Category: Daily Life

Wahoo for Wahoo, and Thanks Y’s Road Lads

Further to the weekend’s bike device calamities, Saturday’s mess turned into a much better Sunday.

Saturday was supposed to be a day for getting the Wahoo Elemnt Bolt repaired.

But an untimely drop in front of a couple of passing cars resulted in the device being utterly destroyed.

Already worrying too much about too many things, Kangaeroo knew that pondering was not an option and a planned tough ride on Sunday would need guidance.

Moreover, Mrs. Kangaeroo had gone to work and forgotten her mobile phone, so rather than asking for permission, actions would have to be apologized for, which is always the better option both in Japan and in marriage.

So, Kangaeroo bought a new Wahoo Elemnt Bolt. In color!

Everything was perfect. Had to go to Ueno to collect some glasses being repaired, and Y’S Road Ueno Asazo was selling the devices just a couple of hundred meters away.

The price was steep at over 48,000 yen, but not as steep as the enormity of not knowing where to go.

So, out came the plastic, the eyes closed, the bill could wait and the afternoon was spent in a Maccas charging up the new Wahoo and reading the manual.

Everything was perfect. Until Sunday morning came and it was time to write a blog entry about the previous day’s events.

Writing the entry required looking up Y’s Road and Elemnt Bolt. And in doing so, I discovered that the same bloody device I had spent 48,000 yen on the previous day was now part of a time sale and selling for just 35,500 yen. A full day’s pay cheaper.

Bloody hell. I wanted to cry.

I had arranged a visit to Y’s Road Fuchu Tamagawa anyway to collect bar mitts that I had forgotten while La Cangura was being repaired on Friday, so I packed up the Elemnt Bolt and took it with me.

I got to the store and asked if I could make a return, explaining that I wanted to buy the device, but at the price is was being sold online, not the price that I had paid for it.

The lads were sympathetic, but pointed out that I couldn’t do it as I had made the purchase by card at another store, which was on a different system to theirs.

I’d kinda figured this would be what happened, so turned my attention to booking an appointment for repairs to the Death Machine.

Well, as I was doing so, Sato-san at the store contacted Takatsuka-san at Y’s Road Ueno Asoza, where I had bought the device, and explained my situation.

The Y’s Road lads agreed that I would be able to get the device at the cheaper online price, provided I hurried to the store where I had bought it and went through the refund process before all available devices were sold.

Well, I needed no further prompting. I finished all the errands that needed being done, raced home for lunch, sent the wife off to work and put the bird to bed.

Then, it was onto the Brommie and off to Ueno. I eventually made it to Y’s Road Ueno Asoza, and Takatsukua-san was there waiting for me.

We went through the rigmarole of canceling yesterday’s purchase, refunding me, then rebuying the Wahoo. I could not express my gratitude enough to the guys from Y’s Road and the effort they had made on my behalf, and the kindness with which they treated the case.

Everything worked perfectly!

It was then back on the Brommie and home again.

All went smoothly, with a delightful dinner and great pleasure at having saved so much money. A warm glow filled my heart, together with the sense that my wretched luck of the past couple of years was finally looking to be taking a turn.

Planning to gloat about the situation on this website, I prepared a cup of cocoa to partake while writing. I filled my favorite cup featuring a picture of Hokusai’s The Great Wave of Kanagawa and looked forward to writing.

And then I dropped the bloody cup and broke it, spilling cocoa all over the kitchen walls and floors.

It’s All Happening Here!

Pushed for time and all other sorts of resources, Kangaeroo was surprised to note this morning that it had been almost 10 days since the last post on the site.

So much has been going on, some of it pretty crucial, that time slipped away.

To borrow a turn of phrase made popular by one-time Australian cricket captain and commentator (and fellow Victorian) Bill Lawry, it’s all happening here.

I guess it’s best to go forward by category.

Among Kangaeroo’s interests over the past year has been the Aussie garden.

A crucial part of that garden is the lawn, traditionally an integral cog in the Australian horticulturalist’s kit (but less so nowadays because of the environmental impact in terms of using up so much water).

Grass tends to go dormant over winter, which means many lawns turn brown.

But so far Kangaeroo has been fortunate enough to maintain a strong shade of green.

Raking has proved to be enormous in that, and keeps the garden looking fresh and alive.

It was a lucky lesson learned, purely by coincidence.

It’s not just the Kangaeroo family and friends who are getting to enjoy the Aussie garden, either.

Plenty of birds are coming to take a look at some of the flower, but especially the bird bath.

Among the visitors have been warbling white-eyes, Japanese tits (get your mind out of the gutter!), brown-earned bulbuls and oriental turtle doves, the avian symbol of the city of Tama.

