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Episode 13 – Is it too late to start?

if you think its too late, you may be right. but what if youre not? if you could change would you even want to?

Show Notes

Is it ever too late to start? You’re listening to the daidokoro video podcast. Hi, I’m Pat Tokuyama and you’re about to discover some of the tastiest ways to feed your mind, body and soul. A pharmacist by training you may know me as the founder of all day I eat like a shark, the food blog, YouTube channel or as author of several Japanese cookbooks. If you desire to live a healthy life and are looking for a different way forward with a hunger for growth then this video podcast is for you. Daidokoro is a Japanese term for kitchen. And I’m glad you’re here with each episode, we’re going to be bringing clarity to your cooking by blending Japanese tradition and life lessons into bite sized bits that even a shark would enjoy ready to make some magic happen. 


If you think it’s too late, you may be right. But what if you’re not you may be surprised to hear this. But I actually grew up in a small town called Newport Beach, it’s a little bit bigger than it used to be. It’s in Orange County, California, a little bit south of Los Angeles. And when I was a kid, one of my favorite things to do during the summer time, at least from what I remember was to go to beach camp, the beach camp that I went to is called Pirates Cove beach camp. And they had a pirate flag as one of the markers for where the camp was located on the beach. And I don’t remember how old I was. But basically we get dropped off by our parents, and then we go hang out at the beach all day. 


So playing in the sand, playing in the water splashing around maybe making some sand castles digging holes in the sand, just one of my favorite things to do. I’ll be enough as a kid, and also boogie boarding. And sometimes we even take field trips to go other places, like the waterpark known as wild rivers, which I don’t think it’s there anymore. But basically, that was what we did at beach camp. So it was a lot of fun. I did it for several years in a row. And in spite of that, and in spite of living just like a five minute drive away from the beach surfing was one of the things that I didn’t learn how to do until college. And as you can imagine, the older that you get, sometimes it’s more difficult to learn certain things, especially if it’s going to be a little bit technical.


 I think kids usually pick up things a little bit quicker than adults. But of course, that’s just a generalization. And it did take me a while to learn how to surf though. So I did take lessons at UC San Diego when I was in college, I started with a longboard, because those are a lot more stable, and they’re easier to paddle and catch waves. And because they’re longer and bigger and bulkier, it’s easier to stand up on when you’re not used to bouncing on a board like that while you’re getting pushed by a wave. So in spite of the lessons, it still took me probably I don’t know, 40 or 50 visits to the beach after that’s before I actually felt comfortable surfing. So if you’ve ever seen people fall off a surfboard or wipe out on a wave, that’s what I was doing for the first 40 or 50 trips to the beach. And as you can imagine, it was not pleasant, it was not a very fun experience, did think about quitting and just giving up altogether. 


But I was really, really determined to learn how to surf because I was going to school by the beach, some of the best waves in the country, San Diego is a great surfing destination. If you didn’t know, we’re just right outside my door. And I wanted to take advantage of it. I wanted to learn how to surf, in spite of all those wipeouts those falls the cold water and not having a good wetsuit, because I didn’t know what a good wetsuit was, and almost giving up a few times out of just pure frustration, and just not being able to stand up and catch waves, I started to make a little bit of progress. And once I started to see some of the light at the end of the tunnel, like I was catching the wave, but I wasn’t able to stand up, but then I was able to stand up. And then finally I was able to catch the wave and surf and make a few turns that really motivated me. 


So as far as is it too late, kind of like my surfing journey, which, you know, that was something that I could have learned when I was younger, but I didn’t. I learned, you know, well into my young adult years, I think the short answer is no. And if you’ve never gone surfing, I think it’s one of the most liberating feelings you could ever experience, at least when you’re out in nature in the ocean to be pushed by a wave naturally. And to feel the power of the ocean. You know, these waves are coming from hundreds of 1000s of miles away across the Pacific Ocean, or if you’re in the Atlantic, or whatever ocean you’re by. Usually these are storms that are pushing wind against the water, which creates the waves. And eventually those waves hit the shore or the beach, which is where we surf. So if you can imagine all that distance that that energy has traveled to meet you where you are and push you along that wave, it’s a pretty cool feeling. And depending on the wave, it might be a fast way where you’re going really fast, or it might be slow and mellow and you can have some time to look around and see how things are going around you and just take it easy. 

