Too hot!

Oh my word, what a scorcher!

All the sudden, the summer had arrived in London and it took us by surprise. Bella the Hairy and I hit the park as soon as the sun was out because a good weather was never guaranteed when it came to the British weather. However, the past few days were a little too warm for Bella.

Shall I throw a ball for you?

Despite drinking water throughout the walk, she appeared a bit worse for wear.

Ok, let’s have a break in the shade…

The forecast was 26°C max – later, it turned out to be  29°C! – but I felt it was hotter than that. I wished if I came in shorts not in skinny jeans!

After the break, we pressed on…

 

It is probably about time Bella should have her summer haircut. I shall ask her groomer to make her more streamlined…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Don’t despair

My Bella could do far far worse…

 

Who cares if he finishes it or not. He is so adorable!

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Big freeze

Apparently, it was the coldest first day of March on record. Even though the snow caused huge havoc on road and rail, Bella and I enjoyed it a lot.

‘I love the snow as long as it is fresh!’

 

She romped around in the snow, chasing an invisible something larking under the white surface.

Snow ball fight commences!

 

She couldn’t have enough of it. She loved every minute we spent on a wood deck behind Hubbie’s office. I kicked up some snow with my Timberland boots and she chased the bits and pieces thrown into her furry face.

Thanks to Beast from the East, my girl Bella, who was still halfway out of her puppydom, could experience and have fun with the snow. I was very happy for her.

Who knows when we gonna have another snowfall? A five years wait? Perhaps?

My favourite lunch haunt, Alpino, had a very handsome snowman by the entrance…

For some people, this freakish weather condition must have been nuisance or even menace. However, experiencing a proper winter in London was a very rare thing and I was very happy to able to enjoy it with Bella…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Love of my life

Yesterday was St Valentine’s Day and Hubbie and I exchanged cards like we always did. After he left for work, I turned on TV and saw a women’s ice hockey match on the screen.

I used to look forward to every winter Olympic game, especially ice hockey games because I played the sport as a hobby. However this Olympic Game in Pyeongchang, I am not so sure. The reason for my hesitation is not because this game is riddled with too much of the political nuances but because of the heartache I feel every time I watch an ice hockey match. In some way, I could say that ice hockey was love of my life. It wasn’t just a mere hobby but the sport was my obsession.

Of course, my Hubbie is always the most important love of my life and because of his blessing and support, I could enjoy this beautiful sport for a long time.

What a fun, what a joy it was…

Two seasons ago, I decided to give up the sport and it was not easy. Even though I knew I was becoming too old for this amazing but also demanding game, the reality was hard to swollow.

Despite the doubts crept into my head every time I found myself not being able to keep up during training – ‘Am I too old for this?’ ‘Will I bust my knee if I go on too hard?’ ‘Will the coach give me less ice time because I look tired?’, I wanted to carry on as long as possible. It is true that the sport did help prolonging my “youth”. I enjoyed being a part of the team and my teammates’ friendship and encouragement was another reason why I wanted to hang on to the sport. A youthful atmosphere of the changing room helped me to fool myself that I was younger than what I really was, and it was addictive.

The thing I still regret about my behaviour towards the end of my player career was how jealous I was to some of my teammates. Without fully understanding what I was becoming of, I complained to the coach incessantly about my place in the game and the team. I must have been such a pain in the butt.

It is a cruel blow but the decision time arrives eventually to anyone who plays competitive team sports. If you can no longer keep up with the play and your teammates physically, the time is up. It really doesn’t matter how much you love the sport because the writing is on the wall.

Since that June, my hockey sticks have been shut away in a cupboard for good but I do miss ice hockey and thinking about it still gives me a tight chest. It feels like if I am mourning for a lost love. Remembering how great I felt sprinting down the ice and chasing a puck. It was a pure joy!

Now, I ponder if I will ever find another love like ice hockey. Is there any activity which can ignite my passion like the game could? I am really not sure…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri

I think the film will win an Oscar.
I watched it at Barbican Cinema Sunday evening and understood why everyone who watched it was raving about it…

 

The film was poignant, funny and in some quirky way, heart-warming. I really really like it but I shan’t divulge too much because otherwise, it will spoil your fun.

Go to cinema and watch it. You won’t be disappointed.

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

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