Today marked another first in my life, and a rather unexpected one at that: I won a sporting event! The Sasaki family had invited me to participate in a 5km ‘fun’ run, and amazingly out of a field of around 500-600 people I took the gold. Given some of these participants were children, but in the mad dash for the finish line I was neck and neck with a professional athlete. I managed to just about keep my footing and my time of 21:41 was enough to win me the race and take home the winning prize of a T-shirt signed by the Sydney 2000 Olympics marathon winner. It may only have been 5km but it was one of my proudest achievements to date, and definitely the high point in my sporting ‘career’.
After the race the whole family went to go and relax in one of the local Onsens overlooking the lake. After nearly choking in a build up of lactic acid this is exactly what I needed, and as the soothing waters of the baths flowed over me I took in the gorgeous views and reminded myself again how lucky I have been to have ended up with such a fabulous family. If I have somehow managed to endear myself to them only half as much as they have to me then I would be very happy. It was with great sorrow that I therefore realised that I had left Mrs. Sasaki’s towel at the Onsesn, thereby undoing any good work I may have done by crediting her cooking for my race winning performance during my acceptance speech, whoops!