Has your mind ever wanted one thing and the rest of your body wanted something else? This was the case with me last weekend. An opportunity came up where I could go snowboarding in Nagano with a bunch of new Japanese friends. After snowboarding in Hokkaido, I was still itching to go snowboarding again and this time it was Nagano, the site of the Winter Olympics in 1998! There had to be great snow right?! We would leave Friday night and sleep on the bus over night and get to Nagano (north of where I live) by early morning. During the day on Friday, I started to feel weak, tired, and coughing and runny nose had started. I knew I was coming down with something but I was reluctant to stay home for the weekend and miss out on Nagano. SO…I went and boy did I pay the price! Literally and figuratively speaking!
Unfortunately, my mind had won the battle and forced my body to go snowboarding. Sometimes I think I have this problem where my mind wants something and it’s not in the best interest for my entire well-being. The bus ride there was “extremely” painful for me. We were in a chartered bus and one of my new Japanese friends that organized the event had seating chart for everybody! A seating chart! The youngest person there was 19 and the oldest was 35, was it really necessary? I guess it showed the event was well organized since there were 48 of us. I didn’t mind the seating chart all that much except it sucked to have my seat along with maybe 7 or 8 other poor souls. Unfortunately, the bus was short 8 to 9 seats but there were fold out seats into the middle aisle of the bus. These seats were thinner and not very well padded. The worst part was, the back of the seat only goes up to the middle of my back and not all the way to my head. I was supposed to sleep 6 hours or so sitting on that crap while I was feeling sick! And it doesn’t get any better when my seat was at the front of the bus. Every two hours when we took a bathroom break, I needed to fold up my chair and get off the bus to let everybody off and then be the last one to sit back down before we take off again!
Snowboarding wasn’t a pleasurable experience for me but the surrounding scenery was beautiful and the snow was decent. It was two days of snowboarding in pain and I forced myself to do it because I already paid for it. It was also an added bonus Saturday night when I had a fever. I didn’t have a thermometer with me but my body doesn’t lie. With the limited medical knowledge I have, I assessed all the symptoms I had and I was 90% sure I had the flu. Nobody in Japan knows what you’re talking about if you just say I have the “flu”. You have to say I have “Influenza” and then they’ll get it. Sure and behold, the doctor confirmed I had Influenza Strain A. I don’t recall the last time I had the flu!! I couldn’t go to work for 4 days, quite obvious for the nature of my work, and the fact I could not do ANYTHING for two straight days except drug myself to sleep. The flu really sucks! I hate how it makes you feel so weak and all shivery but isn’t it amazing how a degree or two increase in your body temperature can practically debilitate you?! It also sucks when you know too much about your condition and what your body is going through and you can’t do anything about it except to wait for your immune system to fight it off. I seem to be using the word “suck” very much ……because it does!!
Pics from Nagano (not many)