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Sunday, May 29, 2011

The Physical and the Spiritual

Just came back from a "Power 2" yoga class, which was (as name suggests) very physical but not as physically demanding as some of the other Power 2 classes I took before. This one initially focused on the breathing -- to expand the chest and to warm up the body -- before moving onto back bending and twisting. I LOVE doing the backward bend and the twist because these actions/asanas (in my mind anyway) help "loosen" up my lower back (the ligaments around the pelvis harden as we get older -- the fact many of us sit in front of a computer all day doesn't help). So in every pose I focused on the "target areas" and play around with these subtle and minute moments ... the only problem I encountered during my practice (as always) was the shortness of breaths. It is my inability to hold a breath that makes me get out of the more challenging poses fast. So, it's certainly something I need to work on in the coming year (just celebrated my third year of yoga practice!!) Anyway, after the class I felt energised and grabbed a salad to boost my feel-good meter. Now, as I sit in front of my computer at least I feel my lower back has been worked and exercised.

When I got home I received an article from a friend that talks about dying. It's a bit morbid but it's a subject that has been lingering on my mind lately. It (the topic and death itself) creeps up as people grow older and when those around us - family, friends, colleagues - begin to die (I actually lost a good friend who died when he was 19 ~ that was traumatic). And I don't know which is harder -- children losing their parents when they are too young to even remember or adults watching their loved ones die. Mortality is a fact of life. That is why it is SO, SO important for us to focus on just living. Remember to live the moment - savouring and relishing every breath, every second. And you can always start NOW~!    

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Little Free Time

Have been so busy at work lately I barely have time to blog or, worse, practise yoga! Returned to the mat thia afternoon (after a week) and it already felt a little foreign. A stretch here, a twist there, and I could hear my bones crackling. Right knee still sore from a recent bout of arthritis. But it was business as usual with the Perfect Human Specimen, our Core Master, who got us groaning in pain in no time. Actually the class itself wasn't too bad (could have been a lot worse) as the flow wasn't particularly challenging, it was the repetition that drained the energy (lots of boat pose and vertical split again and again) ... Today, I worked on jumping forward from downdog. Sometimes I can get my hips really high, giving me a gracious soft landing, but most of the time I just hop forward with knees and legs bend... it's all in the mind because the higher the hips go, the greater the fear of flipping over and crash landing.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

An Upgraded Version

Phew! Got my PSP back from the repairs and it's working fine -- much better, in fact -- now. Have to give it to the Sony repairs department for being so incredibly efficient and thorough. The tech guy actually called me up to get more details about those "freezes" that I had when playing Dissidia 012 Duodecim ... of course, he couldn't find anything wrong with the machine or the game (you notice electronic gadgets only break down at home and never at the repairs?) but was good enough to 1) upgrade the firmware and 2) change the disc scanner and 3) even change the screen protector. So now my Dissidia game runs as smoothly as a baby's bottom. Fingers crossed it won't freeze on me again.



NO yoga this weekend because all my fav teachers at the studio are either away or have left. But will do some stretches at home to keep the body, hmm, loosen.

PS BWAH ... PSP just hanged once more ... have bought a new memory card, if that doesn't work, I really am through with this ...


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Dissidia ~ the Saga Continues ...

Just when I thought I could now sit back and enjoy the new game ... NO! The wretched thing hangs!!! It started when I completed Vaan's mission, and a couple of times during Laguna's story. By the time I got to Yuna (quite a kickass character but what on earth is she wearing?), it was blank screen almost every time I switched it off and back on again. And I got the game less than a week ago. Initially I thought it was just a problem with the UMD ... but when I took it to the repairs, they took my PSP in is well. Now, shouldn't they be just giving me a new one??

Is that a wedding dress?
Been busy lately (other than just faffing around with the Dissidia game) but managed to squeeze in a couple of Yin classes this week. My left hip is SO tight am having an anatomical/emotional imbalance (the hips are known to retain negative emotions such as frustration, anger, sadness and confusion). And it was particularly hard to stay in the deeper poses that needed opening up the left hip. But all the deep stretching means I am getting uninterrupted deep sleep every night ...

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Yet Another Version

This is INSANE! First I bought the Japanese edition of Final Fantasy Dissidia 012 [duodecim] (see earlier post) for PSP, which was great until I started to level up and I had no idea what I was doing or supposed to be doing because all the instructions are in Japanese (I thought I could manage when I bought the game cos I'd already played the first instalment of this title series). Then I bought the English version, which was great until the voice over began to really bug me. They make Lightning (fav character cos she possesses many different abilities) sound like a real stroppy cow. "Who are you watching?!?!" she demands (in a stern tone and American accent) every time I press the attack button (and I frankly think the more appropriate translation should be: "What are you looking at?", which makes more sense but that would probably make her sound even more of a moody moo-moo).

WHO ARE YOU WATCHING?


Today, I bought the PERFECT version which has Japanese voiceover with English (or Chinese) subtitles as well as an English menu. I mean, great, I actually bought the same bloody game three times. I blame it on Sony PlayStation though. Before I bought the English edition, I actually went to their store to ask whether the super duper version was coming out and they said NO. This week, the game went on the shelves.

 Just as well that I didn't really get into the game with the two earlier versions ... or else it'd have to play the same mission over and over and over again and that would have diven me nuts even though I am such a HUGE Dissidia fan!!!

Yoga-wise, this week has been a good week -- even though the Perfect Human Specimen's Core class was as Hellish as ever. BUT at least the workout really works (I can feel the sore in the core - gee, it even rhymes - as I type... maybe I should rechristen his class the Sore Class). All the practising also makes me sleep better at night, which is always a bonus.

And finally, met this rather fun-loving 69-year-old woman who told me that she (finally) found love about a decade ago, after having had a series of husbands/lovers/abortions. So it kinda makes sense that her ultimate partner/ soulmate should be another woman. 

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Plenty of P(SP)-ing and Wii-ing

Sorry, bad gag ... this entry is not about having a bad bladder but gaming. Yesterday I finally got my hands on the special PSP edition of Dissidia 012 [duodecim] Final Fantasy, which came with the handheld. But it is not the Chinese/English/Japanese all-roll-into-one version that I heard about a couple of months ago ... in fact, this version doesn't seem to exist as even people at Sony don't know much about it, which is supposed to be on "limited release" coming Tuesday. Which is also very strange. I already have the Japanese version so it doesn't really matter. So what I've done is to play my (save file) game (which is already 99 per cent completed/unlocked) on the new machine while storing the English version away ... the voice over is pretty bad. That is why I wanted the, err, the non existing version in the first place cos it'd have Japanese voices, Chinese/English subtitles and system menu in English, which would have been totally perfect. Oh well, never mind. It's only a game.


Yesterday I also bought a Wii for my dad who got addicted playing those virtual games at my brother's place last week. The fact he got thrashed by my six-year-old niece in tennis made him the more determined to get a Wii for himself so he can practise on it at home. But before anyone could jump up and down in front of the telly screen like raving lunatics, somone would need to set up the console first and WHO was left with this tedious task? ME. The fact all the on-screen setup instructions were in Japanese didn't help. Still, after an hour of trial and errors I finally had all the FOUR handsets connected ~ and it's quite appropriate that, on Mother's Day, my mom should be thrashing my dad in the table tennis game. Maybe my dad is just really bad at these games...

I noticed at the games store that Wii actually has a yoga game/program ... interesting ...