Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Small Swimming Improvement Today

Today was not particularly eventful. I was a bit tired and woke up slightly later than usual. However, by hurrying up I got into the water by 6:27 am, and swam 4,000 meters in 1 hr 19 mins. Then I rested and chatted with my friend for a few minutes before the two of us raced over 100 meters. While my stroke had felt fairly good on the slower long distance swimming, on this short distance, I did not feel that up to it, and my flip turns were a little awkward, meaning that each time we turned my friend gained some ground. However, I went 1 min 27 secs to his 1 min 25 secs, which shows I improved slightly compared to recent swims when I could not really do better than 1 min 29 secs. So the small improvements are coming. All in all, I swam 4,250 meters today. Not bad since I had at the most 1 hr 30 mins in which to swim. There were also a few less people at the pool today. It rained fairly hard parts of last night, due to a nearby typhoon, which is enough to discourage quite a lot of the morning swimmers from coming.This month I have tended to be a little less disciplined with my work, have had a few distractions like trips up to Taipei, and have also got a little carried away with blogging. However, I think I am still processing quite a few things and so putting some things down in writing is quite good. I can't just be a machine all day long. My study room/office is still quite a mess, but I am gradually sorting and packing and arranging various things, and so eventually it will look nice.

Today I include a painting of a bird I copied from a book I was reading (at the age of 11), as well as a drawing of a toad family, that was the kind of thing I used to dream about when I was in elementary school. I don't think I ever gave the drawing a title. Maybe I should call it the "Psychedelic Toad House". In case anyone has noticed that I have included a photo of a "Psychedelic Rolls Royce" in the right column of my blog, this was the one that John Lennon of the Beatles had painted only a few miles from where I grew up. Originally black, the car was taken by John and/or his driver to an autoshop that had the equipment to spray paint cars. After discussing the colors, etc., the shop's boss commissioned some gypsies who were probably uneducated but at least had some imagination. Up to that time the Rolls Royce was usually driven by royalty or retired wealthy company directors, so when this multicolored version took to the streets it caused an uproar among the British public. One old woman was so incensed by it that she repeatedly hit it with her umbrella. Later the car was shipped to the US and eventually sold there for a cool US$2.3 million to an American. So when you think the change of color scheme ruined the car, just think of the huge return on the investment. It seems the British are well known for their eccentricities.

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