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Sunday morning I was back at the Seibukan for Nakao Sensei`s morning class. I was really pleased to find him doing another class on kokyu waza, similar to the last one but with a few waza changes. The class was pretty full and there wasn`t much space to take ukemi, this suited me as I was still feeling a little tender around the "hernia" and my body just ached like hell from the previous two days.
An hour and a half later I was still standing, just , time for the next class (always two classes on Sunday morning), this one to be taken by Fujii Sensei. Fujii Sensei is also an Aikikai 6th Dan and runs a dojo at Nagoya and comes to the Seibukan once a month. I`ve met him a number of times over the last 10 years I`ve been coming to Japan, his Aikido is nice and "strong" . He always has time to come and give a few tips during class but the main benefit for me was that I could actually practice with both Nakao Sensei and Uchi Koshi Sensei.....a number of times . I had a small epiphany during this class, for years I`d been watching Nakao Sensei and Uchi Koshi Sensei do iriminage, and there was something in their movement very different to mine, that I hadn`t been able to put my toe on. Today after practicing iriminage with Nakao Sensei I felt like I grasped it. After we switched uke`s Fujii Sensei came over to me and gave me a couple more points on the same thing, result, I`m now gonna spend the next however long trying to change my foot movement from the way I`ve been doing it for the last 14 years . It will I hope be for the best .
3 hours later I`m still standing, but the body is stiffer than a board. Nakao Sensei had invited us (me and family) to go to O Hanami (Cherry blossom viewing) after keiko. My wife and son were waiting outside when I crawled out of the dojo, everyone going had to bring along some food, Ako had two bags of yummies. We set off up the road to a small park in Okurayama where we managed to find a small space under the trees. Someone had a bag of small groundsheets which we strung out and tied to stop blowing away with bags and stones, until people deposited themselves. Everyone placed their goodies into the middle and we waited. A few minutes later a couple of guys lugged a crate of large 500ml Beer bottles and a couple of large sake bottles over, drinks were poured for everyone "O Hanami" toasted Hamazaki Sensei and the party began. Fortunately the weather was quite warm, we were sitting out in T-shirts. the party lasted for a couple of hours or more before we decided to head for home, good decision as everyone else decided to head for a karaoke bar..... these are places I avoid like the plague........