Monday, June 22, 2009
Waiting For MyToe to Heal...
I am typing now from Pizza Hut, a central location where you can indulge in the finest in traditional Indonesian dining. I am not able to get online, as the router here in Pizza Hut is apparently connected to a challenged DSL line. So, I get a sterling connection to the router in Pizza Hut, but no connection to the Internet. I just finished an ice cream topped with whipped cream and peanuts. I delight in them as peanuts are practically becoming outlawed in the United States. Yes, we can buy them. Nowhere in Indonesia will you find peanuts referred to as “potential allergens.” Here they are content to call them peanuts, or the word in Indonesian that means 'peanuts.
Still, I am going to be off to Mass celebration where the service will be given in English, and I will be catching a cab in a few minutes to dress for that. I did have surgery on my toe the first couple days here, and my limitations walking became more exacerbated by my sore toe, which does feel much better thanks to a doctor who speaks English confidently, but incomprehensibly.
In the days to come, I will be traveling to a smaller province called Jogjakarta, about which I will have much to report. Asking for a second coffee is a challenge. Though I ought to relax, as my taxi will arrive soon.
I arrived too late at the apartment to make it out to Mass. So, after reading the Mass readings, an engaging in appropriate solemnity, I went out in search of a good buy on a wheelchair. My sister pitched the idea to my girlfriend, Ricka, and she pitched the idea to me.
I love walking. I love the freedom it gives me. But, when all is said and done, walking Indonesian streets with bum legs is a killer. When I get tired my foot starts curling inward, and walking becomes impossible. Determined to enjoy my visit here, as well as my upcoming trips to Jogjakarta and Bandung, I am thrilled at having this new accessory.
This trip I was able to enjoy a meal at an outdoor diner, manned by several men with pushcarts that will all be gone by tomorrow morning. I had sate ayam (skewered barbecue chicken), nasi goreng gila (crazy Indonesian fried rice), dim sum, and a plate of very spicy fried tofu pieces,served cold in a sauce with big chunks of raw chili peppers. I am self-conscious, though, since leaving Redding weeks ago,my belly is noticeably bigger. At 24 Hour Fitness Center in San Jose I weighed in at 203 pounds. I am terrified to think what has shifted in the week since
I have to find a way to exercise while I am here, because I do not want to fill out all the extra space on this wheelchair. I now know how easy it is to lose my edge by moving away from the regular gym workouts, and my hours spent on the job. I am amazed, truly bothered by this. I will find a way, some way to burn some extra calories everyday. I will enjoy Jogjakarta more if I am working to stay in shape.
So, as I continue my tropical adventure, I reflect on my life history, following diet trends in America. I remember the Scarsdale Diet, the Grapefruit Diet (lousy if you are on many medications), the Atkin's Diet (and I know you Atkin's converts are still out there, the water diet, and many, many others. I can still watch the parade of spokespeople lined up for Jenny Craig, and the giant corporations built out from Weight Watchers, and Nutrisystem. I also have met many people that have lost weight participating in the 12-step group Overeaters Anonymous (which asks no money from participants).
I think about all these things as I remember this beautiful woman walking through Safeway years ago. I stopped her to comment on her shirt. She was working as a dietitian, and was wearing the message that changes my world today:
“It's the Calories, Stupid!”
Thank you for reading.