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There is no end.
There is no beginning.
There is only the infinite passion of life.
— Federico Fellini
Tonight was my last night training with the wonderful people of our grand junction Dojo, and yet I feel no sadness in leaving. Times change, people change, but the spirit which empowers the drive which has us train remains. It is an intersting feeling between hope and the reserved tides of wistful remembrance. I didn't cry, which I thought I would, nor did I brood, which I probibly would have.
An interesting thing happened.
A mini epiphany.
I felt the "stillness" that as a dancer, an artist and author, had been so illusive. I was able to dip my hands into that stillness and understand, feel the very essence of the movements that I have been so clumsily cluttering up the last few weeks. I as an Uke, became softer. My rolls and movements lost the stop and go drag which had been so frustrating. I was comlimented several times on just how good of an Uke I have become. This from the days of fighting technique and even tripping Nage (Or "Tipping Nage" as we call it).
Testing was interesting to watch. I know I should simply sit and watch a little more often. Three people tested, all passed. There was laughter, frustration and ofcourse the all omnipotent "blank stare of bewilderdness". But the atmosphere was wonderful. Silence used to bother me, but silence this time was different. A welcome afgan around your shoulders.
I am greatful for the expereinces that I have been granted in the short time that I have been training. Comeing to know each and everyone of the people I train with has been interesting. I can only hope that they all stick to training and will remain there when I return in the fall. Our current Sensei is leaving for another state, and thus leaving the helm to the two seniormost students. He thanked me tonight and said that he was proud of me and admired that I had stuck with it. I thanked him and smiled. I owe a lot to his patience and guidance. If he had not been to patient and outgoing with me I'm afraid just where I would be right now. Courage, humiliaty and strength of will. He is a person that I will never forget. I hope to be able to train with him again someday. Perhaps when I'm Kyu'ed or even a blackbelt ( High hopes eh?).
Another lesson learned.
Your dojomates become friends and family after a while. When one person is missing we all know it, and when were all on the mat… its hell to pay. Even in a group where the ratio of men to women is 5:1 , there is no compition or uneasiness. We all practice fairly and enthusiatically, even when the day has been long, or that of so illusive technique rears its ugly little head. I am temporarily leaving the dojo nest and journying out on my own. A new Sensei and oodles of new sempai for kyuless little ol me.
I hope to be welcomed as warmly as I was before. And I hope to be rewelcomed when I return back "home".
Perhaps I'm just getting too sentimental in my old age?