Tom and I run our first 15km

Great day today. It started, in the beautiful autumnal morning sunlight, with Tom and I doing our first ever 15km run. This is a major achievement – I’ve never been a runner, and never would have thought that this year I’d be able to run 9.3 miles non-stop (ok, so I did stop briefly for […]

Mumbai, my job, and babymaking

I don’t think I could ever get bored with life. There’s just too much going on. For a start, there’s events in the news. I don’t follow the news religiously, but I have recently subscribed to the Guardian feed on my iPhone – I scroll through the headlines on my way home to keep abreast […]

How much does a university education cost these days?

I can tell you, because today I got a statement from the student loans company. This is the total of four years of loans that have to be repaid – it excludes all the (non-repayable) grants that paid my tuition fees. That’s this much in a few other currencies: It is increasing on a monthly […]

Join me on my morning jog

As of today, I’m offering Mumblers the opportunity to join me on my morning jog. Yes, you too can come to Komozawa Koen, enjoy the sights of the running track, go faster, go slower, go uphill, go downhill …and all without breaking a sweat. Courtesy of (what else but) the iPhone. Courtesy of this amazing […]

Chasing Bubbles all weekend

It’s been a great weekend. A bit manic at times, but thoroughly enjoyable, and productive too. I’ve had two private lessons, spent a couple of hours taking over 300 photos in Yoyogi park (the vast majority of which I’ve yet to develop – will save that treat for later in the week – photos in […]

This and that all over the place

As usual, this post will probably be all over the place. There’s so many things I’ve wanted to write about, each wanting it’s own mumble, but I can’t see that happening for a while. Here’s what’s on my mind tonight in any case. ANKI My learning is taking off all over again with Anki – […]

Overly content?

A reoccurring theme for discussion in my head is one that revolves around being content. You see, I believe that it is important to be content with today’s life, because there is no tomorrow. And thus, I generally feel very content. Yet, I can feel that this feeling of contentness is perhaps holding me back, […]

Back on track

Mondays, my “day off” are fast becoming the busiest days of the week as I try and pack in everything that’s been put off from the other six days due to time issues. Today’s been good though. I’ve successfully trialled a new cake, washed the carpet, done another load of washing, tidied up, planned for […]

The straightest line in the world

I think it had to be the straightest line I’d ever seen painted on a road. I found it in Shin Kiba, on one of the man-made islands in Tokyo Bay. Here’s a satellite image of the place it was taken, as I know you are desperate to see my squatting pose. See how it […]

A peek inside our mansion

A few people have been asking to see our house – and today I finally got around to taking a few shots. The view from the front door. Our flat is basically comprised of two rooms: a kitchen / dining room, and a living / bedroom. There’s also a tiny bathroom, and a separate loo, […]

Don’t unchi

Recent breakthroughs in Brainy Animal Research Kommunications technology (or BARK for short) has enabled residents in Tokyo’s Meguro-ward to enroll their dogs in new reading and writing classes. The move is part of an effort to educate the canine community in street manners – notably those connected with unchi (poos). Here we see one of […]

Please do it at a pub

What I want to know if why has the salary man replaced his eye balls with golf balls? (This is one in a series of posters on the Tokyo Subway encouraging good manners. See the whole series here)

Faulty Nuts

It’s worth complaining in Japan. Last week, we bought some butter peanuts. They were very nice …apart from two of them which seemed to be kind of burnt in the middle. I didn’t really think much of it, but *Twinkle* insisted that we send the remaining few peanuts back to the manufacturer. So we did. […]

How to regain inches lost to shrinkage – no chemicals required

Last week, I put my Dry Clean Only trousers in the washing machine. I didn’t think anything of it – labels are there to be ignored, right? Surely, being washed in a washing machine is one of the funnest times in a pair of trousers’ life. Who am I to deny them that pleasure. I […]

The fragility of health

I’m reminded tonight of the relative fragility of our health. Following a week of intense activity (otherwise known as ‘Overdoing it’ or ‘being a Tame’), dad is back in hospital with continuous angina attacks. I don’t know the details – should find out in the morning.  Another family that I’m very close to is also […]

The Exercise Project

This morning’s short jog, minus the first section where I was trying to get the GPS on the iPhone to work. Did a restart in the end.Have you tried regular exercise over a prolonged period of time? I think most people probably have. For me though, it’s a first. It’s still early days. The jogging-three-times-a-week […]

Japanese lesson, and cake

Been a funny day today. In some ways a little frustrating, as I spent about 4 hours trying to do the simplest bit of coding in MS Office Access, but failing. I’m hoping I have an early morning breakthrough tomorrow as I have every time I’ve run into a difficult problem with it so far. […]

People Change Politics

[Apologies for the reposting. Trying out some new blogging software on my iPhone] There are some cynics who believe that we are powerless to bring about massive change. I would strongly disagree with that. …as would Friends of the Earth UK. Message to supporters: Together we’ve done it! A huge thank you to everyone who […]

Yay Obama!

[Watch Obama’s victory speech in full on the BBC] What an historic day. A day I am very happy to be alive and witnessing. Bloomin’ marvellous. I’ve been looking at photos of reactions around the world for the last hour. Reading the editorials, learning about Obama’s background. It’s clear that a lot of the world […]

Why I’m happy Obama will be president in a few hours from now

Wow. Kinda feeling ecstatic tonight. Been reading the news about the US election, and getting very excited. Whilst having Obama as president doesn’t necessarily mean huge changes for the better in US policy (such the entire defence budget being redirected towards peaceful solutions / humanitarian projects / environmental protection), it does give me hope. For […]

Brandon Steep hit the shelves at HMV Japan

It’s so good to see your friends doing well. The Kirk family have been good friends of mine for about 20 years. My trip to Islay (Scotland) to visit them 17 years ago was probably my first ever ‘big’ trip somewhere by myself. Later, they were kind enough to let me live with them for […]

My dad plays God

Photo courtesy of John Dinnen He’s back on the stage, this time playing God in a ‘Modern Mystery Play‘. Not quite the image I was brought up with – shows how times change 🙂 The reviews are now coming in, and by all accounts it was a sterling performance.  Well done dad.