Outside of the garden, the ruling bird, Dino the Dinosaur, has also played a pretty influential role in goings on at Kangaeroo Coven.

For the past week or so, she has been laying eggs yet again.

This involves her tearing strips of paper incessantly as she frantically seeks to build a nest.

She also gets pretty aggressive.

Dino is normally extremely possessive and clingy, but this falls by the wayside when she lays.

She got so sick, a rescue run to the avian vet was required in the cold and snow last week, only for Dino to become bright and perky immediately upon arriving at the end of the grueling 15-km bike trip through the undulating outskirts of Machida.

It was a delightful relief, to be honest, though Dino is more focused on her eggs at the moment. Except when she’s tearing paper, pooping or eating persimmons.

Mr. and Mrs. Kangaeroo also got a rare chance to spend some time together and headed out for a delightful sushi lunch.

Backed by a handful of GoToEat campaign deals, we could pig out on pricey and delightfully delicious sushi for a grand total of 500 yen in cash.

Cycling has, as always, continued to be a constant in Kanageroo’s life.

So far, Kangaeroo has risen early every morning and headed off into the dark and cold to ride.

One ride, in particular, may pave the way to new horizons, but that matter has yet to be decided, so there will be more on that further down the track, I reckon.

Otherwise, it has been pretty much the same, standard fare, although the Death Machine has played a more active part in cycling so far in 2023.

Kangaeroo feels more at ease on the recumbent and is better able to maneuver it.

Consequently, average speeds are showing a distinct improvement.

Except, of course, when climbing.

Climbing overall has displayed a marked downturn as Kangaeroo continues to pack on the pounds with his overloaded, sugar-heavy diet.

Still not ready to make a change, yet, it seems.

Grass is Greener….Here, And Not On the Other Side!

Kangaeroo Coven’s garden is about to enter is second spring, and is currently going through its first winter. And its grass is greener than could ever be imagined…literally!

Although Kangaeroo comes from a family of avid gardeners, he had never really had a chance to do much gardening.

Only an unfortunate attempt at a balcony garden during penthouse living at the turn of the century had afforded itself, with less than promising results that were later to dwindle away to nothing.

Until Kangaeroo Coven came into being, and with it a garden.

It was an ounce of luck, actually, as the garden had been sought to provide a place to service the Kangaeroo cycling fleet.

But large-scale maintenance repairs that shut off most of the garden and the chance discovery of a gardener nearby who specializes in Aussie plants, and next thing you know, Kangaeroo has got an Aussie garden.

The first year has been a largely learning experience. Summer humidity and over-watering cost a few plants, most agonizingly the kangaroo paw that looked so beautiful and had taken a place in Kangaeroo’s heart.

Moving into winter has driven many plants dormant, but in general, the garden is thriving. And the lawn is doing exceptionally well.

Japanese grasses tend to go dormant and brown from the late autumn. Kangaeroo is also using a Japanese lawn, but has also blended it with a bluegrass that stays fairly green all year-round.

The lawn was brown and patchy until a few weeks ago, when Kangaeroo came across the suggestion to rake lawns to make them healthier, exposing them to greater air and light.

Giving it a burl, Kangaeroo was delighted to discover the lawn becoming verdant.

Next job is to start propagating seeds, then plant and give away.

What fun! Not much room to fix the treadlies as initially planned, but the beautiful garden is a priceless gift that will only get better.

Well, At Least We Found Out

Kangaeroo’s housing estate has recently been afflicted with a spate of bicycle thefts and vandalizations.

As an avid cyclist, this hit Kangaeroo hard.

Mrs. Kangaeroo’s winter gloves were stolen, forcing her to head out into the freezing cold winter morning with her hands unprotected from the elements.

Kangaeroo’s spare road bike and the death machine were also vandalized and various equipment and accessories were stolen.

Enraged, Kangaeroo headed to the police to report the issue, even if only to be able to received formal notification to enable making an insurance claim.

Astonishingly, instead of largely ignoring a bicycle-related theft issue, as is customary among police in Japan, the officer was extremely helpful in dealing with the case, telling Kangaeroo that a number of people had filed complaints.

Amazingly, within an hour of making contact, the police had found the perpetrator and recovered all the stolen goods.

Kangaeroo had feared a hate crime as his bikes prominently display the Australian flag.

It was over-dramatic.

In fact, the case was sad. The “perpetrator” was a young lad with an intellectual disability. He had not intended to damage anything and the things he removed he simply hoarded.

Kangaeroo was delighted to get his stuff back. And even more delighted not to have filed a criminal complaint (pressed charges). Japan being Japan, those that did file a formal complaint now have to go through the rigmarole of following it through even though there will be no prosecution.