A Tubby Tabby, Three Konekos, and a Life with Hello Kitty and Autism

Archive for January, 2009

Bullish On The Year of The OX

Monday, January 26th, 2009


I am wearing new underwear today. Marks & Spencer has an ongoing sale and I took the opportunity to grab some new underwear for the Chinese New Year.  It isn’t red and I skipped on the gold embroidery (maybe I’ll get some of those when I turn 48, when I meet my zodiac year again, just in case), but it’s new, and I am starting the year 4706 right.

The first day of the Lunar New Year is a quiet affair today here at home. With Alex in school and A at work, Alphonse, his nannies, and I must wait for them to come home before festivities begin. It’s pretty relaxed here too, after the whirlwind of sweeping, dusting, and washing we did over the last few days. Today, there will be no cleaning for all of us, lest we sweep away some of that New Year luck.

I did my morning run this morning and I was also able to go to mass. This afternoon, I am settling down on the bed for a few lazy hours with Anthony Bourdain and Jon & Kate Plus Eight.  Before I go back to real chores, I think I’d treat myself to this lazy time. I hope you get some lazy time today too, friends.

Happy New Year!

Walk With Angels

Friday, January 16th, 2009


Considering the number of kilometers I’ve covered since I started my regimen of walking/running, I feel mighty prepared to tackle this year’s Autism Walk. Last year, I was huffing and puffing in the morning sun, flushed pink from running and taking pictures at the same time. I had to pause and catch my breath more than a few times, which only goes to show the very poor state of fitness that I was in last year.

Unfortunately, despite all my preparations, I will not be able to join this year’s Autism Walk. Just a case of poor scheduling, (and yes, some midlife memory crisis) but I inadvertently scheduled another thing on the very day the walk was slated. (*hits head with a brick* ~ do not try this at home!) While I am sorry to miss the excitement of the day, I am even sorrier that I would have to shelve my new shirt ideas for this year. Still,  Team Alphonse may not be around physically, but my family and I (and all those who are invested in Alphonse) will be there in spirit.

If you know anyone with autism, if you live with and love anyone who has autism, if you teach or work with someone with autism, please stand up and be counted. Walk for them. This walk is all about numbers and how we, as a united force, can bring about change for our children and loved ones’ lives.


And oops, a shameless plug for Autism Society Philippines: (pictures borrowed from ASP newsletter) Autism Walk merchandise (official green ASP t-shirts and baller bands) are available at the ASP office (call 926-6941). When you purchase any of these items, you enable the ASP to work another day and reach more people.

To ASP, and to my friends in the autism community, I wish you mild sun and cool winds on Sunday, and lots of kind hearts to brighten the day. God bless!

Running For My Life

Wednesday, January 7th, 2009

I woke up this morning resolved to commit myself to a daily run (well, ehr, more like a really, really brisk walk) but I stepped out to a gloomy, rainy, windy day. The cold weather has made me more ambitious about my exercise regimen of late; I like that I can stay longer outside these days.

On good weeks, I am able to go out thrice a week for my walks/runs. I walk or run alone, with my iPod as sole companion , but along the way, I’ve made some nodding acquaintances in my route. There’s this husband and wife team who jogs daily while holding on to oversized weights. I am amazed that they are able to keep a running conversation between them almost every time I see them. Every now and then, they acknowledge my presence and wave a chirpy hello, even as I wonder if they ever run out of things to say.

There’s also this fabulously fit lady who runs with an iPod shuffle and heart rate monitor attached to her arm, a pedometer on her foot,  and a cellphone in her waistband. She gives me a little smile every now and then, but mostly she keeps content monitoring her various gadgets as she dashes way ahead of me.

And then there’s this old man who runs in the briefest of running shorts that seem very likely to reveal parts left unseen that I am embarrassed to meet his eyes when he runs past me (notice the recurring theme of people running past me?).

I like to observe them as they run or walk about. They help make the 3.5 to 5 km I cover more interesting, and with the music of  Everything But the Girl, Basia, Sharon Cuneta, The Company and Christopher de Leon (I am still enamored with his “Awit Pelikula” album) in my ears, the distance seems almost bearable for my overweight, huffing body.

I like that I feel I am in control of my body, even as my weight has dropped off only slightly in the last few months. The weight I’ve gained since late 2006 is still a long way from being gone, but I feel more awake and more alive these days. And with Oprah confessing to having fallen off the wagon of weight control, I actually feel less guilty about regaining much of the 67 lbs I lost in 2004. When I feel the wind in my face, I feel like I can just about do anything. It’s almost like a fresh start.running-copy2

And so I don my running shoes, and my soggy sweats, and my Hello Kitty arm warmers, visor, and sunglasses. I sling my Hello Kitty bag over my shoulder, slip my pedometer on my right foot, and run. Run until my tongue hangs over my mouth. Until I can feel the blood pounding in my head. And then I take a deep breath and slow down to a brisk walk. When I feel less likely to pass out, I run again. In short bursts, I find I am able to run like the wind. And for a briefest moments, I am the wind.