A Night at the Dojo

Attendees: Sensei Randy, Greg, Keith, Stan, Igor (white belt professional photographer from Kazakhstan) and Laura Lita (a brown belt to whom I did not introduce myself).

Forward rolls: more progress still a long way to go.

Releases: 1, 2 and 3

Worked on taking a fall as uke and generating falls as nage. Still unsure about this "making people fall" thing, I'm sure I'll get better at it.

Worked on Shomen-ate, the first technique, only on my right side. I made pretty good progress, but I did shot-put Greg on one attempt. He likes to take falls, but not like that, I'm sure.


A Bug

Caught a bit of a bug Friday and went home early. Slept most of the weekend, ruining a number of plans and potential plans. Stayed home from work today, as I was too miserable to go in.

It might be allergies. It is responding to antihistamines.


A Night at the Dojo

In attendance: Sensei Tim, Greg, Keith and Stan.

More forward rolls. Making some progress, still have a lot of work to do.

Worked on 1st and 2nd release. Did some work as uke with Stan and, supposedly, helped him out some. My height alters the approach to take somewhat.


It (they?) finally arrived!

A book (or maybe books) arrived that I ordered a long time ago. Before I was working where I'm working now. Probably at least a year before the job change. So, that makes it about 3.5 years. Yes, 3 and 1/2 years.

I haven't opened the box yet, so I don't know if it's both of the books that I'm waiting on, or just one of them. I'll check tonight.

The reason that it took so long for the book(s)? They are signed, numbered (or lettered) and in slipcase books. I ordered them back when I had appreciable amounts of discretionary income.

I hope they're worth the wait.

A Night at the Dojo

Tonight's attendees: Stan, Greg (a new face, green belt, not the white belt Greg), Keith and Sensei Randy.

Tasks: Forward rolls (worked on left side for the first time), The Walk, and 1st release (I think).

Rolls: We brought out the big, soft mat (aka queen size mattress) for me to fall onto for the rolls. I'm still jumping as I roll and landing more on my shoulder than I should. I made some progress and rolled with right foot forward for the first time. I've been concentrating on left foot forward to just get something right. Keeping my hands together during the roll was a valuable training device.

The Walk: Spent more time on the pivoting section of the walk, making the motion fluid and keeping an unbendable arm.

1st release: With help, realized why last week's work felt too soft: I was not keeping my hand in my center. With that change, and bringing the off foot next to the power foot while pivoting, I was creating off-balances. It felt like something was actually happening.


A host of hawks

Saturday morning, while going in and out of the house loading the truck for our trip to San Antonio, our local hawk contingent appeared. There were at least two pairs of red-shouldered hawks flying about and resting in our trees.

There may have been more, but I was unable to differentiate individuals and they were too mobile for them all to be at rest at one time.

I don't remember if this is their normal nest-building time, but I think it is. Maybe we'll have a nest in the yard again this year. It's been several years since we've had one in one of our tress, so maybe we're due.

I should post a picture of one of the pairs soon. I've got to get it off of the camera first.

I also saw several hawks sitting in trees along I-10 on our drive home fron San Antonio yesterday. 3 red-tailed hawks and 1 red-shouldered hawk. They all appeared to be quite annoyed with the rain and cold wind. They were all huddled against the wind, but they were resting in places that received a full does of the wind.

The red-tails were mostly white bodies with dark wings and backs and red bars on the tails of one of them. The red-shoulder was the typical orange body and head with the dark wings.


Scuba deals

A friend of mine managed to score the contents of an abandoned storage unit. From a defunct scuba shop.

Kim and I now have: Gemini octopi with Sherwood regulators, Gemini BCDs, full wetsuits, and cold and warm diving hoods.

I'll I have to do to pay for this stuff is sell what he doesn't want to keep on e-bay.



A Night at the Dojo

Last night started off with a small crowd: Sensei Tim, Stan (a brown belt) and myself. Two other folks showed up: Keith (I think) a white belt and another guy who's been there each night I've either watched or been on the mat. My name memory is bad.

Did a little stretching and then on to back falls. I spent a good bit of time working on forward rolls to my right and felt some improvement. I've still got a long way to go, but I was quite annoyed after my first night so this is a good development.

Then I did a bunch of work with Sensei on the walk, working on the first 7 of the 11 parts of the pattern. He added some hand motions to the walk for me this time because he wanted me to work on a move with the other white belt.

A good night on the mat. Mentally encouraging.

I don't know if my headaches are related to my forwrd rolls, though. We'll see if they disappear or stick around.


First night of Aikido

I've been thinking about taking up Aikido for some additional exercise for quite some time. About 10 years, I think.

I didn't get up the gumption to figure out which of 3 local dojos were right for me until about 2 weeks ago. It didn't take long to figure out that only one dojo met the openings in my schedule: Monday and Wednesday nights. Tuesday is reserved for volleyball, Thursday is reserved for Canine Agility and Friday/Saturday/Sunday are too volatile to schedule anything on a regular basis. So, Clear Lake Aikido was the chosen dojo.

I went and watched a couple of nights before deciding that it looked they had a comfortable atmosphere.

Last night was my first night. I'm not too sore. How sore I am is a result of somersaulting instead of rolling. It's going to take me a while to learn how to roll properly.

I think I'm doing ok on back falls for having only done one night.

The walk (the 88 movement routine that encompasses most of the moves needed for aikido) went ok. I was told to just work on the footwork for the moment. The accompanying hand/arm movements will come in time.

We also discussed the physics behind the movements and the foot positioning. Mainly the foot positioning. The physics I understand, mentally. Incorporating that into body knowledge is the long-term goal.

One nice thing about the dojo: the classes that I've seen so far are small. Last night there were four of us. One red/white belt, and brown and two whites. The other white belt is just a white belt in aikido, he has other, more advanced belts in other disciplines. It certainly appears that most folks have belts in other disciplines from what I've seen.

I hope to make it to the dojo twice a week and on the occasional Saturday that Kim has to work.


Fire Department won't do it

My D&D group got together for our weekly session. Shortly after starting, we got a phone call telling us that a cat that belonged to a relative of one of the gaming guys was stuck up a tree. The gaming session was temporarily interrupted while we all drove a few miles to rescue the poor thing. It took a while to do.

Here is the last minute or so. It's very dark.