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Even Faster Squats, an Ultrasound and Crying a Little

Yesterday I started reading Warbreaker, after finally deciding it’ll be the last book for this year, but I want to write this today, to post it before the blood tests I’ll have done tomorrow… And there will be a longer list of them than what the family doctor wrote down, since Friday I went to the gastroenterologist she had sent me to and he gave me another list. Had the alarm wake me up at 11:45 AM then, leaving at 12:50 PM and walking to the clinic on my own, where I got just after 1:15 PM, dad waiting for me after having taken care of something having to do with the parking spot. Meant to buy National Geographic on the way, but the two stands I passed by had the windows shut. I believe that at least in the second case it was just due to the cold and somebody’d have opened the window if I’d have walked up, but I didn’t, and since I hadn’t taken anything else with me, I had nothing to do while waiting. And I did have to wait, since the appointment was for 1:30 PM but two others had it at the same time and I was the last one, so my turn only came just after 2:30 PM. The nurse was annoyed, stressed out, the doctor too, they were saying it had been a marathon that day, but he asked me a few things, felt around, then said they don’t have funds to offer the ultrasound for free anymore but he’ll offer a 50% discount, so I agreed and had that done as well, the results being first degree liver steatosis, an 8 mm liver hemangioma, a small quantity of biliary sludge, a little sand in both kidneys, up to 2 mm in size, a 10 mm cyst in my left kidney and chronic prostatitis. He said none of it is something to worry about at the moment, but those additional tests should help clarify things, and I was out at 2:50 PM. Only got back at 3:23 PM though, even though dad drove me here, since he looked for his new parking spot… And ended up parking on one he thought was it even though I told him it couldn’t be, and I was proven right a few days later.

Speaking of those blood tests, I wonder if I’ll notice the effects right away when I’ll do my squats. Then again, without anything like this, I had to really push at the end to manage 2:29 on December 4… And then I got way faster, managing 2:13 on December 5, in the kitchen, as I was cooking something after having finally cleaned my room a little again, and 2:09 on December 6! Saw 1:04 at 50 and kept pushing, managing what was a new record at the time, beating that 2:10. However, I tried to do even better after that, just missing out on December 7, when I did them in 2:11, but managing it on December 8, when the time was 2:08! Really pushed from the start and saw an amazing 1:20 at 65, which would have been a pace for 2:03, but I was getting tired by then and quite exhausted at the end, obviously getting slower, but I had been fast enough early on to manage that. Sure, I don’t exactly do them correctly when I push for speed, but it works, and I guess it’s just another little trapping I set up for myself… Oh, and while I didn’t time them yesterday, I did again today, the time being 2:13.

Also meant for this week’s run to be yesterday in order to get it out of the way before the blood tests, but that worked out very well because yesterday also ended up being clearly the best day to run. For most of last week, the forecast had been listing a high of 8°C, but then that changed to 5°C during the weekend, jumping back to 7°C Sunday night, all this time just switching between partly and mostly cloudy, only for me to look outside after waking up yesterday to see that it was sunny. And then also went on the balcony for a moment and it felt a fair bit warmer than it should have been, so I checked the reported temperature before leaving and saw 12°C! So it all went according to the original plan at first, the alarm waking me at 1 PM, just as I was having a dream about Andra, having baked pumpkin as well on top of the usual stuff and a piece of a cake brought by my dad, apparently made by my mother, with some honey added on top, instead of the wheat things, but I obviously gave up on the idea of wearing the training shirt again and had the running t-shirt, with an undershirt underneath, when I went out at 3 PM. Had the jacket on me for the walk to and from the park, tying it around my waist while running, and it seemed that I hadn’t tied it properly at first, so it bothered me for a little while, but then I got used to it and it was fine.
The time was 47:11.47, with sector times of 4:18.68, 5:03 (5:02.48), 5:46.54, 4:28 (4:27.76), 5:01 (5:00.77), 5:46.26, 4:25 (4:24.98), 4:58.01, 5:43 (5:42.76) and 1:43.23, making for lap times of 15:07.70, 15:15 (15:14.79) and 15:06 (15:05.75). Thought I had started slowly, and judging by the last three sector times I guess I did leave a bit too much in reserve, but I again only aimed to stay under 48 minutes at first, only changing the target to 47:30 during sector two of lap three. Was actually noticing about a minute and a half before the end of that sector that I was pushing hard and thought I won’t keep that up until the end, but I guess I did.
My right knee gave me a few warnings at one point, but then it was fine. And there weren’t many people either, occasionally making me go the long way around but only needing to weave my way through a few times. Had to slow a little at the end of sector two of lap one, when a couple of slow ones on scooters were ahead of me and cyclists were coming from the opposite direction just as I was reaching the bridge, but the only actually notable problem was on sector two of lap two, when a woman who had a scooter but wasn’t on it at the time decided, despite coming from the opposite direction and therefore seeing me, to stop to read a sign that was next to a stall, stepping towards it and right in front of me just as I was about to pass her on that side, forcing me to cut across and go around her and the scooter on the other side, with no room to also go forward as I did that.
After getting back I was supposed to go to Declic again, after having received an e-mail the day before, asking for help with something they wanted to send to people for Christmas, saying they’ll be there all day, so you can come very early or very late and it’ll still be fine. So I had signed up, stating that I’ll be there at 5 PM, but even before leaving to run I had an SMS telling me that the people who had been there during the first part of the day had finished everything, so there was no more need. Since there wasn’t also an e-mail notifying me of that, it’s a good thing that message didn’t get lost again, or I’d have rushed there for no reason, likely ending up in another awkward situation as well.

