More than a gasshuku report

So it’s a week since I went to Finland for the gasshuku in Tyrnävä. I’ve never been that far north in my life and it once again, on a Friday, I was in an airport. Nothing makes me happier than to be heading somewhere, and with the end of the year looming it’s a good time to be taking stock. I had travelled with my laptop so that I could try and capture some of the feelings that I was having, but in truth it was to watch some movies. The thing was, I forgot to download anything and so by the time I arrived to the airport I didn’t have enough time to actually download anything decent. Just as well I had the entire Game of Thrones saved. I’ve started the first season about 4 times but never made it beyond the first say 5 episodes. Now I’m not a super duper Dan grade or anything so to be going so far to actually do what I love doing was a gift. 🎁 Which of course meant that I needed to plan what I was going to focus on for the weekend so that I was going to give people something meaningful to take away from the gasshuku. I knew little about the levels of the people I would work with and so I was more or less blind. Not nerve wrecking at all. Now I had the experience […]

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…and we’re off

Another trip to Okinawa begins. I’m gonna admit, this trip I’ve had a count down for about 5 months and it seemed for ages like as it was just not getting any closer. Then 1 week out and I get sick, not just your normal garden variety sick, no my entire immune system decided to switch itself off and ignore […]

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Not another meeting!

I am a daydreamer. Always have been, I can  put earphones in, head for a run and I am gone….I don’t even feel the miles tick by at times. Is it an escape mechanism? I don’t really know, but I do recognise there are times when an active imagination can just confuse a situation or me, which lets face it is very easy. I like wondering what people are really like… I would love to be able to read people’s thoughts for say 10 minutes. Can you imagine? It would be so interesting. I reckon 10 minutes would do it… I don’t want that sort of power for too long. No, 10 minutes… thanks! The problem though, as a day dreamer is when your mind decides to start joining it’s own dots… like now… I’m in a meeting on the top story of an impressive building, the sun is doing it’s best to break through the soup of clouds and the subject matter is heavy going. For once, I’m late, I was summoned to the meeting after mistakenly thinking it started 30 minutes later. I don’t have time to hand over my apologies before we are off and onto the very grown up serious subject at hand. The subject matter is not light, I start to make notes, I’m furiously trying to figure out where we are in the agenda, and to remember what was this meeting even about… It’s one of […]

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What jet lag..?

The first few days in Okinawa are always a bit of a blur… if it’s not the actual in ability to walk in a straight line post flight, then it’s the need to sleep at really inconvenient times… like when the sun is up! I tell myself that I’m going to drink gallons of water because aparently that makes a difference, but all in all I arrive at exactly the same place in time and really nothing is any different. First day, I am awake ridiculously early, before the sun and when I say awake, it’s that I’m completely awake. I heard on the grapevine that there was a karate demonstration in the Budokan, Kagami Biraki (thanks James). So rather than train at Higaonna Senseis dojo I had the mind to run to the Karate Kaiken train there and then run to the Budokan. It made sense in my pre-sun up brain. After all I hand Kankles to get rid of! The thing about kankles is that the first few kilometers are pretty awkward, kind of like a hippo trying to do balance beam. Nothing wrong with a hippo, they are just rarely seen doing gymnastics! So I head off, I pass a fire station on my way and the good people keeping Naha safe are out doing their training and looking way more elegant than I whilst at the same time carrying all sorts of heavy equipment and doing […]

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Nov 1-Season is Open

I was heading to my first day at a new job when the date started to resonate with me for reasons other than trying to remember how to get to the new office. I was probably still a bit jet lagged and the sub 10C temperatures were a long way from those that were starting to become a distant memory […]

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A good start…

My whole life I’ve been lucky enough to see amazing Karateka. As a junior I remember being in weekend gasshukus in the Lee Maltings (Cork, Ireland) with Senseis Steve Cattle, Dirk Heene and Julian Mead. This sparked an interest in me to learn more, to never stop trying to add to my knowledge and to seek out new opportunities. I’m […]

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