Come Away With Me to Japan and Beating Cancer (20.4.2020)

Hello, all you good people of the blogosphere. How is your day going? I hope you have a wonderful Monday despite everything and that the new week brings only good things to your door.

Last Wednesday, we learned the next steps of my cancer journey. I told you a little about my experiences on Saturday. Next week Monday I am going to start chemotherapy which in COVID-19 times means I am going to have to shield. That means I basically need to stay away from everybody including my family. We’ve spent the last couple of days figuring out how to do this but are not sure yet. I keep you updated.

From what I gather, the first cycle of chemo (I have to go through six, each lasting three weeks) is going to be the hardest. Of course, I am apprehensive but am working on a mindset of taking things one day at a time. Currently, I am feeling fine just dealing with the pain of healing muscles. It’s uncomfortable, but working with painkillers, laying down, and doing a little housework makes it bearable.

I am, of course, wondering how I manage the blogging. My goal is to use it as a journal of my journey as well as a distraction to get through chemo. But everybody is different, and I don’t know yet with how many side-effects I have to deal with. Please stay tuned to find out more.

In recent posts, I gave shoutouts to those who lost someone to the virus as well as keyworkers. I have moved these to the sidebar of my blog as I feel I need to be a little frugal with my writing just in case. Today I wish to say thank you to all of you, my family, and friends for all your kind words, encouragement and support. You rock! I could not do it without you.

gif credit: Giphy ~ a white animated dog sits while a huge grey rock falls down. It points to it and white writing appears on top saying: you rock.

But enough of the words. Let’s go travelling.

I am rather intrigued about going to Japan. We probably know about more traditional Japanese music or the good old Japanese Pop, but what about electronic music? Now that is not my natural area of music. I do like a couple of dancefloor songs but don’t usually like listening to it.

Industrial JP though fascinates me. They are a music label which dedicates itself to shine a light on small family businesses in Japan who produce things which are called Machikoba. Industrial JP captures the sounds of the Machikoba workshops and transforms them into dance music. Their mission is to show these businesses in a positive light. According to the Japanese Times, Machikobas have a hard time because small scale production is more expensive. However, they seem to have a place in the heart of Japanese people as it reminds them of better times.

So they have quite some media attention with many documentaries and tv productions showing their hard work and excellent production. It seemed just natural for Industrial JP to bring another point of view into the equation.

Industrial JP was founded in 2016 and have 12 productions since. Their work does not only include music but also videos which show the sources of the sounds used. But I don’t want to keep you any longer from a different music experience. Please listen to “Sugiurum” which was made at Ashigara Film. Please follow the link underneath the video if it doesn’t play here on the blog.

video credit: Industrial JP via YouTube

Please read about Industrial JP in the Japanese Times.

And find out more about Industrial JP on their page.

Come Away With Me 2020 Musical Challenge Country for Monday 27th April, 2020

I am taking a rather random route around the world but sometimes it makes sense. Next week we are going to visit The United States. I know, I know my original idea was not to travel to places which music we know well but hey. We can’t travel now in person. We might as well go everywhere 🙂 . Find out about interesting (maybe still upcoming) musicians from the United States here on the GoodDeedSeats page.

As for the suggestions to take part:

  1. Join in! No matter where, when and with what. You missed the first week? Don’t worry. Just jump in when it suits you.
  2. Send us the link! The ping-back option does not always work so please leave a link in the comments of the post on the day you take part. Or leave it at the “Come Away With Me 2020 FB page
  3. Tag your post either with ” Come Away With Me Musical Challenge”/ #CoAwWiMeMuCh” / “Come Away with Me 2020 Musical Challenge” o/“CoAwWiMe2020MuCh” / . You can also use these as hashtags for Twitter and other Social Networks to give your post more exposure. If you add #blog and #music with your hashtags it will get you more readers.
  4. No matter which music or country the prompt favours you create with it whatever you please. This is supposed to be a fun challenge and no chore.
  5. I post a prompt for the next week with every “Come Away With Me 2020 post” I write.
  6. If you like, use this picture for your readers to find the posts.
Come Away With Me 2020 Badge
Come Away With Me 2020 badge

And just so we can travel a little in our imagination here some videos about Japan. Have fun. If they don’t play here on the blog, follow the links underneath to their YouTube location.

Video credit: Allan Su via YouTube
video credit: BBC Travel Show via YouTube
video credit: BBC Travel Show via YouTube

And now to something different 🙂

Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals Charity Boudicca Appeal

I would also like to encourage you to support the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals Charity’s Boudicca Appeal. They are fundraising 800 000£ to create a dedicated breast cancer unit. The hospital today sees almost double as many breast cancer patients than they did five years ago. That is an enormous rise and puts a lot of pressure on the current facilities and staff. 

For me, that meant so far five journeys to Norwich within a month. That is between 35 and 45 minutes travel each way and the worry, not knowing what comes. On Thursday the 5th of March, we went again. We found out that my cancer needs an operation and probably radiotherapy. But I won’t know for sure until two weeks after the operation. While I am holding up well, it still puts a lot of pressure on my family and me. 

They say on their page they want to build:” An enhanced environment. Purport-built, spacious waiting, diagnostic and treatment rooms. Counselling rooms for women with a breast cancer diagnosis.
Better experience for patients with fewer days of anxiety while patients wait for results.”

That would help a lot. According to the NHS, 1 in 8 women is diagnosed with breast cancer in their life time. So it is essential to create better facilities for breast cancer care. The staff I have met so far are doing an excellent job. They are so caring, being extremely effective and supportive. They do deserve a better work environment.

So please, if you can spare a little money hop over to their Just Giving Page and give as little or much as you can. Or share the page on your social media. Your support means a lot to me! Thank you very much.

No more videos for today but if you like to find out about symptoms of breast cancer have a look at the earlier “Come Away With Me Challenge” posts.

Happy Monday to you all despite everything. May you stay safe and healthy!

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