To finish with the runs, last week’s was on December 2. Had set the alarm to 1 PM again, but got up at 12:25 PM and went out just after 2 PM. It was pretty sunny, but the temperature was around 5°C and there was some wind as well, so I had the training shirt on, though just an undershirt underneath, without a t-shirt, plus of course the jacket for the walk to and from the park, tying it around my waist for the run. Drank a different kind of tea, having kept some from the previous evening, and had a piece of that same cake mentioned above, also with added honey, instead of the wheat things.
The time was 47:39.75, with sector times of 4:21.54, 5:07.17, 5:52 (5:51.96), 4:25 (4:24.89), 5:02 (5:01.86), 5:47.23, 4:27 (4:26.81), 4:59 (4:58.82), 5:48.47 and 1:51.00, making for lap times of 15:20.67, 15:14 (15:13.98) and 15:14.10. That first lap was hard, the cold air bothered me, my nostrils seemed to close, my chest was starting to hurt a little as well, and I was definitely worried that I’ll fail to even stay under 48 minutes, but after a while I started adapting to the conditions and pushed harder, quite clearly from sector two of lap two, and it worked out. The fact that there were few people helped as well, of course, and there was just a bit of a roadblock on sector one of lap two and a moment of confusion, I think on sector two of lap three, when a guy on a scooter was talking to his friends and not looking ahead as he came towards me.

Went out again after that run, to the protest against live animal exports. Had the metro card, which had somehow also started working again, but I only left at 3:50 PM, so I was rather late, only getting there at 4:23 PM when the protest was supposed to start at 4 PM. But I already wrote about that and don’t really have personal details to add, so I’ll just link to the pictures I took one more time, repeat that I left at 6 PM even though the end wasn’t called and move on, since after that I wanted to buy some things as well.
Decided to first go to that bigger Carrefour, but saw that the bread I meant to get had a different name, being listed as whole wheat in the catalog but “diet” on the product itself, with the ingredients listing “diet flour” as well. The bigger problem, however, was that it felt lighter than the 700 grams it should have had… So I weighed it, placing two on the scales and seeing about 560 grams for one and 600 for the other. Didn’t point it out to anyone though, just leaving it there and getting back on the metro, going to the one at Unirii next, getting two red cabbages, since I noticed that they were cheap, and one bread like that, since that one actually did weigh 700 grams. Then I got back on the metro again and went to that other Kaufland, getting beets, some more bread and pepper. Used the self-checkout, but when I placed one kind of bread, which was even packaged, on the scales it said it was the wrong item, so I had to call the employee to help and when he left an old lady came right up to me, not waiting where one should wait for a machine to become available, which made me feel pressured. Tried to pay quickly, not realizing that the employee had just entered my last item as well, without getting to the end of the process, so the old lady started “teaching” me, stressing me out even more, making me panic, rush even more, even forget my change… At least she reminded me to get it, as I was trying to just grab my stuff and get the fuck out of there. Meant to also get to the Carrefour from the park, after noticing cheap leeks at Unirii but forgetting to buy some, but gave up on that idea and just walked back, entering the building at 9:10 PM. Then I put the jacket, backpacks and vest in the washing machine, being surprised that the print on everything else was still there at the end, but the Yoda on my old backpack came completely off, no trace of it being left anywhere.

