Some new directions

I originally was using this blog to record my weight loss journal, but have decided to expand the blog to numerous areas.  My weight loss has unfortunately floundered.  A number of reasons can be attributed to this and many excuses can be fished out of me.  But, bottom line is that I have not remained focused and life has thrown me numerous curves since last year.

After losing my job at Lexmark in November 2007, I had to take the unemployment route and began delivering Pizzas for Papa John’s to try to supplement the income until I could get something substantial again.  Obviously, delivering pizzas is not conducive to eating a good weight-loss promoting diet.  And I ate pizza almost daily.  Stress of being jobless did not help either.

Then, I finally got a position that would be more substantial financially, but it meant my having to move to Woodstock, Ontario without my wife and kids and grandkids and begin working as a Japanese interpreter at the new Toyota plant there.  There were obviously pros and cons associated with this move.  Te pros included a substantial income increase, the opportunity to build upon my Japanese skills even more and then the opportunity to see a bit more of the world (which I have documented on my website at  The downside would be that I would live away from home and travel back once a month (originally…but that changed to twice a month as of July).  I would be working in a plant environment which meant lots of time on my feet and knees.  I would be living in hotel which meant lots of eating out.

To make a long story short, I have had the best of times and the worst of times here since February.  In March I was involved in a major accident while on a trip to Ohio in a snowstorm.  My van was totalled and I had to get a new “used” vehicle.  My three to four month gig in Ontario has turned out to be more than 8 months long (though I now see the light at the end of the tunnel as I will finally get to return to Kentucky on Oct. 3).  I have seen some wonderful scenery, many interesting places and met many wonderful people through my travels around SW Ontario, New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Michigan.  My Japanese skills are even better and it has been fascinating to watch a shell of aplant turn into a production facility. And my fascination with production processes has been fulfilled as well.  But, my health has taken a hit….I have gained a substantial amount of weight back due to poor eating habits, eating to assuage loneliness and depression, etc.  I have developed veinous stasis (poor blood circulation in my legs…I think I already had a bit of this in the past, but all the time on my feet here in the plants has exaccerbated the problem.  I now have to wear compression stockings to keep my legs from swelling too much.  My knees have gotten worse as well. 

But, on the bright side, I have tried to remain upbeat as much as possible.  I travel alot (despite the cost of gasoline) and have had the opportunity to see sights and write about them.  The trip journals have proven to be therapeautic for me, as has the traveling.  But, living out of a suitcase can be a drag.  Seems like even when I go home, I am living out of a suitcase.

Well, as the Sumoflam Saga continues, I plan to now use this blog to document my random thoughts, to wrap up my travels in a different direction than my trip journals (i.e., go into deeper analysis about things such as why communities have instituted the use of murals as a form of community promotion and beautification; why some communities use novelty items, such as giant statues of mooses, buffaloes and cows, to promote tourism; production plants and infrastructures–a look at why so many auto plants are along US Interstate 75 and Canada’s Highway 401 corridor, etc.)  Naturally, I will also try to comment on weight loss.  I’ll comment on music and whatever else seems to be he course du jour in my mind.  I need this outlet to keep me sane and mentally active.

All photos and commentary expressed are copyright of Sumoflam Productions and David Kravetz. All rights reserved.

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