Afternoon in Wilhelminapark

19 05 2014

Subtitle: Chicks & Ducks

Saturday afternoon I went for the first time to enjoy some real sun in Wilhelminapark and discovered there were not only a huge amount of nice people (girls) but also very funny ducks wandering around, very used to people and I guess to get food from them.

Afternoon in Wilhelminapark Afternoon in Wilhelminapark
Afternoon in Wilhelminapark Afternoon in Wilhelminapark

Not a day for looking straight in the sun…

Afternoon in Wilhelminapark

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Boulevard Of Broken Dreams

17 04 2014

Subtitle: How can two letters, E and X, add so much weight to a word?

I have just discovered how “ex-girlfriend” is a tough word since I have been using it more and more often in the past few weeks. As expected ** broke up with me and I did not fight her decision because I do think it is the best for her.

Age differences but not only stand behind it. And the fact I do care a lot about her, stop me from fighting against her decision. That does not mean I do not care or I do not feel hurt by this new change. She was the right person for a long time, exactly what I wanted.

On the other hand she defined the break up as a habit to quit: probably she had left interest in us long time ago and she had just taken her time to make up her mind and prepare properly for the “aftermath”. Nothing against her! I am ok for her not suffering, probably even being fast ready for another step of her life.. as she said fast enough: 向前走,莫回头 – move forward, don’t turn back! She has always been the one more practical in the couple, and I always wanted to learn more from her.. this is the time!

My mind though is still struggling when I am asked about my trips and my experience in China and I tell stories including my girlfriend… wait, no, my EX-girlfriend! The “problem” is that the main part of my experience in China has been shared with her, and it has been special thanks to her, more complete, more Chinese, as I always wanted.

Even if for someone maybe I failed during that period, returning to Europe after only 3.5 years, I value a lot that time and I miss Asia a lot. But thinking about China is almost impossible without thinking about her. And I do not want to stop thinking about Asia! The dream is not over, even if I have been there and come back to Europe!

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It might even be possible in the future we will be friends again. Time will tell. Even if in my personal break up history I haven’t managed to keep much contacts with exes. But maybe with her it will be possible, since the relationship was based on quite a few things in common, as we had understood during long summer walks.

For the time being anyway I certainly do not want to know who is her next important person that will make this European experience as special as she deserves it. I am not so “holy”.. As I know myself, I have to grow stronger, and not looking in her direction any more.. I also have to 向前走,莫回头!!

 I walk a lonely road
The only one that I have ever known
Don’t know where it goes
But It’s home to me and I walk alone

My shadow’s the only one that walks beside me
my shallow hearts the only thing that’s beating
sometimes I wish someone out there will find me
til then i walk alone

Read between the lines
What’s fucked up and everything’s all right
Check my vital signs to know I’m still alive
And I walk alone





Inspired Bycicles

15 09 2013

Subtitle: Balance is not an abstract concept!!

Yeah, this kind of balance would help in Aikido as well!!





The things I regret the most

10 09 2013

Subtitle: In other words, what I will do during my next trips..

Around 5 pm of Friday 2nd April 2010, Beijing time, I arrived at Hefei and (funny, the dates in my life seem to repeat at fixed intervals.. very engineering) Monday 2nd September 2013 I was back in Italy: after 1249 days or exactly 3 years and 5 months (107.913.600 seconds or 1.798.560 minutes or 29.976 hours) my first experience about living in Asia has ended.

The reasons that brought me to this decision have been a good mix between professional and personal ones: the last job in the south (Longgang district of Shenzhen, a village of typical Chinese mass production factories) had only the effect to make me realize that I want ot work more in modern electronics companies in testing, development, hands-on roles. Not a managerial position in a factory that needed more qualified and expert people than me in order to improve their production system. Unfortunately I took a challenge hoping in a better guidance that I did get at the end, in an environment that was just a Chinese factory ran in Chinese way, maybe the only way to survive in Guangdong! Read the rest of this entry »





Business weekly sabbat

9 09 2013

Subtitle: Definitively I’m not in China anymore!!

I had almost forgotten something normal in Italy, less abroad in Europe and completely out of the world in China: the weekly day off!! Still common even in this period of economic crisis, more than just a day off it is not inappropriate to consider it a real sabbat, a festivity!

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I remembered it right now when I planned to have a nice Italian ice cream while collecting the washed and ironed suit, readied up for my job interview on Thursday!

Of course the most common closing time is Monday or Monday afternoon… at least not of the laundry!!

No ice cream for me ;(

In China, the only day I saw most (but not all) shops closed was Chinese New Year day! Otherwise taking a day off is completely crazy over there!!

