Tag: english

Kamikochi I’m back

Last year I was so depleted financially due to the Karakoram expedition that I wasn’t back in Kamikochi until the end of the season. Since I still wasn’t well off enough to afford another attempt at Denali this summer, I can instead hike in Japan every weekend as I please (or as the weather allows). Naturally that means that I was hiking next to the Azusa river at the first chance.


The Global Rescue Experience

For my trip to Pakistan last summer, I’d signed up for the Global Rescue travel insurance in addition to my “normal” membership. I’ve been using this setup for most of my expeditions, since the membership covers helicopter rescue (a very important aspect especially in rural Pakistan) and the travel insurance covers pretty much everything else (though they refused to pay for my camera that was stolen in Argentina). For the Broad Peak + K2 expedition it wasn’t even a cheap endeavor with the travel insurance clocking in at almost $9000. However it included “interrupt for any reason” coverage, meaning it should pay up for pretty much any reason.

View from a little above crampon point on Broad Peak

Knotfest Japan 2023

Knotfest is back! I’ve been there both times it was organized in Japan (though I only have a blog post from the 2016 event). I had to look through my photo archives to confirm I was there in 2014 too, and I was surprised to “learn” that apparently I’d seen Korn live back then… This year the plan was different.


Hearing Loss Park 2023

I’ve been to Loud Park twice before, in 2012 (got a shirt but no blogpost) and 2016, so I was pretty happy to hear it was coming back after years of covid-forced absence. The lineup caught my eye because of Pantera—I thought they’d never tour again since the Abbott brothers died, so this was a chance I wasn’t willing to let go (even though I’m not that much of a Pantera fan).


Addictions

Observing my own behavior I realize that I tend to get “addicted” to things. For example last year it was League in the early months and interior design after getting back from Pakistan. Of course it’s on top of my generic routine of going to the gym and hiking, climbing and/or snowboarding, but it also means that it takes a huge amount of effort to focus on anything else. Even if I want to code up some of my ideas, I’d end up playing ranked for hours or looking up reversible interior hacks for my tiny flat.

For the past few weeks the ongoing addiction has been playing the bass. I don’t know why it suddenly clicked so hard (since I’ve owned a bass for over a decade now and practiced some riffs on and off) but it did. It’s been since I graduated (and thus stopped playing actively) that I had calluses on my fingers. My sense of rhythm is still trash, but even when I was in the music club it took two years to develop that, so no rush there.

This time though I picked up an audio interface (Focusrite Scarlett 2i2) so that I can hear and record better. I’ve often seen Youtube musicians joke about “the first time you hear yourself recorded” and damn it’s true. The bad is real. But I guess that’s what makes the progress of learning new stuff so enjoyable.


Just a casual idea

I haven’t read the manga of En-en no Shouboutai, only enjoyed some of the anime, but here’s one idea. In episode 10 there’s a scene of the sun setting… except we know with maps that the camera is located in Tokyo.

Now give it a thought. A sunset from Tokyo with Tanzawa in that direction (a point of view familiar to anyone who’s driven out on the Chuo highway) means that there should be Mt Fuji in front of the sun there. Except there isn’t. Maybe it’s a cloudy day? Doesn’t look so bad really.

So then… If there’s no Mt Fuji, where did it go? In a world of “fire everywhere” I wonder where a volcano could possibly go. Maybe a small little eruption? Marginally cataclysmic?


Discovery weekly

I appreciate Spotify’s regularly changing playlists. I have trouble keeping my daily playlists in any shape (they tend to converge on way too similar music), but I like the Discovery Weekly and the Release Radar a lot.


Norlan

A few years back, when I think it was still only being crowdfunded, I got myself a pair of the Norlan whisky glasses. I cracked one sometime later and lost the other one to a fall from the countertop last week. By sheer coincidence though, last fall I clicked on their email about their steel tumbler, which is about the same shape as the glass glasses were, except steel. Meaning hopefully I won’t be able to break it. It also arrived just in time (literally the day after I broke the second glass). Cheers.

Casually back climbing

Nowadays I mostly go indoor climbing to a gym in Ogikubo. It’s about 20 minutes by bicycle, which is usually not a problem, except today the promised cold weather hit with subzero temperatures. So that I don’t freeze on my ride, I put on the headband head warmer thing I got when I had dreds (so it hadn’t had much of a role in the past decade) and some fuzzy gloves.

The climbing itself went about as well as expected. I managed to send a new 5Q, and as one of the walls were rebuilt just today, I also managed to snatch the first send on some of the easier routes. I didn’t have enough strength left in me to clear the last two 6Qs, so instead I was doing rounds on easier routes I’d sent before. As a result I managed to shred both my pinky fingers (that hasn’t happened in a good while), but some tape solves that.


A year of things not working out

Including working out. If only I was joking.

a foggy forest with trees on a hill