On December 4 I was woken up at 9 AM by the doorbell and it was hard to fall asleep after that, but I eventually managed it, though I woke up again at 11:15 AM and checked the door, to see whether there was any note left in it. Then got back to bed and finally got up just before 2 PM. The plan was to go look for some stuff to add to the pasta I wanted to make, but just as I was getting ready to leave dad came back and said he won’t leave again, though he had told me that he was going to be gone for most of the day. And he also said he wanted to buy some stuff and then cook that day, making me end up quite deflated, since I meant to do that, and just because I knew he won’t have time for it those days. Still, after taking a while longer to get the recyclables as well, including the stuff I take to Kaufland, I went out after all, just before 3:30 PM, getting back just before 5:55 PM.
Walked to this Carrefour first and saw that they had placed those locks with codes on their cabinets, no longer requiring coins either. Then I went inside, looking mainly for expiring grated cheese, which they usually have there, in the place for those discounted products. But what I found was expiring grated kashkaval which was also quite expensive, close to the price of the cheapest kashkaval even with the 50% discount, and since I knew that people don’t usually rush to buy that anyway, I left it there for the moment, just getting one small yogurt from that place, to eat after I’ll get back that day, and two leeks. Then I retrieved that stuff I take to Kaufland from the cabinet, placed my purchases in it and went to Kaufland, dropping that stuff off and getting carrots, with the self-checkout again causing problems and the employee saying that yes, it does tend to do that for those products. Had also realized that I was missing a little money, considering the quantities of grated kashkaval I had seen and the other stuff I wanted, and didn’t find any change left in the machine I used, but did spot some in another that I passed on the way out and grabbed it. Then returned to Carrefour and got some grated kashkaval and the one carton of six eggs left in that place that wasn’t bio (organic). There had been more the first time, including cheaper ones, but others had purchased them, so I just got that one, plus one more bread like that, that one actually weighing 736 grams. The problem was that I had messed up when calculating the discount for the eggs, thinking that I had to pay 0.50 RON less, and being relieved when I saw the actual total and realized that, thanks to what I had found earlier, I had 0.53 RON left, so I could just cover that amount without getting into the money I was keeping for National Geographic.

As for Sunday, I was in the kitchen, not long after waking up, when dad came back and then quickly left again in a hurry, then poked his head back in and told me to turn off his computer since he forgot. So I went to the living room, but found it frozen, not responding in any way. Since that had happened before, I knew there was no point in waiting and pressed the button to turn it off that way, then tried starting it again, in safe mode, to see that it worked… And it didn’t, stopping at NTFS.sys and saying that it was missing or corrupt, and then getting stuck on the boot screen when it tried again. So I turned it off, took it out of the desk and disconnected the old HDD, thinking that the problem likely had something to do with a HDD but hoping that it somehow was that one and it ended up freezing the whole thing. And it did start when I tried again, so I started chkdsk on the other partition of the newer HDD first, it got to stage 4 of 5 and then hardly seemed to do anything, taking about half an hour for 1% and the HDD LED showing relatively little activity. Task Manager was listing CPU use constantly above 50%, but it was the only process shown as actually using anything, usually 6% or 8%, chkdsk only occasionally taking 2% for a moment before getting back to 0% and the rest being idle. So after a while I started trying to close chkdsk, with Ctrl+C, but that didn’t work, and when it was at 3% I eventually gave in and rebooted, forcing it to close that way.
The computer started again normally after that, so I canceled the check I had scheduled on the system partition and turned it off again, reconnected that old HDD, put it back in the desk, turned it back on, saw that it still worked… But was awfully worried that I had damaged that partition by forcing chkdsk to close like that, and it was just then that dad finally got back and I didn’t know how to tell him that he might have lost data, so I ended up sort of squeaking something when he got off the phone, since he received a call just as he walked in and went straight to the kitchen to talk. Asked him to check that partition, see whether he still had everything he used to have on it, but he had a quick look, said he has no idea what’s supposed to be there and that as long as the Internet works and he can open and write documents it’s just fine, and told me to never worry about things, since there are always ways to fix or replace them or find a way to work it out. I said that data isn’t a thing and may not be replaceable if lost, but he was just dismissing everything I was saying and went back to the kitchen to make himself something to eat… And I followed him and ended up crying, sitting down and just crying, while he seemed to be making a point of keeping his back towards me and ranting about other stuff until I got up to go to the bathroom, at which point he called after me just to tell me again to never worry about things, as if that didn’t make it even worse. But at least I cried a little, I guess, and I don’t remember when I last managed to do that. Still couldn’t cry while I was alone though, only doing so when I was there with him.

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