It’s another world for business! A place where Sunday is like a Wednesday and it takes soem time to get use of it but, trust me, I do miss that already!





Bye bye Hong Kong…

1 09 2013

Subtitle: Bye bye my 2 bokken with saya as well 😦

Also these couple of days in Hong Kong have passed, extreme fast.

Funny how the human mind works. Friday afternoon, sitting in a small restaurant in a HK shopping center I suddenly realized the China part of my life was over, at least for now.

The funny feeling was that I felt nothing special preparing the luggages, sending boxes to Italy, cleaning the room, getting up early and leaving Longgang, coming to Hong Kong for these last few days…

…until in this restaurant I start reading some friend’s comments on the blog or Facebook.. and then it all came to me.. together with the weight of another change of my life, wherever direction it will take.

And I start already missing the friends I made these past years in China. Knowing how difficult it is to keep contacts over long distances I wonder how many ties will break and how many won’t.

It was nice though to meet again the people in Doyukai Aikido dojo in HK: I had to promise them that I was really leaving, even if they had already givens a nice Aikido farewell just two weeks before.

Also this time I received a surprise by Nagai sensei: he ask me to show one technique to the whole class and the practice that technique all together. Since we we working on yokomenuchi and we had already done forms for the two basic entrance (irimi-tenkan and out of the line early entrance) I proposed something different, the favorite Dominique sensei yokomenuchi “control”. His way is avoiding the attack without moving from the attacked position (except move slightly back the upper body to avoid to be hit) and controlling the attacking arm (as beginner, taking physically contact but not blocking uke’s arm, then relaxing your own arm so that the attack pass in front – advanced people would not seek the contact in the movement).

Then on this different way to receive yokomenuchi attack, I presented also the form of iriminage that Dominique sensei practice in the summer. A form more similar to Irie sensei Aikido, controlling uke in two points (shoulder and arm) and sort of guiding him in the throw. The control of the arm happens with the open hand with palm upwards placed over uke’s elbow and using the wrist and hips to create an absorbing movement to “call” uke forward, not stopping then the intention and keeping the dynamic.

It was nice to show a technique at Doyukai dojo and I saw on the mats that everybody tried to perform what I showed.

Nice feelings as usual!

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In a few hours my flight will depart. It’s really close now the time of the last farewell.

See you soon Asia!!

FUNNY THING OF THE DAY – This tag was born when I arrived in China and probably this is the last time I use it, except for the post I still have to write about things happened in China. The funny (sad) thing today is that my bokkens haven’t been considered sport equipment by KLM. On their homepage, in addition to the tie heavy luggages I am traveling with (20 kg backpack and 24 kg trolley) I could have registered golf, fish or ski equipment for free! Since my bokkens in the homemade packaging are something else I went with them to the city check in (in HK you can check in your luggage in the center many hours before departure). But there they told me that since it isn’t any common sport equipment, it is consider as 3rd luggage, so I would have had to pay 200 US dollars!! For 2 bokkens and sayas??? No #%^*ing way!! So my dear friend Peter is going to baby sit my bokkens until my next trip to HK!!!





Proper Aikido farewell

21 08 2013

Subtitle: Strong feeling of belonging to Doyukai Aikido

Last weekend I went to Hong Kong for my last Aikido weekend at Doyukai Aikido dojo, for practice with Nagai sensei and all the nice people I met there and spend a nice time with Peter and Yolanda, new close friends from this Aikido dojo.

To my surprise toward the end of Sunday practice Nagai sensei celebrated my departure as I was part of the dojo, in some common Aikido way: first I threw all fellow Aikidokas twice, against any possible attack (the tiniest child at practice, Japanese boy, first to come, attacked me with tsuki – straight punch!!). Then after this, everyone on the mats threw me once!!

My condition is not top and you can clearly see my skin color on the Sunday picture was definitively more red than Saturday: I was dead tired.. and super happy!!

The serious pictures are here 😉 but we had lots of fun taking these:

Group picture at Doyukai Aikido dojo - funny version

Saturday session

Group photo at Doyukai dojo on Sunday

Sunday session

Since I have never connected, Aikido-wise, with the dojo in Shenzhen, it has been nice to see that my feelings were in a way recirpocated by Nagai sensei and the people in Doyukai: at Aikido level and at personal level as well, I did consider Doyukai my own dojo, even if I managed to practice only some weekends and I started going there only after Endo sensei seminar in Hong Kong last February.

Soon or later I will meet again these kind people, on the mats of some dojos around the globe!!