recruitment announcements. However, this time, we had an ongoing project, and our group, called 2CooL, met immediately after the announcements. We discussed about developing apps for smartphones. We have not decided yet on what platform to use, but I have a strong feeling we’ll be going the Android route. I plugged in some ideas of mine as well. And as soon as it started, the business part of this trip… was done!

Yay! for pleasure. I went straight back to my hotel, and tried to sleep from 18:00 – 21:30. We were supposed to take the 24:20 bus headed for SkyValley Ski Resorts. I changed into my undergarments to get more comfortable while trying to sleep but mid-way through I got pretty hungry. I called up my friend, who was staying at the room next to mine, and asked if he wanted to grab some dinner at the nearby curry place. Luckily, he was feeling pretty hungry himself so we went. I’ve never eaten at that restaurant before and I can’t even remember its name but the curry was really good! Probably one of the best I have ever had here in Japan. The sauce had just the right amount of flavor and spice. I was pretty satisfied with it.

I went back to the hotel to try and squeeze in some more Zzzs and at 21:30, I got up, and took a bath. I stayed submerged for almost 15 minutes before calling it quits with the tub. I took my time prepping up since it was just 22:00 and the train I intend to catch does not leave until 23:49. After almost two hours I headed towards our meeting place at Shin-Osaka. I went to the central exit and at the bottom of the stairs I saw three of my friends, Pink, Rolex and Ritchie. They were eating some bentos from the nearby convenience store. Lanny, Torrey and Tiffany arrived soon after I did. We boarded the bus at 24:10, waited for the announcements to finish and called it a night. We, all of us, needed to rest in preparation for the following day of fun-filled activities under the sun (or so I thought).