But anyways, if you’ve never surf before there’s no feeling like it so if you haven’t tried yet, maybe give it a try. Next time you’re at a warm water destination or they have surfing, you might like it and it’s never too late. And since then I’ve gone on many surf trips around the world. Some of my favorites have been on Costa Rica as well as I’ve gone in Hawaii as well and Indonesia is probably my top so next up, I want to go to South Pacific, Fiji and Tahiti on my radar, maybe even Peru. But I definitely wouldn’t be here talking about surfing and my surf trips if I had given up and thought that it was too late. So I guess the moral of the story is that I think it’s better late than never, for most things. At least that’s my philosophy. What about you? What have you learned recently, maybe in your adult life that you could have learned as a kid that you just learned? And you’re glad that you did? Because better late than never is what you thought as well. I’d be curious, let me know in the comments right now. 


And also, as far as is it too late to start too late is a little bit of a relative term or phrase, too late relative to what? What is too late. So for example, I can tell you about a time that Emy and I and my wife were in France, we were traveling, it was really in there early in the morning, we were trying to get from Provence to Leon, which is one of the major cities in France. And one of the things that we were not aware of, that’s totally my fault is we went to the right train track. But because we were early, we got on the wrong train. And I didn’t check I didn’t realize until after it started to leave, because they announced it on the overhead that this is a nonstop train to Paris. 


So it was a high speed nonstop train to Paris, and we spent three hours on the train, there were no seats, because it was completely sold out. And I had to sit in the middle of two carriages in that you know that walking space that connects the two carriages together for three hours listening to the noisy train, it was not a pleasant experience. And then by the time we got to Paris, we had to backtrack to Leone, buy new tickets, of course, because they’re not gonna just give us a free ride. So we did that. And we made it just in time for a restaurant reservation for lunch, which is a Japanese French restaurant highly recommended. I’ll link that in the show notes. If you’re interested in some fine dining in Leon France, if you ever get a chance. 


In that situation, it was too late, it was too late to get off the train because we missed our opportunity to the board and get on the correct train. So I don’t know I digress, I guess I’m kind of reminiscing about that story. That was a little bit of a digression, I realized. But I think what I was trying to say was that it’s not really a matter of too late, but really a matter of belief and expectation that you can accomplish something. 


So kind of like the placebo effect, if you’re familiar with that is the belief or the expectation that you’re going to be healed by the placebo or the pill that you’re going to be taking. And that’s the outcome that you get. So you usually get what you expect. That holds true to me in my life. I don’t know about you guys. I’d be curious. Let me know in the comments, if you do believe that you get what you expect. So as far as is it too late? I don’t think so I think it’s really a matter of is this something that you believe that you can accomplish? And is this something that you expect that you can accomplish? And if the answer is yes to both of those, maybe you can. And it reminds me of a book called Dying to be me, which is sort of related to the placebo effect and sort of not. This is a book about a woman who was diagnosed with cancer terminal illness, but then she has a miracle or a miraculous recovery, and she goes into remission. So highly recommended. It’s a great read. If you haven’t heard of it, I’ll link it in the show notes as well.


So much like the placebo effect, as long as you expect and believe that you can accomplish something. It’s never too late. It’s only a matter of time, or is it maybe it’s a matter of are you willing to do the work to make the change? And is it something that you both believe that you can accomplish and expect that you can accomplish? The mind is a very powerful thing, isn’t it?


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Konnichiwa! (Hello!) I'm Pat Tokuyama, a Japanese tofu cookbook author, who travels for music, food, and adventure. If you like Japanese tea, checkout some of the newestorganic japanese tea, matcha bowls and noren and more!

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